Movie stars still Twitter shy, despite Academy command to tweet
The Twitter Mirror that is going to be used during the Oscars is set up backstage at the 85th Academy Awards in Los Angeles, Friday, Feb. 22, 2013. The Academy Awards will be held Sunday, Feb. 24, 2013. As part of its push to attract younger viewers to the Oscars, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is working to make the show a two-screen experience by offering new camera perspectives and interactive features on its website. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
Published Saturday, February 23, 2013 5:12PM EST
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is calling on Hollywood starts to tweet during Sunday night’s Oscar telecast. But the big idea may go bust because, unlike the big names in the music world, who have millions of Twitter followers and the tweet output to match, actors seem more timid about social media.
The Twitter call-out is part of a massive social-media push by the Academy to bring fans closer to the action. The Academy wants to take full advantage of the “second screen” experience that has become a regular part of big television events: following social media on a smartphone or tablet while watching the Super Bowl, a presidential debate or an awards show.
But rather than tweets from the nominees and other big-name attendees of behind-the-scenes moments, the Academy may have its biggest success with its own official Twitter account (@theacademy). It plans to use what it calls a “Magic Mirror” to take photo booth-style pictures of celebs as they hang out in the green room.
Few of the nominees in the major acting categories are on Twitter, and many have declared their lives social media-free zones in interviews. The top celebrity Twitter users are almost exclusively musicians, who may not be anywhere near L.A.’s Dolby Theatre.
But fans will be able to post video clips shortly after they air to Twitter and Facebook once the Academy gets them on its site. And Oscar.com will be host to a variety of interactive features.
"We're not doing social media to reach out to young kids," the Academy's digital media director, Josh Spector, told The Associated Press. "We're doing it to connect with all Oscar fans."
While Steven Spielberg and Daniel Day-Lewis may not light up social media as they wait for their names to be called, there are a few celebrities worth adding to your “following” list, if even for the night:
Ben Affleck (@BenAffleck): The actor/director isn’t the most active tweeter in Hollywood, but in an average week he mixes film news with the latest on his beloved Boston Red Sox, as well as links related to his ongoing humanitarian work in Congo. But perhaps in the excitement over a best picture nomination for ‘Argo,’ Affleck will let his hair down and tweet some selfies with Matt Damon, George Clooney or wife Jennifer Garner.
Hugh Jackman (@RealHughJackman): Jackman is one of the best sports in Hollywood, always game for sending up himself, or his roles, which makes him a talk-show host’s dream. The best-actor nominee is an active tweeter with lots of behind-the-scenes pics from movie sets, premieres and awards shows. He may have lots to share about Hollywood’s biggest night.
Seth MacFarlane (@SethMacFarlane): At first glance it would seem as though first-time Oscar host MacFarlane would be excluded from the tweet directive, since he will be, you know, a little busy. But then one remembers the musical numbers, the speeches and that there are nine best-picture nominees to get through, and you figure he’s going to have some extra material for his 3.7 million followers. A recent tweet promised, “No cheap wiener jokes. Only expensive wiener jokes,” for the Oscars.
Steve Martin (@SteveMartinToGo): The former Oscar host also has about 3.7 million followers, and in addition to fun and quirky observations about daily life, he does live-tweet major events, such as the Super Bowl. Whether he will be in the audience or watching at home, one hopes the actor, musician and “wild and crazy guy” will have a little fun with a show that is often at risk of taking itself a bit too seriously.
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