Analytic Vision

Live Blogging about the Oscars Ceremony 2016

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 29/02/2016

Like I did on the 23rd of February 2015 with the article “Live Blogging about the Oscars Ceremony 2015“, I will write this post on my blog in real time, as I watch the free live streaming of the 88th ceremony of the Academy Awards from Los Angeles, California, USA, using this link:

This year, the oscars presentation is going to follow the film producing process

Emily Blunt & Charlize Theron present the oscar for original screenplay

 Tom McCarthy dedicates this award to all journalists. The orchestra intervienes

Ryan Gosling & Russell Crowe present the award for adapted screenplay. Ryan Gosling jokes: “between the two of us, there are 2 Oscars”

 Chris Rock jokes about the difficulty for black actors to get awards, but also to get roles. We have a pastiche with him appearing in Joy, The Revenant, The Danish Girl, The Martian.

Stacey Dash present “Happy Black History Month”.

Sarah Silverman presents first song from a film: “Writing’s on the Wall” from Spectre – Music and Lyric by Jimmy Napes and Sam Smith . Interpreted by Sam Smith

Alicia Vikander wins the Oscar for best supporting actress – The Danish Girl as Gerda Wegener

Scott carrell and Tina Fey present the oscar forBest Production Design

Margot Robbie and Jared Leto present Oscar for Best Makeup and Hairstyling

Benicio Del Toro and Jennifer Garner present the movies The Revenant, Mad Max: Fury Road.

Liev Schreiber presents the Oscar for Best Film Editing

Margaret Sixel says that Mad Max: Fury Road is the best reviewed movie of the year, everzbody loved it.

George Miller says Mad Max is a movie you see with ears. Sound artists are storytellers.

Chris Jenkins – third win, 5th nomination, Gregg Rudloff, third win, 7th nomination, Ben Osmo – 1st win, 1st nomination

Andy Serkis presents the Oscar for special visual effects: we can create any worls we want

Best Visual Effects

the visual effects are a game very oriented towards team playing

Olivia Munn presents the scientifical and technical awards.

The robots from Star Wars: R2D2, Three Threepio and BB8 appear on screen.

The Minions Kevin, Stuart & Bob (voiced by Pierre Coffin) present the Oscar for animated short film

First Oscar for Chile nationals.

Buzz Lightyear and Woody from Toy Story present the Oscar for best animated feature.

For Pete Docter, it’s the 8th nomination and 2nd Oscar after Up.

“We are lucky because we can make stuff”. Pete Docter encouraged the children to create stuff, to express themselves. He sayed inside out is inspired from watching their kids growing up.

Patricia Arquette presents the Oscar for

Steven Spielberg leads with love. That’s why he is surrounded by so many people who love to work with him.

Louis C.K. presents the Oscar for Best Documentary – Short Subject

“You cannot make a dime on this” – This Oscar really means something, because the people making these movies don’t get rich. He jokes: The winner is “Mad Max”.

The 2nd Oscar for Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy. This is a militant film for women’s rights that managed to influence policy makers.

Dev Patel and Diasy Riley present the Oscar for Best Documentary – Feature

This is to show who Amy Winehouse really was, not the image. Chris Rock jokes that the people who made Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom are going to hate listening to her music from now on.

Chris Rock insults the Weinstein brothers for not participating with donations for Girls scouts’ cookies.

Whoopi Goldberg presents the honorary governors’ awards: Gena Rowlands, Spike Lee. The Jean Hearsolt humanitary award is won by Debbie Reynolds.

Cheryl Boone Isaacs, president of AMPAS says tonight is a time to talk about the future. With the opportunity, comes responsability. Diversity is important. We have to accurately reflect the world today. There is a message for inclusion meant to make us all stronger. Each must play a role of influence. It’s not enough to listen and agree. We must act, she says. This is a chance to make a future all of them can be proud.

