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February 2008

Last Oscars Report (And Something Else :)

And today I want to start this last report with my favorite Oscar speech this year by Marketa Irglova, the most natural girl at the event that night (she had no makeup at all, no high heals and the sweetest smile that you can imagine). But before her speech let's read this important detail from Wikipedia:

When Markéta Irglová was awarded the Award for Best Original Song with Glen Hansard for "Falling Slowly" at the 80th Academy Awards ceremony, her acceptance speech after Hansard's was pre-empted by the orchestra's music cue to leave the stage. In an unprecedented move, host Jon Stewart invited her back on stage to deliver her acceptance speech following the commercial break.

Thank you sooo much Jon Stewart for doing this YOU ROCK! And here is the speech:

Hi everyone. I just want to thank you so much. This is such a big deal, not only for us, but for all other independent musicians and artists that spend most of their time struggling, and this, the fact that we're standing here tonight, the fact that we're able to hold this, it's just to prove no matter how far out your dreams are, it's possible. And, you know, fair play to those who dare to dream and don't give up. And this song was written from a perspective of hope, and hope at the end of the day connects us all, no matter how different we are. And so thank you so much, who helped us along the way. Thank you.



You said it Marketa! Thank you so much for reminding this to us!

Now amiga and amigo one of those days when you feel like watching something inspirational, not pretentious, full of heart and feelings then stop by your local movie rental store and ask for ONCE. I watched this movie because of Bill. He said: Elsa I have this treasure that you must see. I watched it in our cabin at night while the kids were sleeping. Once is so real and simple, it looks like a documentary and by by the end of it I was in tears (of joy) and appreciation for the little jewel that this movie is.

Also if you want to add some unique music to your collection, the kind that will put you in a sensitive and creative mood all you need is this link. I already have my copy (we are talking about the music from the movie ONCE). Now if you get it I recommend you to go straight to tack #2 (If You Want Me) and then track#4 (When Your Mind's Made Up) I keep playing these two songs over and over, they blow me away!.

After the Oscars ceremony when people started going out I had the pleasure of giving Glen Hansard a BIG hug while Marketa was talking with their fans. He was just SO REAL AND WONDERFUL, take a look at his autogragh and see how much love he has to give to other people. You will find that love in their movie as well as in their music.


And now my friend that our OSCAR report series has reached its end I would love to add a little something to this post:

We all know that in the end every award is a human creation to recognize something remarkable that has been done. It always feels great to win awards because they give people confidence in what they do and the confirmation of how talented they are. Now, my favorite awards are those than happen in real life in the most subtle ways. I have been dying to tell you that I have gotten the most amazing award ever from my little man (Diego). Most of the time before he goes to sleep I rock him in the rocking chair in the darkness of his room for a few minutes. We have a little game where I say some simple words and he repeats them with me almost whispering. In the last days I have been teaching him how to say Natalie and he is the cutest little thing, he says something like Lalalie. Well the other night out of the blue instead of Lalalie and in his whispering little voice he slowly said Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, THREE TIMES!!!!! I had to contain myself not to ruin this magic moment, I wanted to scream but instead I just cried in silence. In that moment I really felt what is like to win an OSCAR, honestly, I felt so proud and happy and emotional, I just wanted to thank everyone for everything. I felt like a real winner, just listening to those three little words that define who I am for Diego. Those awards are the ones that really matter in the end of the day for everyone including the most famous stars. We are all human and we all find the biggest joy in the rewards that come from loving someone else.

Now I am leaving you with a BIG BIG HUG because I am SOOO HAPPY, I JUST WON MY OSCAR and it has been placed in a very special corner in my heart!!!!!

ELSITA :) (Mommy is my real name!!!)

Oscars Report! (PART THREE: Someone special)

Diablo Cody (the girl in the picture below) will be seen over and over in the next months on the Internet, in every fashion magazine, on TV, in The New York Times and everywhere. She is the Writer behind Juno, the Little Miss Sunshine film of this last Oscar edition. Diablo which means Devil in Spanish is one of the most fascinating people around and her real name is Brook Busey-Hunt. Now let me tell you why she is special.


