i Editor's Letter: Every industry has awards


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The Independent Online


Thanks to all who wrote in saying kind things about our Newspaper of the Year nomination.

We’ve only been shortlisted, mind. I must ready a fixed smile for display should the Daily Mail’s Paul Dacre get the nod. I call it “George’s grin”, named for Mr Clooney, arguably the world’s leading heartthrob. That’s “arguably”, because Charlotte, i’s Geordie art director, is the office authority on such matters.

Her concise view of Gorgeous George is: “minging”. By the time you read this you will probably have seen George’s grin at last night’s Oscars as The Artist cleaned up. You’ll have seen it all this morning — unless you are one of those weird people who stays up to watch it live in the dead of night. George had switched the grin on full beam at our own Baftas the other week, as The Artist’s Jean Dujardin beat him to Best Actor. George gets a lot of practice.

Every industry has awards. There’s no endeavour too obscure that it does not merit a black-tie dinner. There are even the antiawards like the Razzies and the one for Bad Sex writing. There is a difference with the Oscars, however — rather like the Grammys, and to a lesser degree the Turner and Booker prizes, victory can really change your “box office”. The low-budget King’s Speechtook a total of £252m on the back of its Best Picture award. Sometimes, mere participation on the night will do. Adele’s annus mirabilis was built on her show stopping “Someone Like You” performance at the 2011 Brits.

So, writing in advance, I wish The Descendants and The Help well, but I’ve a sneaking suspicion George will have been practising a grin of which a silent movie artist would be proud.