Louis Gossett, jr presents In Memoriam

Ettore Scola, Alan Rickman, Haskell Wexler, Karolyn Ali, Tex Rudloff, Richard Collis, Alex Rocco, Kirk Kevorkian, Bob Minkler, D.W. Samuelson, James Horner, Wes Craven, Frank. D. Gilroy, js Elmo Williams, Roger L. Mayer, Alber Maysles, Rh Glatzer, David Bowie, Vilmos Zsigmond, Leonard Nimoy are some of the people who died in the past year.

Quincy Jones presents the Oscar for music – Best Original Score

Ennio Morricone says a speech in Italian and acknowledges the nomination of John Williams, thanks to Quentin Tarantino and dedicates this award to his wife, Maria.

 One of them is gay and dedicates this award to the LGBMT community around the world.

JJ Abrams presents the Oscar for Best Director

The excerpts feature interviews with the directors talking about their movies.

Eddie Redmayne  presents the Oscar for Best Actress

Julianne Moore presents the Oscar for Best Actor

Thank you for creating a transcending cinematic experience, he says, to A.G. Inarritu. Leo DiCaprio attracts attention about climat change – the movie is about man’s connection to the nature. We need to talk to the world leaders and take action, he says. Everybody applauds standing.

Morgan Freeman presents the Oscar for the producers:Best Picture

 Chris Rock closes the night with the inviataion for every Oscar winner to come to the scene. He also reminds everyone about the Girls Scouts’ thing.

So, if we are to take into consideration the number of awards and nominations, the biggest winners for this year’s edition of the Academy Awards are, in order:

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (6/10) Oscars for: film editing, costume design, makeup and hairstyling, sound mixing, sound editing and production design. Nominations for: best feature, directing, cinematography and visual effects.
  2. The Revenant (3/12) Oscars for: directing, leading actor, cinematography. Nominations for: best feature, supporting actor, film editing, costume design, makeup and hairstyling, sound mixing, sound editing, visual effects, production design
  3. Spotlight (2/6) Oscars for best feature and original screenplay. Nominations for supporting actor, saupporting actress, direction and film editing.
  4. Bridge of Spies (1/6) Oscar for supporting actor. Nominations for best feature, original screenplay, music, sound mixing and production design
  5. The Big Short (1/6) Oscar for original screenplay. Nominations for best feature, supporting actor, diresction and film editing.
  6. Room (1/4) Oscar for leading actress. Nominations for best feature, adapted screenplay and direction.
  7. The Danish Girl (1/4) Oscar for supporting actress. Nominations for leading actor, costume design and production design.
  8. The Hateful Eight (1/3) Oscar for music. Nominations for cinematography and supporting actress.
  9. Ex Machina (1/2) Oscar for visual effects. Nomination for original screenplay

9. Inside Out (1/2) Oscar for animated feature. nomination for original screenplay.

The biggest losers of the event were:

  1. The Martian – 7 nominations: best feature, leading actor, adapted screenplay, sound mixing, sound editing, visual effects, production design
  2. Carol – 6 nominations: leading actress, supporting actress, adapted screenplay, cinematography, costume design, music
  3. Brooklyn – 3 nominations: best feature, leading actress, adapted screenplay
  4. Sicario – 3 nominations: music, cinematography, sound mixing
  5. Steve Jobs – 2 nominations: leading actor, supporting actress

Thank you for following my posts. That’s all for this year, folks!


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Live Blogging about the Oscars Ceremony 2015

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 23/02/2015

Like I did on the 12th of January 15 with the article “Live Blogging for the the Golden Globes 2015“, I will write this post on my blog in real time, as I watch the free live streaming of the 87th ceremony of the Academy Awards from Los Angeles, California, USA, using these two links:

One of the hashtags on Twitter is #askhermore because it invites the reporters to ask more questions than those about clothes.

19 nominations – Meryl Streep’s Oscar record, more than any person.

Julianne Moore’s 5th nomination at the Oscars. Alzheimer is the 6th cause of death, it’s a very important thing to illustrate how people are affected by it and their families, it’s really a great cause.

