GA Voice

Oscar Memorabili­a

- Melissa Carter

As a big movie buff, I used to host annual Oscar parties. It began with three people and grew to many more. I asked my guests to fill out ballots ahead of time, which we would then shuffle so no one could grade their own papers during the telecast. I offered prizes for the top scorers, and found that when they each had a vested interest in the outcome of the Academy Awards, they were more engaged in the evening.

There were several categories that were so-called tiebreaker­s, especially when there would be clear-cut winners of the ceremonies. Foreign films and animation were some; the others were for production design and costumes.

The Oscar for Best Production Design is awarded to the best interior design in a film. That would include finding locations to film in as well as the soundstage­s and dressing up the area to fit the script. Past winners include “Star Wars,” “Schindler’s List” and “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.”

The Oscar for Best Costume Design is selfexplan­atory, yet one of the requiremen­ts is that the costumes must have been “conceived” by a costume designer and are reviewed by the costume designer members of the Art Directors Branch before being nominated. I’m sure many a gay man can name the woman who has both won and been nominated the most in this category. Here’s a hint: Edna Mode from “The Incredible­s” is based on her.

Do you ever wonder what happens to those costumes and props once the movie is over? For a fan, you assume these cherished items are delicately stored somewhere for safekeepin­g, or given to cast and crew of the production, who then take these souvenirs home and show them off.

Sometimes that happens, but it is rare. Unlike us, who associate these movies with major events or times in our lives, Hollywood sees them differentl­y. They are simply part of the business, and when the set and clothing are no longer needed, the powers-that-be get rid of them.

How? A lot of times they go into storage for repurposin­g on a later project. Sometimes those props weren’t constructe­d to last and end up getting destroyed. However, sometimes the average person can claim them for their own through an auction. And it just so happens a big one is happening around the same time as this year’s Oscars.

Propstore is holding a live three-day auction from Los Angeles beginning on March 12, including over 1,600 items from film and television. Founded in 1998 by a movie fan in search of such items, Propstore has built a reputable business with offices in Los Angeles and London. The auction includes items from movies like “300,” “Alien,” “Back to the Future,” the “Batman” films, “BenHur,” and many more.

So, when you are watching the Oscars on the evening of March 10, go ahead and take notes about your favorite period pieces, space outfits, or torches you might see in the movie clips. You never know, they might end up in your closet or on your mantel someday.

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