We were told TwiFi Awards would be the perfect platform to pick the best and most deserving candidates to award. It helped that the platform was being set up just as the usual award shows were going on in B-town, with the same perform and walk away with the prize allegations, the behind the curtain machinations, the favorites, and even talk of the buying and selling of awards. It all seemed a bit sleazy and most of these ceremonies were simply big dance and perform parties. A leading journalist took the opportunity to berate the B-town awards and tell to look to the Oscars for how it is really done – see their professionalism, their selection process, and their seamless and classy show!
Of course the Oscars happened, and I did spend my precious time looking to the show for all I was promised. I came away with a sense of acute disappointment as far as the show and the awards were both concerned. Give me Ranbir Kapoor in a dress over James Franco in a dress, and the Filmfare song dance routine over the disembowelled and butchered performances at the Oscars. As for the award choices themselves – I was left wishing for a “critics” category so the likes of Hailee Stenfeld, Jesse Eisenberg, Chris Nolan, and True Grit would have been appropriately rewarded! The members of the Academy did a fine job of mimicking the online voting set up by our magazines – the difference was that the magazines came up with a list of nominations using the brute force vote approach, while the Academy fuddy-duddies manged to use something like that to actually select winners!!! And yes the oft mentioned fact that Harvey Weinstein ended up pushing the King’s Speech into virtually every winning category reminded me much of the buying and selling of B-town awards.
So what were we expecting from the TwiFi nominations then? Some kind of rise of independent cinema? Is that possible when many critics on the jury have their own pandering to do, and the Tweeple jury was selected by popular vote? Vote equals majority, and that often equals popular and successful cinema, and not the small independent kind. This process was also somewhat shrouded in mystery as nominations by each individual are not yet made public. I think this is not transparent, but also could be wise, a way to protect certain individuals from the flak they will face on public forums once their choices are out in the open. And if we think this popular vote in jury selection was problematic, we should wait and see what happens once the nominations are opened to a public vote!!!
Right now the TwiFi nominations are not that different from those for any other award, and I will be shocked if the final outcome is! What is the solution to getting people the awards they want? Forget the people’s choice and voice BS and go ahead and create your own awards list! If you want to be elitist then forget about the hoipolloi and be an elitist with pride.