Melanie Griffith is very proud of her daughter, Dakota Johnson, but she doesn’t want to see her last movie, Fifty Shades of Gray. Everybody talks about Johnson’s red dress.

Marion Cotillard says she likes deep characters, like Sandra from Two Days One Night.

Channing Tatum has been part of the process of selecting the 6 college students, “Team Oscar” who made each a 60 seconds short and were deemed the best among tens of thousands of participants of USA.

Reese Witherspoon says working on “Wild” has been a scary experience that helped her grow. She talks about the 44 women nominated this year at the Oscars. She wants to bring more important roles for women.

Many people ask, where does the moniker The Oscars come from? According to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), the origins of the name are unclear, but “a popular story has been that an Academy librarian and eventual executive director, Margaret Herrick, thought it resembled her Uncle Oscar and said so; and that the Academy staff began referring to it as Oscar.”

Emma Stone is a big Mark Ruffalo fan.

Ethan Hawke says the success of the movie has overwhelmed them, they surpassed everybody’s expectations. It’s the end of a 13 years job. He says he feels like a gentle pirate, feeling like they weren’t supposed to be here. I agree :)

Clara Kyle, the wife of Chris Kyle is present to support American Sniper, where she appears as a character. It’s a movie which really opens up a dialog in the couples affected by war, she says.

Neil Patrick Harris says we are here to honor the widest brightest actors. He sings to the movies. Anna Kendrick as Cindirella accompanies him. Jack Black joins in to creat a rock moment. The 8 pictures nominated grossed more than 600 million $.

Lupita Nyong’O presents the award for best supporting actor J.K. Simmons for Whiplash. Some poeple applaud standing. He thanks to his wife, Michelle Schumacher than to his children. Tell to your parents how much you love them.

Neil Patrick Harris has his predictions in a briefcase he put Octavia Spencer to watch.

Liam Neeson presents The Grand Budapest Hotel and American Sniper.

Dakota Johnson presents “Lost Stars” from “Begin Again” sang by Maroon5.

Jennifer Lopez presents award for costume design Milena Canonero – The Grand Budapest 4th Oscar and 9th nomination for Milena Canonero. Thanks to Wes.

Reese Witherspoon presents the Oscar for make up. Frances Hannon and Mark Coulier for the Grand Budapest Hotel. First nomination and oscar for her, 2nd nomination and Oscar for him, after The Iron Lady. She thanks Bill Murray for introducing her to Wes Anderson.

Channing Tatum presents the Team Oscar project.

Nicole Kidman and Chwtel Ejiofor present award for foreign language film Ida by Pawel Pawlikowski. He feels surprised and thanks lots of people.

Shirley MacLaine presents Boyhood and The Theory of Everything and Birdman or (the Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance).

Marion Cotillard presents song Teagan Sara and the Lonely Island – “Everything is Awesome” from Lego Movie.

Kerry Washington and Jason Bateman present the best live action short film Mat Kirby and James Lucas – The Phone Call. Their 1st Oscar. Movies are not made by money, but by determination. Thanks to all people who voulnteered and contributed without being paied. Mat Kirby mentions the donut shop that will be giving him a free donut a day for life.

Best Documentary Short subject Ellen Goosenberg Kent and Dana Perry Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1.  Dana perry’s sone killed himself -she said we should talk more about suicide.

Viola Davis, 2 times nominee presents the Governor’s Award – a lifetime of inspirational achievements. Maureen O’Hare, Jean-Claude Carriere, Harry Belafonte and Hayao Myiazaki have received the awards.

Gwyneth Paltrow presents Glen Campbell’s song. I’m not gonna miss you by Tim McGrath from the documentary “Glen Campbell…I’ll Be Me”. The composer’s last song to tell the dear ones how much he’ll be affecte by Alzheimer’s.