Let's take a look at the last words that she said in tears during the acceptance of her Oscar: ...and most of all, I want to thank my family for loving me EXACTLY THE WAY I AM.
How many times do people love other people exactly the way they are? REALLY, I MEAN LITTERALY LOVING WITH NOT JUDGEMENT. Not a long time ago Diablo was a stripper, then later a blogger (she still blogs) and someone trying to find herself in life. She's a smart, creative woman and her sign is Gemini. I have a personal fascination with the sign Gemini that's why last year I made the illustration below dedicated to it:


Gemini represents one of the most complex aspects of human nature which is the need to find who we are is our landscape of multiple personalities. Somehow we all have this Gemini element present in our systems but people like Diablo Cody have it in a deeper level.
Here are some of the things that she has done in her life:

*She attended a Roman Catholic school.
*She graduated from the University of Iowa with a media studies degree.
*While at the University of Iowa, Cody was a DJ at KRUI-FM (89.7 FM)
*Her first jobs were doing secretarial work at a Chicago law firm and later proofreading copy for advertisements that played on Twin Cities radio stations.
*She started blogging.
*Cody signed up for amateur night at a Minneapolis strip club called the Skyway Lounge.
*She eventually quit her day job and took up stripping full-time.
*Cody also spent time working peep shows at Sex World, a Minneapolis adult novelty and DVD store.
*Eventually she became disillusioned with stripping and switched to phone sex before eventually returning to stripping.
*Cody soon made a retreat to more traditional employment in journalism, and a budding writing career stimulated by her skin trade days.
*While still stripping, Cody began writing for City Pages, an alternative Twin Cities weekly newspaper.
*Cody debuted as Entertainment Weekly magazine's newest Backpage columnist.
*At the age of 24, Cody wrote her memoir Candy Girl: A Year in the Life of an Unlikely Stripper.
*After completion of her book, Cody was encouraged to write her first screenplay.
*Within months she wrote Juno... and the rest is history.


Some time ago I made this other illustration called Cactus Girl dedicated to all the girls who needed to grow thorns in their skin in order to survive the desert of obstacles that they had to go through before they found themselves. Diablo Cody could be the girl in this illustration. She was one of the most genuinely happy winners on Sunday and she had all the reasons in the world for it. Before her success Diablo Cody experienced in her own skin the pain of not being in the right place in life, that's why her award tasted even sweeter than it tasted for other people because she has finally found herself in the rewards that her creative work is giving her. And here is when I would like to say that Diablo has all my respect as a woman and as an Artist and I give her a well deserved 10. This girl has NEVER EVER stopped being herself and expressing her very personal nature in the way that she needed to do it at every given moment in her life. She is and will be the target of a lot of people who will always find reasons to criticize and judge her but I won't be in that group, instead I want to say: Diablo, I also love you exactly THE WAY YOU ARE. In the end you have made of yourself the best person that you can be and that's why you deserve to enjoy your success. Go Diablo Go!!!

Have great day!
And I will be back tomorrow with more!
Elsita :)

And here you can listen to an interview with Diablo Cody.(Thank you so much Denise for letting me know about this interview!)

Oscars Report! (PART TWO)


AND HERE IT IS!!!!! The most SPECTACULAR Oscar photo ever of Bill and Elsita!!!! The only unfortunate thing is that couple filling up 99% of the picture. I cannot understand why some couples just want to steal all the attention from other couples!!! These two people (no idea who they are) decided to stand there and be the center of attention for several minutes. There is nothing to do about it, these things happen all the time :o

YAY!!!!!!! Let's give a 10 to the Indiana Jones man!!!!! I already told you the story about how I meet Harrison Ford for the first time. This man has all my admiration and respect and love for being sooo real. His partner Calista Flockhart is always polite and formal. I have never talked with her in order to get the feeling of how she is but she seems to be a great person. Thank you Calista for loving your man! And thank you Harrison for loving her back! Viva el amor!!!

