Who needs Tinseltown this March 25? You can watch the Academy Awards in true Northern California style. The following Oscar night events sell out quickly, so call—or get in line—early for tickets.
Up the Oscars, Roxie Cinema, San Francisco, (415) 863-1087; www.roxie.com. Some people have no respect and many of them show up at the Roxie's annual bash. The crowd is as entertaining as the actual show. The awards ceremony is projected on the screen. During commercials, the audience is treated to clips from old Oscar shows. Spectators yell "Sweep!" when someone wins or "Get off!" at long-winded speeches; they give thumbs up or down during film clips. Last year, they hissed at NRA president Charlton Heston and guffawed at Jane Fonda as she attempted to "prevent" instead of "present" an award. The Roxie encourages people to bring their own food, drink, and attitude.
Academy of Friends Oscar Gala, Fort Mason, San Francisco, (415) 995-9890; www.academyoffriends.org. Reputedly the largest Oscar party outside of Los Angeles, this annual gala is pricey at $200 a person, but proceeds benefit AIDS organizations. The event spares no expense on glitz and glamour, so attendees, decked out in gowns and tuxes, can feel like stars. Large screens project the Oscars throughout the pavilion as guests sample appetizers from favorite San Francisco restaurants—Boulevard, JohnFrank, and Mecca. Amid the extravagance, the silent auction is a good place to find deals on everything from furniture to art to travel.
Oscar Night America, Palace Hotel, San Francisco, (415) 383-5256. This $150-a-head splash is put on by the Film Institute of Northern California, sponsor of the Mill Valley Film Festival. ONA claims to be the "official" Bay Area Oscar party (it's licensed by the academy). Attendees receive a real Oscar program. Last year's event kicked off with a vodka martini bar, followed by a four-course dinner. During commercials, BayTV film critic Jan Wahl dished out humor from under her memorably large hat.
Photography by Yoram Kahana/Shooting Star
This article was first published in March 2001. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.