January 23, 2011 — Local residents are invited to experience the thrills and surprises of the 84th Academy Awards on Feb. 26 at Charlottesville's own "Oscar Night America" party.
The local event, to be held at the Paramount Theater beginning at 7 p.m., is one of 49 parties officially sanctioned by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences that will be held across the country on Oscar night.
Benefiting the 25th anniversary of the Virginia Film Festival, which is presented by the University of Virginia's College of Arts & Sciences, Charlottesville's Oscar Night is sponsored by Virginia National Bank. Tickets are $45 and go on sale Jan. 24 at the festival's website. Tickets will also be available by phone at 434-924-3376 or in person in the lobby of the U.Va. Drama Building, weekdays from noon to 5 p.m.
The Charlottesville audience will watch the Academy Awards telecast live on Virginia's largest high-definition screen courtesy of WVAW, the Charlottesville affiliate of the ABC Television Network, which broadcasts the Academy Awards. This is the 19th year that the academy and ABC have cooperated with local charities to support official Oscar Night viewing parties throughout the country, and the third year that Charlottesville's party has been sanctioned.
"Oscar night is an event meant to be a shared with others," Academy CEO Dawn Hudson said. "This network of fundraising parties across the nation is a natural extension of that experience, and also represents the year-round philanthropic work the academy does. This February, we are thrilled to be able to celebrate the movies with fans nationwide while supporting charities around the country."
Oscar night parties last year raised more than $3.5 million in 51 cities. All money raised stays in the local community.
The academy will provide party guests in Charlottesville the same official program distributed to guests at the Oscar presentation at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center in Hollywood.
Charlottesville guests may feel like stars themselves as they walk down the red carpet, dine on fine foods provided by some of the area's leading restaurants, sample the best of the thriving Virginia wine scene and sit back and enjoy the festivities, which will be hosted by the Newsplex's own Dan Schutte and Tara Wheeler.
"Oscar night generates excitement all over the world," Virginia Film Festival director Jody Kielbasa said. "Each year, with the academy's help, this event has grown bigger and bigger, and we look forward to another memorable evening, and to raising even more money for the Virginia Film Festival – money which will support the continued growth of the festival itself and our outstanding outreach and education program, which brings the magic of the movies to thousands of local community members each year.
"I think this year's Academy Award broadcast will be of particular interest to local audiences because it is very likely that several films featured in our 2011 program will be nominated. I continue to be proud of the fact that we are able to give our community members a chance to preview the very best films each fall."
The Virginia Film Festival will celebrate its 25th anniversary this year. Over that quarter-century, the festival has grown into one of Virginia's premier cultural landmarks and earned a reputation as one of the nation's leading regional festivals.
Charlottesville's "Oscar Night America" event is presented by Virginia National Bank and supported by presenting media partner Charlottesville Newsplex and supporting media partners Charlottesville Radio Group and Cville Weekly.