Star gives a sneak preview of its Oscar plans

MUMBAI: Star Movies seems to have stolen a march over chief rival HBO in its bid to generate some Oscar buzz. Though the awards are a while away (25 March to be exact), the promo campaign has already begun.

The move has added import considering that HBO is planning a big Oscar blitz of its own. Of course Star Movies has the rights to the "Big One" - exclusive live relay of the awards ceremony.

In a move clearly aimed at attracting advertising, as well as generating media awareness for the event the channel has started sending boxes to media and advertising outlets which convey the impression that a replica of the statuette is contained within. The taglines being "Only one movie channel has it live!" and "Will your brand be there?"

The 74th Annual Academy Awards will be shown live on 25 March at 6:30 am with a repeat at 9:30 pm. Whoopi Goldberg, an Oscar winner herself for 'Ghost', will be the MC. The nominations will be shown live on 12 February at 7 pm with a repeat on 16 Feb at 5:30 pm. For India, the focal point of interest will be whether 'Lagaan' gets a look-in the Foreign Language category.

In the build-up to awards night, from 1-24 March the channel will showcase films that have won or have been nominated for the awards in previous years. These include Philadelphia which gave Tom Hanks his first Oscar, Thelma & Louise with Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon, American Beauty which won the best picture Oscar a couple of years ago and the Tom Cuise starrer Jerry Maguire.

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