Harrison Ford and I had one thing in common the night of the Oscars: we desperetely needed a glass of water! Before we all got to see each other Harrison and Calista and Bill and I walked to the same place looking for a glass of water right after we got to the second floor of the theatre. Harrison arrived two seconds before I did and got his water but when I asked for the same thing I was told that they weren't still open :o Thank you Mister Waiter, there is always the restroom where water is found in unlimited quantities! But before the restroom we shaked hands with Harrison Ford and his girl, they were looking really happy together! :)

So, after I found the source of water and came back to the big room we went to our sits and got ready for the fun spectacle. Tara Taraaaa!!! Everything started and in my opinion our host Jon Stewart was really funny. He made everyone laugh so much!


And here is when all the unexpected things start happening to some members of the audience and I am going to tell you one of them: An old man who seemed to be one of the members of the academy, sitting a few feet away from us needed to go out for a sec and on his way back he fell down and broke his front head. In less than a second two paramedics arrived with a wheelchair in order to take him away but he said NO WAY! They really tried to convince him about leaving the place but he was firm and said the word NO several times, the paramedics then realized that he wasn't going to move at all so they left promising to come back if he felt like leaving. Now the old man's companion (this beautiful girl who was probably his granddaughter) took good care of his wound and he stopped bleeding, in the end the cut was really tiny. He enjoyed the rest of the event and we were all happy for him!!! Great job old man, just because you're old it doesn't mean that they have to carry you away in a wheelchair as if you were a criminal!


Now two words about the girl up here in the picture: Cameron Diaz. She is such a GREAT dancer! When we were waiting for the show there was some energetic music playing and she was the only one in the whole place dancing, she could not resist the music and just looking at her made you want to dance too. And here I have the explanation to this: she has some Cuban blood since her father Emilio Diaz is a second generation Cuban-American. It is a very latino thing to move your body whenever there is music playing and I was happy to see that some of the musical cells from Emilio Diaz were passed to his beautiful daugher! let's give her a 10 for good dancer and for best smile too!

Now what happens during the commercial brakes? EVERYTHING HAPPENS! You get to know your neighbor; people get up and talk with each other. The stars get to say hi to their friends and hug each other and have little talks. Some people go to the restrooms. MANY people eat their snacks and MANY others feel like they are going to faint because they didn't bring anything to eat. The host makes the best jokes of the night. Little girls that come with their parents fall sleep or want to go home. People read the book that they always print for the event. Girls admire other girl's dresses... you won't believe it but many of my favorite dresses were not exactly from the stars but from other girls and I realized that most of them were vintage pieces found probably at thrift stores. Some of them were REALLY special, there was one in particular that I can still see clearly in my mind! The color was this antique pink, it's really hard to see a beautiful dress with this color that's why I was so impressed.

Now talking about the stars; these were some of my favorite dresses:

Amazing color, very subtle and smart.

So simple and elegant and fluid.

The work with the roses was AMAZING.

A work of art, sophisticated and perfect.

This one has to be seen in person, the picture doesn't make justice to it. The embroidery work was sooo beautiful!

Best shape, so feminine.

Beautiful and glamorous.

Spectacular and dramatic. It looked really amazing in motion.


And in this last picture you can see Alberto Iglesias (who got an Oscar nomination as I said before for the music that he created for The Kite Runner) and his beautiful girlfriend Cristina. She used to be a ballerina and now she goes to Film School, one day she might get her own Oscar!. And here is a nice detail: the dress that she is wearing is from Penelope Cruz! Doesn't she look beautiful! Let's give a 10 to Penelope Cruz for best friend! And another 10 to Cristina for most beautiful guest!!!