Neil Patrick Harris comes in underwear on the stage. Miles Teller presents the Scientific and Technical Awards.

Chris Evans and Sienna Miller present the sound mixing and sound editing awards.

Best Sound Mixing: Whiplash – Craig Mann, Ben Wilkins and Thomas Curley.  They thank Damian Chazelle, great leader.

Best Sound Editing> American Sniper – Alan Robert Murray and Bub Asman – they previously won for Letters from Iwo Jima.

Jared Leto presents the Oscar for best supporting actress. Patricia Arquette for Boyhood. Everybody applauds standing. She thanks her friends for making the world a better place. She strives for the rights of the women to equal rights.

Josh Hutchinson presents Rita Ora who performs the song “Grateful” from “Beyond the Lihghts” written by Diane Warren.

Chloe Grace Moretz presents the awrd for visual effects Paul Franklin, Andrew Lockley, Ian Hunter and Scott Fisher for Interstellar.

Kevin Hart and Anna Kendrick present the best animated short film. Feast – Patrick Osborn and Kristina Reed. She thanks her kids for the many nights they let her miss in order to proceed with her “crazy career”.

Zoe Saldana and Dwayne Johnson present best animated feature. Don Hall, Chris Williams and Roy Conli for Big Hero 6.

Sheryl Boone-Isaacs president of AMPAS says film is an universal language. Filmmakers have the responsability to make sure that every voice is heard, to protect freedom of expression. We honor the courage of filmmakers who encourage us to see the world around us in new ways. She thanks filmmakers around the world.

Chris Pratt and Felicity Jones present production design award: Adam Stockhausen (2nd nomination) and Anna Pinnock (5th nomination) for The Grand Budapest Hotel. Their 1st Oscar.

Idris Elba and Jessica Chastain present the Oscar for cinematography Emmanuel Lubezki – Birdman Or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance).

Meryl Streep presents in memoriam.

Naomi Watts and Benedict Cumberbatch present the award for film editing: John Cross for Whiplash. Thanks assistant film editors.

Terence Howard presents Whiplash. He is blown away by emotion. Then he presents The Imitation Game, then Selma.

Jennifer Anniston and David Oyelowo present awards for documentary. Citizenfour – Laura Poitras, Mathilde Bonnefoy and Dirk Wilutzky wins for best documentary feature.

Octavia Spencer presents the song from Selma, “Glory” – John Legend and Common – music and lyrics by John Stephens and Lonnie Flynn

Everybody applauds standing. This year we remember there have been 50 years since Martin Luther King jr. has ben killed.

Steve O’Reimas is the orchestra conductor for this evening.

Adeena Menzel presents John Travolta who she introducts like “Glom Gazingo”. They present the award for best original song Glory. Everybody applauds standing.  Lonnie first thanks first God. He mentions “sexual orientation” as a difference similar to race. John says there are more color persons in correctional/detention facilities then were people in slavery 2 centuries ago.

Scarlett Johansson presents the musical film which won the Oscar for best film and 4 others 49 years ago. It was presented to the public in 1965. She presents Lady Gaga who sings “The Sound of Music” and other songs from this movie. Julie Andrews enters the stage and is applauded by everyone standing. Julie Andrews awards the Oscar for achievement in music written for motion pictures (original score)> Alexandre Desplat for The Grand Budapest Hotel – 1st win, 8th nomination.

Up until now, The Grand Budapest Hotel and Whiplash seem to be most awarded films of the night. J.K. Simmons’ prediction that Whiplash will make a “clean sweep” has been correct until now, as Whiplash didn’t lose in any category yet.

Eddie Murphy> “If it’s not on the page, it’s not on the stage”. He presents the award for original screenplay Birdman Or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance): Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Nicolas Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris jr, Armando Bo.

Oprah Winfrey presents the Oscar for adapted sceenplay. Graham Moore – The Imitation Game. His speech pro LGBTM is applauded standing.

Ben Affleck presents the award for film direction: Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu for Birdman Or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance). Ego loves competition. Someone wins means someone loses. Artists’ work is measured by time, cannot be labeled and judged.

Cate Blanchett presents the award for best actor in a leading role. Eddie Redmayne for The Theory of Everything.

Matthew McConaughey presents the award for best actress. Julianne Moore for Still Alice. She is applauded standing. “I read an article that was saying winning an Oscar prolongs your life by 5 years, which is great, because my husband is younger than me”.

Sean Penn, 2 times award winner presents the Oscar for best film> Birdman or (the Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)> Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, John Lesher and James W. Skotchdopole. The speech of Inarritu is centered on the thankfulness of immigrants, especially Mexican immigrants to USA which granted them with the equality of rights to which any American is entitled. He also noted this is the 2nd year in a row when a Mexican wins for Best Director.

This year’s biggest winners of the Oscars

1. Birman Or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) – 4 awards> best picture, best directing, best original screenplay, best cinematography out of 9 nominations

2. The Grand Budapest Hotel – 4 awards > costume design, makeup and hairstyling, music, production design, out of 9 nominations.

3. Whiplash – 3 awards > actor in a supporting role, film editing, sound mixing out of 5 nominations

Biggest losers:

1. Foxcatcher – 5 nominations> actor in a supporting role, actor in aleading role, directing, original screenplay and makeup and hairsyling 0 wins.

2. Mr Turner – 4 nominations> cinematography, costume design, music, production design 0 wins

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Live Blogging for the the Golden Globes 2015

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 12/01/2015

I am watching the USA Golden Globes on live streaming from this address:

If that breaks from time to time, check this also:

Check the winners’ list here.

Check the presenters’ list here.

The NBC hosts have already started to hunt all the news of the glamour and especially the dresses on the Red Carpet.

Amy Poehler and Tina Fey host the show and they are the expected with great curiosity by the NBC hosts.

Michelle Monaghan, first time nominee in TV is very happy to celebrate today one year since her show (True detective) started. If it wins, it’s gonna be a double celebration.

Dave Karger comments this year there are more intimate stories films, compared to the survival theme from last year. J.K. Simmons (Whiplash) and Patricia Arquette (Boyhood) are expected to win the supporting roles categories. George Clooney receiving the Cecil B. The Mille award for the whole career is expected to have a great speech speech addressed to the nominees.

Robert Duvall speaks about the role from The Judge. An intense experience, very concentrated. The got the indie feeling on the set.

David Duchovny is presenting best actor in a TV drama. David has a novel coming out soon.

Naomi Watts is presenting Birdman and Liev Schrieber starred in thwo comedies (Birdman and St. Vincent). He is nominated in the TV section. They are together.

4 of the 5 comedy series nominated tonight are nominated for the 1st time.

Reese Whitherspoon is next to the real character she’s playing in Wild: Sheryl. She got nominated for acting.

Maggie and Jake Gylenhaal are both nominated this year.

Edward Norton, nominated for Birdman, won in 1997 for his debut film, Primal Fear.

Bill Murray is a double nominee this year at the

Helen Mirren is wearing the free speech symbol.

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler aree hosting the Golden Globes for the 3rd and last time.

Mark Ruffalo is a double nominee but he doesn’t expect to win any. He thinks it’s not fair to ask for which show he prefers to win.

Kevin Hart can’t believe he’s presenting an award tonight. He’s very enthusiastic.

Michael Keaton has the 2ns Golden Globe nomination. He’s pround of the movie “Birdman”.

Amy Adams, nominated for her role in “Big Eyes” talks about how she changed her perspective while playing the character. She is friend with other nominees.

The shooting for JK Simmons’s film Whiplash lasted for 18 days.

Patricia Arquette has the 4th GG nomination. She seems kinda fatigued.

Steve Carrell (7th GG nomination, 1 win in past) is known best as a comedy actor. It’s great to be nominated for drama.

David Oyelowo approached his role as Marthin Luther King in Selma as a man first of all. The actor’s job is to make the character 3D.

“Patricia Arquette is a woman who proves there are still roles for women over 40 as long as they get hired before that” Amy Poehler

“Birthdays are what people celebrate when they accept they’ve aged” Tina Fey

Tina makes a very friendly joke on George Clooney’s wife.

“Selma is the movie about the righs for colour people and now everything’s fine ald alright” Tina Fey

Whoever raises the hand gets to present with Jennifer Anniston. Benedict Cumberbatch gets on the scene. They present the first award.Best supporting actor in a film. Winner: JK Simmons – Whiplash. Thanks the director, the lead actor, Jason Writeman, Helen Estherbrook, Sony Classics, Steven Hirsch (agent), wife.

Dakota Johnson and Amy Dorman present the award for


Joanne Froggatt – Downton Abbey- season 4, 1st nomination and award.

Jeremy Renner presents



“These days you can get in trouble for saying anything, so I’m gonna say just: Thank you”

Billy Bob Thornton

Naomi Watts presents the film: Birdman

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are really making fun of North Korea. :))

Colin Firth presents “The Imitation Game”


Gina is very emotioned. She cries. “Today’s a great day. I can. And I did”



The show’s producer, Jill Solloway accepts the award on bahalf of the team. The show, which approaches the theme of the trangender persons, has been co-produced with Amazon. She thanks Jeff  Bezos.

Melissa McCarthy presents the film “St. Vincent”. An unlikely friendship and mentorship about seeing the good in others.

Sienna Miller and Vince Vaughn present award for best music Johann Johannsson – The Theory Of Everything

Best Original Song – Motion Picture: Selma – Glory.

Seth Meyers and Katie Holmes present


Lots of people applaud standing for Matt Bomer – The Normal Heart winner. It’s a movie about gay propaganda.

Clive Owen presents “The Theory of Everything”

Ricky Gervais presents


She thanks the man who would never silence her voice. The thanks the many female models she has in the audience. She flet not prepared for winning the award for this role.

Kevin Hart and Salma Hayek present  the BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM How To Train Your Dragon 2. Accepting the award Dean DeBlois

Kate Hudson presents Into the Woods.

Jared Leto presents


Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader present the awards for BEST SCREENPLAY Alejandro González Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris and Armando Bo – Birdman

Jack Black presents Boyhood. He says the film was filmed in 12 weeks over 12 years.

Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin present the BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A TELEVISION SERIES – COMEDY OR MUSICAL Jeffrey Tambor – Transparent 1st win and nomination. Everybody applauds standing. “This is big. This is begger than me. Thanks for putting us on the map”. He dedicates the award to the transgender community.

Lupita Nyong’o and Colin Farrell present BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM Leviathan Andrey Zvyagintsev  – director and Alexander Rodnyansky  – producer

Adrien Brody and Kate Beckinsale present BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MINI-SERIES OR MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION Maggie Gyllenhaal – The Honorable Woman

She says the comments on the fact there are many roles lately for “strong women” in TV. These are actually roles for actual women: women who are sometimes strong, sometimes not. Sometimes honorable, sometimes not.

Paul Rudd and Adam Levine present BEST TELEVISION SERIES – DRAMA The Affair. The whole crew present gets up on the scene. This was an unexpected award. Sarah Treem holds a long thank you speech.

Catherine Zeta-Jones presents Pride.

David Duchovny presents the BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A TELEVISION SERIES – DRAMA Kevin Spacey – House Of Cards. 1st win and 8th nomination. Kevin Spacey: “This is just the beginning of my revenge […] This is the 8th time I’ve been nominated. I cant fucking believe I won”. He wanted to be better.

Julianna Margulies and Don Cheadle present George Clooney who accept the Cecil B DeMille award for entire career. George has been always true to himself. True artist, has been nominated at the Golden Globe more than anyone else. Everybody applauds standing. “Thank you for supporting small films”. For nominees: “You get to do what you always get to do and get appreciated for that.” “It’s a wonderful thing to find someone to love”.

Owen Wilson presents The Grand Budapest Hotel.

Harrison Ford presents the directing award: Richard Linklater – Boyhood. A personal film that made the connection. We’re all flawed in this world. Thanks families across the world.

Anna Faris and Chris Pratt (married) present BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A TELEVISION SERIES – DRAMA Ruth Wilson – The Affair

Amy Adams presents the award for BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE – COMEDY OR MUSICAL  Michael Keaton – Birdman. Almost everybody applauds standing. Thanks the Hollywood Foreign Press they have a category for comedy. He tells the story of his family – how his mother took care of all his 6 brothers. His father worked 2 jobs constantly. “Cry and give them quotes”

Oprah Winfrey presents Selma.

Chaning Tatum presents Foxcatcher.

Robert Downey Jr. presents BEST MOTION PICTURE – COMEDY OR MUSICAL The Grand Budapest Hotel. Wes Anderson accepts the award trying to pronnounce the many names of some of the people from the Hollywood Foreign Press who decided in his favor.

Matthew McConaughey presents BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA Julianne Moore, Still Alice

Gwyneth Paltrow presents BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA Eddie Redmayne – The Theory Of Everything. Had to cut his honeymoon short with Hannah in order to participate at the gala.

Meryl Streep says we’re gonna miss Amy and Tina. She presents

BEST MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA Boyhood. Jonathan Sehring producer takes the speech.

Memorable speeches: George Clooney, Michael Keaton

Directed by

Louis j. Horwitz.

Written by

Barry Adelman

Dedicated tot the memory of Bob Bardo

Top winners in cinema section:

1. Boyhood- best drama, actor, director

2. Birdman – screenplay, actor

3. The Theory of Everything – actor, music





Posted in Events / Meet me at..., Film | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Live Blogging about the Oscars Ceremony 2014

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 03/03/2014

Like I did on the 13th of January 2014 with the article “Live Blogging for the the Golden Globes 2014“, I will write this post on my blog in real time, as I watch the free live streaming of the 86th ceremony of the Academy Awards from Los Angeles, California, USA, using these two links:

Suzy Besinger costume desgner for Blue Jasmine talks about how the bag was fundamental for Cate Blanchett’s character. The bag is almost a character. That bag is a protection shield. The character of Jasmine clinges on the accesories that Suzy designed and they spent a lot of time with attention to that.

Matthew McConaughey came with his wife and his mother. This is about the experience of being here, nominated, for the very first time. He cannot know if he might be here again, so he intends to make the more of it and have fun.

Producers Craig Zaiden and Neil Meron have organized a contest in which the 6 winners would come on the Oscars stage to help as volonteers with the organizers. The winners were chosen by film essays they wrote.

Lara and Jess from ABC present the show on TV.

Ellen DeGeneres is the host of the big ceremony.

She says that she was presenter 7 years ago. She says that back then, Martin Scorsese, Leo DiCaprio, Meryl Streep and Cate Blanchett were nominated. She mentions some of the first time nominees. Theme for this years’ ceremony is “Heroes in Hollywood”. Movies are used as inspiration. If people don’t have love and family and friendship and if people donb’t get those, they get into showbusiness, she says.

It’s an exceptional year for movies. Her has been nominated, and by that, she means Meryl Streep – 18 nominees. Ellen Degeneres says it’s gonna be The Hunger Games.

She mentions that Jennifer Lawrence tripped on the red carpet. Because she is in danger of tripping, maybe if she wins, they should bring the Oscar to her, not her come to the stage.

June Squibb is the oldest actress ever nominated – 88 years old.

Jonah Hill nominated again -nice surprise.

The best joke of the entire evening, in my opinion: “Possibility nr. 1 12 Years a slave wins best picture. Possibility 2. You’re all rasists”.

