Saturday, July 22, 2017 This Week's Paper

Locals get a chance to walk the red carpet at Theatre on the Square

It's “Nebraska” versus “12 Years a Slave,” and Cate Blanchett taking on Judi Dench.

There should be plenty of suspense once the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences starts doling out Oscars on March 2. Ellen DeGeneres has been tapped to host the 86th annual Academy Awards, and ABC-TV will broadcast all the festivities from Hollywood's Dolby Theatre starting at 4 p.m.

Among the hottest places to catch all the action locally will be Broadway Center's Theatre on the Square, 915 Broadway, in Tacoma. That's where the non-profit Grand Cinema will host its annual Academy Awards party, which will feature the broadcast, shown on a 24- by 15-foot projection screen, contests, film trivia and more.

“The event is all about celebrating the past 12 months of film,” Grand Cinema marketing director Zach Powers said. “This is the night that the biggest talents in film get together and gather and award the year's best. So we take the occasion to bring together Pierce County's biggest film buffs and celebrate this year together.

“You have your favorites that you're rooting for. But it's this whole spectacle, and it's fun to enjoy it with community. Then we throw in tons of different festivities and visuals and have a good time.”

Before the show, patrons will receive ballots with all of this year's nominees to fill in with their predictions. The most accurate prognosticator will receive a golden ticket, which allows unlimited free movies at the Grand for a year.

There will also be a costume contest for revelers that come dressed as actors and characters from their favorite flicks. Prizes include a $250 gift certificate to the Melting Pot, free movies passes and Grand t-shirts.

“Some people take the opportunity to get dressed up in red carpet-appropriate formal attire,” Powers said. “Then a lot of people will take advantage of our costume party, so you may have people dressed up as astronauts for 'Gravity,' or people in baseball uniforms for '42.' You never know.”

General admission to the Academy Awards party is $20, which includes complimentary snacks and a seat in the main theater. VIP tickets are $90 and include a seat in a private viewing area, a full dinner catered by Maxwell's Speakeasy + Lounge, complimentary drinks and personal table service; but few of those packages remained earlier this week.

Tickets are available at the Grand Cinema, located at 606 S. Fawcett Ave., in Tacoma, online at or by calling (253) 593-4474.

The 86th annual Academy Awards are Sunday. Here are the nominees in the biggest categories:

Best Picture:

  • “American Hustle,”

  • “Captain Phillips,”

  • “Dallas Buyers Club,”

  • “Gravity,”

  • “Her,”

  • “Nebraska,”

  • “Philomena,”

  • “12 Years a Slave,”

  • “The Wolf of Wall Street”

Best Actor in a Leading Role:

  • Christian Bale (“American Hustle”);

  • Bruce Dern (“Nebraska”);

  • Leonardo DiCaprio (“The Wolf of Wall Street”);

  • Chiwetel Ejiofor (“12 Years a Slave”);

  • Matthew McConaughey (“Dallas Buyers Club”)

Best Actress in a Leading Role:

  • Amy Adams (“American Hustle”);

  • Cate Blanchett (“Blue Jasmine”);

  • Sandra Bullock (“Gravity”);

  • Judi Dench (“Philomena”);

  • Meryl Streep (“August: Osage County”)

Best Actor in a Supporting Role:

  • Barkhad Abdi (“Captain Phillips”);

  • Bradley Cooper (“American Hustle”);

  • Michael Fassbender (“12 Years a Slave”);

  • Jonah Hill (“The Wolf of Wall Street”);

  • Jared Leto (“Dallas Buyers Club”)

Best Actress in a Supporting Role:

  • Sally Hawkins (“Blue Jasmine”);

  • Jennifer Lawrence (“American Hustle”);

  • Lupita Nyong'o (“12 Years a Slave”);

  • Julia Roberts (“August: Osage County”);

  • June Squibb (“Nebraska”)

Find a full list of nominees at