And now I have to say HASTA LUEGO!
But I will be back with more!
See you tomorrow!!!!!
Elsita :)

Oscars Report! (Today: INTRODUCTION)

Hello my friend!!!!!
And here I am with my Oscars report!!! (Part One)
As always there is so much to talk about that's why (if you don't mind) I will deliver all the information in more than one post :)

For Bill and I the Oscars started on Saturday night (just the night before the actual event) when we had dinner with our friends Dante Ferretti, Francesca Lo Schiavo and their sweet daughter at this great Japanese restaurant called Katsuya. I could not resist showing you the business card from this place, which is sooo beautiful. Not many times we find cards like this one. Take a look:


It was Francesca’s idea to go to Katsuya, she has a great taste for restaurants! The whole place is new and it looks amazing, the decoration is very modern with Japanese accents everywhere.
That night was so special! We talked with Dante and Francesca about their experience working with Tim Burton in Sweeney Todd. Everything in our conversation about Tim Burton was positive. They think that he is a true Artist and their chemistry working together was beautiful. They also said that Johnny Depp is the sweetest guy ever which is something that I hear all the time. As I mentioned before Dante Ferretti was the Art Director for Sweeney Todd and Francesca was the Set Decorator. They always work together as a team and together they were nominated for the Oscars this year! So to make the story short I am sooo happy to say that they won their awards!!! (This is the ninth Academy Award nomination for Dante and the seventh for Francesca, can you believe it?) It was just perfect and Bill and I were sooo excited jumping in our sits!! After the ceremony I got to do something that I had promised myself to do if Dante and Francesca won the awards: I lifted the two statues three times with my hands as if they were weights to see how they felt and THEY ARE SOOO HEAVY!!! It was my first Oscars workout ever :)


Up here you can see two pictures taken by Bill at the restaurant and in third tiny one there is Francesca and Dante accepting their awards! GONGRATULATIONS ITALIA!!!!!

OK, Oscars day: I had my appointment for makeup at 10:00 AM which was so early! We left the house at 4:00 PM but that was the only time when this place had some space for someone non-famous like this client called Ilsa, Elisa or Alisa (that's me, they couldn't get my name straight) so I said that's completely OK with me. The owner of this salon (a real character with the most perfect eyebrows that I have ever seen in a man!) is supposed to be a well-known makeup Artist. Someone else introduced me to him the day before while he was working with another client. He looked at me for a half second and since I didn't look like a star he loudly called one of his Assistants in training and asked him to take care of me. Let me tell you this: the whole thing was sooo funny!! His Assistant was the nicest person in the place, he setup the appointment for me and next day there I was. I could have done the makeup thing myself but I have been sooo curious to see how a real Artist does it (in this case an Artist in training :o). I wanted to experience the whole thing in person and I am glad that I did it. Our young man was great! I can say that the process was like painting on canvas (there was even an airbrush involved plus many other little tools that I have never seen before!). He enjoyed his work and it was nice seeing the transformation little by little. It took about an hour and a half to complete the job. I gave him a big THANK YOU, a deserved tip and then I went back home and that's when I put my dress on and took some pictures for you.

(Interesting detail: For a Makeup Artist in training you pay $150 and for a famous makeup Artist with perfect eyebrows you pay from $400 to I don't know how much. I am sooo glad that I went with the first option!)


I never took the dress off after the pictures because it was really comfortable to wear. At 3:30 PM the limousine arrived but we left the house at 4:00. Now the surreal part begins!!!! After a few minutes we found ourselves in this area where there were only limousines around. Hundreds of these black cars looking all the same. I would love to see how the streets looked from an helicopter (there were a couple of helicopter flying around) all the streets near the theater were closed but people were everywhere on the sidewalks asking the limousine drivers to roll down the windows, which they are not allowed to do for security reasons :o You can see the most interesting characters on the sidewalks. Many are curious people trying to get a glance of the celebrities but there is this group of funny characters performing and showing the most creative and funny signs. There was also a small group of crazy people doing crazy things like trying to get into the limousines by asking the drivers to give them a ride. They were mostly paparazzi. The security guys were always trying to keep them away from the streets.

