Catch a glimpse of Oscar rehearsals and stars at the Dolby Theater

LOS ANGELES — On Oscar Sunday, audiences can expect the reunion of stars from some of their favorite films.

Four Weddings and a Funeral co-stars Hugh Grant and Andie MacDowell will stand side by side at the show to present an award, as will Harrison Ford and Glenn Close, the President and Vice President of the United States on Air Force One ‘ and Creed III enemies Michael B. Jordan and Jonathan Majors.

The Associated Press got a glimpse of the Oscars rehearsals at the Dolby Theater on Saturday morning. A two-hour blackout in Hollywood did not affect work at the Dolby, but it did force shops and restaurants in the Hollywood and Highland complex to close and halted elevators at an adjacent hotel.

On Saturday morning, as a light, cold rain was falling outside, the Oscar presenters made their way to the theater to do their lines and practice handing out awards. It’s one of several rehearsals leading up to the show, culminating in a full run that stretches late into the night.

The theater, populated by a few dozen people from Janet Yang, President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, to the stagehands and cameramen practicing their moves, exuded calm and anticipation.

“I hope I said everything correctly,” MacDowell said as he opened the envelope. “I hope I’m pronouncing everything correctly. I wish Hugh would do that part.”

The awards are fake, as are the winners — working actors are hired to play nominees, sit in their seats, take the stage, and deliver acceptance speeches. The same person could play everyone from “Tár” director Todd Field to composer John Williams. And all ready to leave with well-researched and very brief remarks.

The moderators all have different approaches. Some are one and done – others have questions and tweaks. Jordan discussed the font size on the teleprompter with show producer Glenn Weiss. Mindy Kaling had her director’s hat on and wrote and edited some of her and John Cho’s comments on the spot.

“Sorry for asking so many questions,” Kaling said.

“No, thank God you did,” Cho replied.

Florence Pugh and Andrew Garfield had giggles running through their lines. Garfield went to the microphone and cleared his throat.

“Maybe don’t do that,” Pugh said.

Halle Berry practiced with a petite brunette who played Jessica Chastain, and Kate Hudson made a dramatic entrance, holding out her arms theatrically as if to say, “I’ve arrived.”

Although everyone will be upside down in 24 hours, rehearsals are a decidedly more casual affair – at least for the men. Jordan wore a matching black tracksuit, while Grant opted for a more professorial look with a blazer, sweater and oxford combo. The women were all wearing their show heels with their jeans and lingerie. Not only do cameramen need to know how big the stars will be on the night, but it’s a long way down the famous stage, in front of millions of spectators.

However, most of what goes on in the theater is highly confidential – from the look of the stage to who gives which awards and what the script says they’re supposed to say. Finally, those behind the show, which airs live on ABC on Sundays at 8 p.m. Eastern, want to keep a few surprises.


AP Entertainment Writer Jonathan Landrum Jr. contributed to this report.


For more information on this year’s Oscars, visit:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *