Monday, March 24, 2003

'Chicago' is best, wins 6 Oscars

'Pianist' scores double surprise

By Margaret A. McGurk
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Chicago won six Oscars, including best picture, at Sunday night's Academy Award ceremony. Catherine Zeta-Jones, nominated for her first Oscar, won as best supporting actress.

  See what the stars wore. Check out our gallery of 24 photos.

"My hormones are too way out of control to be dealing with this," she said, in reference to her pregnancy. She is due to give birth within a month.

Chicago director Rob Marshall, however, lost out to Roman Polanski, who won for The Pianist. The Oscar audience gasped and leapt to its feet in a loud ovation when Polanski's name was announced. Conventional wisdom held him an unlikely winner because of his fugitive status. He fled the country more than 15 years ago to avoid sentencing on a conviction for statutory rape.

The Pianist also won an Oscar for first-time nominee Adrien Brody, in a field that included previous Oscar winners Jack Nicholson, Daniel Day-Lewis, Michael Caine and Nicolas Cage. The movie won a third award for adapted screenplay.

The winners: Chris Cooper, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Nicole Kidman and Adrien Brody.
(AP photo/Mark J. Terrill)
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Nicole Kidman was named best actress for playing writer Virginia Woolf in The Hours, the film's only Oscar.

Chris Cooper, a veteran character actor who galvanized critics with his performance as an obsessive orchid collector in Adaptation, won the best-supporting actor award on his first nomination.

He shared credit with co-star Meryl Streep, saying, "Working with this woman was like making great jazz."

Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodovar won the Oscar for best original screenplay for his Spanish-language film Talk to Her.

The first award of the night went to best animated feature Spirited Away, directed byHayao Miyazaki.

Visual effects and sound-editing honors went to The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, while Chicago scored for art direction, costume design, sound and editing. Frida took Oscars for makeup and for Elliot Goldenthal's score.

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