After all this process that took about an hour we arrived in front of the Kodak Theatre where we got out of our car and walked toward a big tent. In this very moment we heard a huge ovation dedicated to the man getting out from the car in front of us and here is a picture of him and the autograph that I later asked him to sign for Deborah who is my friend Margie's daughter:


Colin Farrell, he has the reputation of being a bad boy but I have to tell you: he was so nice and natural, plus he took his Mom to the Oscars with him. How sweet is that? In the picture below we see how they looked together :) After the event was finished, when we were waiting for our cars, he ordered some hot chocolate as well as Bill and they had a little conversation, he was very friendly. When I asked him to sign the autograph he did it with a smile. We like you Colin!!!! Let's give him a 10!


Now it comes the time when we go through the metal detector so you must show your golden ticket. Here is mine:
Several days before the event you get a little book with the rules for the event. For some reason I like to read all these things from the beginning to the end. Take a look at it:






After we went through the metal detectors we had to wait in order to walk on the red carpet that is behind the real red carpet and I have a SPECTACULAR photo of Bill and I from that very moment but I will show it to you tomorrow. That photo is too important, it deserves a whole new post. Please come back tomorrow and I will be here with that photo and more details from the event!!!! There is still A LOT more to say!
Now back to real life, I have a loooong list of things to do!!!
Have a wonderful day!
Elsita :)

Come to the Oscars with Me!!!!





And here are a few photos of my Oscar dress and I! Look for me on TV in a few hours! If I am wearing a shawl later due to the low temperature you can still look for the helmet-style top of my head, which doesn't deserve to be called haircut or hairstyle. Mami, ver a ver si me ves! (Sorry for the interruption, I was talking to my Mom!) Remember, we will be behind the stars trying to stay there as long as possible. Keep an eye on the security people and see how they will keep asking our behind-the-stars group to move move move, keep moving, keep moving please. We will move a little bit but then we will come back pretending that we have to say something to someone up there... That's more or less how it works! Super silly but lots of fun!

I will be back with an Oscars report as soon as I can!
Have fun you too!
Elsita :)

Pre-Oscar Day!


Here is a picture of Bill and I from last year (my first Oscar experience). The top that I am wearing is called The Electrical Wonder. There was a cable connected from the back of it to my purse where with a simple switch I turned on the light to look as illuminated as you see me in the picture. I was a walking lamp! I AM KIDDING YOU!!! I just wanted to let you know that white is never a good choice when it comes to homemade portraits. Dark colors absorb better the light so that's a lesson that I learned last year :o :)

Another thing that I learned from the Oscar last year is that you need to bring something warm to cover yourself with. All the stars in their beautiful dresses look so amazing and comfortable but the truth is that they're dying!!! There are some heaters around but they don't really make a difference unless you are two inches close to them.

And last lesson but maybe the most important one: you better bring a nice snack in your purse because the whole event from the red carpet walk to the end of it is reeeeeally long. You don't want to faint in the middle of the show. Anyway, in the event that something like that happens not to worry, there are special nice people ready to fill up your sit while someone else takes you to the hospital. At the Oscars everything is already figured out! Whatever happens it happens but the show must go on!!!!

And today we are attending the Spirit Awards!!! That's a very special event dedicated to independent films and film makers.

I will be back tomorrow for a second before we leave to the Oscars!
Have a wonderful Saturday!
Elsita :)

A Flower in the Darkness.







Good morning my friend!
And here is my dress for the Oscars and the accessories that will go with it! I could write a lot about how I made this dress but instead I would like to point that the little floral embroidery on the belt (made with silk ribbon, thread, crystals and an antique purple cabochon) is what brings this whole piece to life, like a flower blooming in the darkness. This dress is entirely dedicated to my hubby Bill who, in my opinion, is like a rare flower blooming in the middle of the dark and difficult landscape that Hollywood is.

Bill, as I have said before, is one of the most inspiring creative people that I have ever meet in my life and through him I have learned so many amazing things. Through Bill I have learned how to appreciate artistic quality, I have learned how to enjoy movies and how to become a better person thought the lessons that they teach to me. Today from my little position in this modest blog I want to invite you to think about the film world and the Oscars in a completely different way.

