1. WAS THE CEREMONY “SAFE” OR “BORING"?: The return of Ellen DeGeneres as host of the Academy Awards was deemed less offensive than Seth MacFarlane's stint last year, with an opening monologue that was devoid of clip montages and song-and-dance routines, and instead filled with jokes many called “safe.” But The Hollywood Reporter's Bottom Line accused the ceremony of being “so boring, so long, so self-involved, and driven sideways into a ditch by, of all people, the beloved Ellen DeGeneres as host.” And although there were “good moments,” the timing seemed off. “It seemed to take forever for the first award to be handed out, then forever for the next one, which set the tone for something no awards show should do—be in a situation where the bulk of the major awards presentations come outside of primetime.” http://bit.ly/1eL4S4O
Variety's Brian Lowry also called this year's Academy Awards boring, saying it was a “steadfastly middle-of-the-road take on the Oscars.” But the critic also pointed out it was less bewildering than previous years, where the attempt to woo a younger audience was noticeable. “All told, it was a ho-hum evening, but not an embarrassing one—a long sit, punctuated by occasional moments, and genuine suspense regarding the eventual coronation of 12 Years a Slave. And if that sounds like a small victory, in Oscar terms, it’s the equivalent of defying gravity.” http://bit.ly/1cwJGe9
2. THE SELFIE SEEN AROUND THE WORLD: Among the antics of the Oscar host during the ceremony was a tweeted photo of DeGeneres, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Lupita Nyong'o, and others—a pic that was retweeted more than two million times. According to Reuters, ”'We got an email from Twitter and we crashed and broke Twitter. We have made history,' DeGeneres said shortly after access to the social media site was disrupted due to sharing of her star-studded picture.” http://reut.rs/1jLRCxb
Check out the now-infamous selfie here: http://bit.ly/1g4gw76
Another unexpected moment was also well received: the delivery of pizza to the designer-clad audience. Not only did DeGeneres pass out pies to stars like Brad Pitt and Jared Leto, but she also made a joke of using Pharrell's hat to collect money to pay the deliveryman. The New York Daily News: http://nydn.us/1mPZvXh
3. OSCARS LIVE BROADCAST DEEMED INAPPROPRIATE IN UKRAINE: According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Russian state-run Channel One canceled its live broadcast of the Academy Awards. ”'Due to a large number of news reports on the situation around the autonomous republic of Crimea and Ukraine and due to the viewers' increased interest in news, Channel One considers the live broadcasting of the Oscar ceremony for five hours to be inappropriate, especially in the early morning hours [Moscow time], when the maximum amount of news broadcasting is done,' the network said on its web site.” http://bit.ly/1fAe9xZ
In related news, activists opposing Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro were heartened by Jared Leto's acceptance speech, which notably paid tribute to those who have died from AIDS, as well as those suffering in Venezuela and the Ukraine. Reuters: http://reut.rs/1eV9UqI
The Professional Convention Management Association will hold its second Global Corporate Summit at Milano Congressi in Milan, Italy, July 16-20. The invitation-only event gathers senior global corporate meeting planners.
* LOCAL NEWS *
BOSTON: The Vision Show and Conference is April 15-17. Billed as North America's largest vision and imaging trade show, the event will take place at the Hynes Convention Center.
Lark Hotels will open 21 Broad, a 27-room boutique property, in July.
CHICAGO: Anne Trompeter is the new owner of Live Marketing, a creative agency that specializes in trade show and event marketing experiences.
LAS VEGAS: The sixth annual Walk With Me presented by Easter Seals Nevada is April 19 at W. Wayne Bunker Family Park.
LOS ANGELES: Emerald Expositions announced the promotion of Lori Jenks to senior vice president of operations. She will oversee operations for the San Juan Capistrano-based company's portfolio of more than 85 trade shows, events, and conferences.
Adam Sensenbrenner has left MAC Presents to serve as manager of the Los Angeles-based band US.
Local event listings from Masterplanner: http://www.masterplanneronline.com/losangeles
MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA: The Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County will host the sixth annual Miami Made Festival Thursday through Sunday. The free showcase includes staged play readings and a multimedia performance in the center’s Carnival Studio Theater.
SushiSamba restaurants in Miami Beach and Coral Gables will host carnival celebrations on Tuesday with samba dancers, batucada drummers, DJs, and a live satellite feed of Brazilian Carnaval. There will also be cocktails made with the Brazilian spirit cacaçha.
NEW YORK: Japan Week will take place this Thursday through Saturday at Grand Central Terminal’s Vanderbilt Hall and will include regional foods, technology exhibits, and traditional arts and performances.
Local event listings from Masterplanner: http://www.masterplanneronline.com/newyork
SAN FRANCISCO: At RSA Conference USA, which wrapped up at the Moscone Conference Center on Friday, some exhibitors shelled out $100,000 for their exhibit space. It cost $82.50 per square foot. Washington Post: http://wapo.st/NcgcMB
TORONTO: Starlight Children's Foundation Canada's annual gala is April 24 at Toronto's Fairmont Royal York. This year's theme is “London, Calling!”
WASHINGTON: The Flamenco Festival will present three performances at George Washington University’s Lisner Auditorium today, Friday, and on March 18. Jaleo will offer a “Flamenco Experience Menu” at its three area locations for the duration of the festival.
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With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Beth Kormanik, Jill Menze, and Anna Sekula in New York.
BizBash Daily is the must-read digest of event industry news from BizBash.com.
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