Jessica Chastain says she may pass on doing Oscars red carpet press to show solidarity with Hollywood’s artisans, including the nominated Tea Eyes of Tammy Faye makeup team, at the March 27 ceremony.
During a recent interview for The Next Best Picture podcast, the best actress nominee said she would sit out preshow press if it interfered with her ability to support the Tammy Faye makeup and hair team during the ceremony’s first, untelevised, full hour.
“I will absolutely be present when the makeup category is being called, and if that means I’m not doing press on the red carpet for ABC or whatever it is, then so be it,” she said. “The most important thing for me is to honor the incredible artisans who work in our industry.”
She went on to say that while above-the-line talent like actors is typically seen as “the face” of a performance, it’s the work of those in a film’s makeup and hair departments that makes a performance.
“So much attention is on the actor. We’re like the face in some way because you go to a movie and see us,” she explained. “But a lot of people don’t understand how beyond an actor a performance is.”
Chastain’s comments follow fighting within the Academy after it announced that the 94th annual ceremony would present eight categories before the live telecast. Instead, the winners of those categories will receive their awards and deliver their speeches in the same way as the live-televised categories, but will have their recorded acceptance speeches edited and included as clips during the live show.
The Academy has promised the Oscars ceremony will begin with everyone in their seats inside the Dolby Theater by 4 pm PT, but one governor who spoke to THR was cautious about whether that would be the reality. Since the announcement, high-profile Hollywood talent like directors Steven Spielberg and Guillermo del Toro have publicly supported the eight categories returning to the live telecast.
The decision to pretape categories was reportedly a result of an ABC network demand that would have seen the Oscars live telecast canceled unless categories were removed to shorten the show’s runtime. In addition to makeup and hair, sound, filming editing, original score, production design and the three shorts categories — documentary, animated and live-action — will be honored in the show’s first, non-televised, hour.