Through movies we learn about other cultures and about ourselves. Movies make us think and cry and smile and laugh and experience the most amazing feelings. Films can change who we are, they are like open doors to worlds and things that we wouldn’t know about otherwise. On Sunday I invite you to enjoy what really matters behind the Oscars, which is talent, imagination and creativity. I invite you to think that behind all the illusion that glamour and gold and fame is there are lots of real people like Bill that deeply believe in creating meaningful films that have something important to say to the rest of us. Let’s celebrate movies and let’s give them the place that they deserve in our lives.

I am so excited about attending this event on Sunday.
I will be celebrating with Bill and our friends and I will be sharing everything with you afterwards!
Please join me in this adventure!!

Elsita :)

The Dress is Finished! :o :)

Good Morning! And good news! My dress for the Oscars is finished!
I will show you a photo of it tomorrow plus a little drawing of how it looks from the back. The design of this dress is simple that's why it looks better on the "model" but tomorrow you will have a general idea of how it looks like. Then I will make sure that Bill takes a picture of me on Sunday so you can see it better later. And here are a few interesting details about the the event on Sunday:


Jon Stewart will be host, I'm sure that he will be funny :).


In this picture you can have a general idea about the "anatomy" of the red carpet. First there is a line of official photographers doing their job. Next there is the red carpet which is exclusive for the nominees and the celebrities that have been invited to the event. Then, behind the red carpet there is another carpet for the rest of the people connected to the movies, members of the Academy, relatives etc. Look for Bill and I over there in that group. And then there is a stage with a number of fans asking for autographs (that's a great group because they will really be having fun, the rest of the people are mostly working, including the stars).
Two of Bill's movies got nominations this year:
The Kite Runner: Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score. Alberto Iglesias)
Lars and the Real Girl: Original Screenplay (Nancy Oliver)
So Alberto Iglesias (Go Spain!) and Nancy Oliver will be walking on the red carpet.

Did you know that the nomination for Best Motion Picture or Best Film is the most important one and it goes to the Film Producer? It's always the last award of the night. I had no idea about this before I met Bill. You can learn more about it here.

And next we have the list of the presenters that you will see on Sunday:

Amy Adams
Jessica Alba
Cate Blanchett
Josh Brolin
Steve Carel
George Clooney
Penelope Cruz
Miley Cyrus
Patrick Dempsey
Cameron Diaz
Colin Farrell
Harrison Ford
Jennifer Garner
Tom Hanks
Anne Hathaway
Katherine Heigl
Jonah Hill
Dwayne Johnson
Nicole Kidman
James McAvoy
Queen Latifah
Seth Rogen
Martin Scorsese
Hilary Swank
John Travolta
Denzel Washington
Renee Zellweger
Alan Arkin
Jennifer Hudson
Helen Mirren
Forest Whitaker

Take a look at the nominees.

And here is the list of international broadcasters.

One of our closest friends in Hollywood and (in my opinion) one of the most remarkable Art Directors ever has been nominated (again!!) for an Oscar and I am sure that we will spend most of the time with him and his wife Francesca who I adore. When the four of us get together there is for sure lots of laughter and fun! They are both from Italy (go Italia!). Our friend's name is Dante Ferretti and he was the Art Director of Sweeney Todd. We already told him that bloody films are not our number one thing but there is no doubt that the whole visual job that he did for this movie is truly remarkable. One day I will be talking more about the important role of an Art Director in films.
This is a photo of Dante and I (Watch for him! I hope that he wins!!!!)


And now I am going back with the "kiddies"!
Have a wonderful day!
And see you tomorrow!
Elsita :)

Quick Report!

O - glowing Pastry Cutter S c A R s


A L M o Wooden Tile S T

f I_McElman_070718_2970 N I T O

Yay!!! My dress for the Oscars is almost finished!!! And my voice is coming back!!!! And I just found this place where you can spell words with pictures! How cool is that?! As you can see good things are happening!!! Now I go back to my best friend in these days: Mister Ginger Tea! Lalala la la lalala lala!!!!
See you tomorrow!!!
Elsita :)