Anne Hathaway presents Oscar for best supportung actor. Jared Leto for Dallas Buyers Club (2013). He is so proud to have been nominated among such great actors. He tells a story about a girl, a highschool dropout with the second child. She inspired her children to be special. “Thank you for teaching me to dream, mom”. He dedicates to all the dreamers like Venezuela and Ukraine. He tanks his brother and tot he entire team. This is for 35 millions people who died of AIDS. He makes a statement pro-homosexuals.

Ellen DeGeneres. presents Jim Carrey who presents a video collage . He mentions his friend Bruce Dern. He does an imitation of him. He presents a colage of animated films thorughoput the history

Carrie Washington introduces the songfrom Despicable Me 2 (2013): Pharrell Williams( “Happy”)

Samuel L. Jackson and Naomi Watts presents the Oscars for costume design The Great Gatsby (2013): Catherine Martin

It’s her 3rd Oscar. He got her first 2 for costume design and art direction of “Moulin Rouge”. A very Australian presentation.

Best Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling Dallas Buyers Club (2013): Adruitha Lee, Robin Mathews

Their first Oscar., They are happy to have had the possibility to say this story about how AIDS was in the ’80s

American Hustle, Dallas Buyers Club, The Wolf of Wall Street get presented by Harrison Ford. All these have in common blood.

Channing Tatum has been part of the process of selecting the 6 college students, “Team Oscar” who made each a 60 seconds short and were deemed the best among tens of thousands of participants of USA.

At the ceremony are present the real Captain Phillips and the real Philomena.

Kim Novak from Vertigo and Matthew McConaughey present awards for animation. Total freedom, anything goes, pure creativity – specific for animation.

Best Short Film, Animated Mr Hublot (2013): Laurent Witz, Alexandre Espigares

Their 1st Oscar, their 1st film. This Oscar hat goes to France for tonight.

Best Animated Feature Film of the Year Frozen (2013). Chris Buck is at his first Oscar and second nomination. The 3 winners make a brief speech.

Sally Field – everyday quite act of heroism push back and their stories get told and illuminate and inspires us to be human. She presents a collage of feature films based on real stories of heroes.

Emma Watson and Joseph Gordon Lewitt present Oscar for visual effects: Gravity (2013): Timothy Webber, Chris Lawrence, David Shirk, Neil Corbould

VFX is all about the team, says Corbould, who also won for Gladiator. He makes a very polite speech on behalf of all. He thanks the families of all VFX artist families.

Zac Efron introduces another song: Her (2013): Karen O(“The Moon Song”)

Best Short Film, Live Action film under 40 mins Helium (2014): Anders Walter KIm Magnusson

1st Oscar for Anders Walter. 2nd win and 5th nomination for KIm Magnusson. They thank their families.

Best Documentary, Short Subject The Lady In Number 6 Music Saved My Life (2013): Malcolm Clarke, Carl Freed

2nd win for Malcolm Clarke. The character of the film was 110 years and died a week ago. She taught the team joy and forgiveness. “Watch the film, it will make you live a happier life”

Ellen says she wants to order pizza. Who else wants some?

Bradley Cooper presents documentary. The quality is breathtaking. These people tell true stories of heroes stories for a living

Twenty Feet from Stardom (2013): Morgan Neville

Their 1st Oscar.

His mentor said to him years ago that he’ll never win an Oscar. The star coordonating “20 feet from stardom” in reality sings and everybody applauses standing.

Kevin Spacey “I sing because I’m returned from  Washington to be back with my Hollywood friends”. Angela Lansbury (88 years), Steve Martin (comedian), Pierro Tossi (5 yOscars for costumes) have won the awards for lifetime contribution. The honorary Oscar was presented at Washington.

The Jean Hearsolt Humanitarian awards as a global advocate for causes goes to Angleina Jolie who thanks her mother.

Exclusive videos at

It seems that until now at least, Dallas Buyers Club leads the race to the Oscars with 2 awards, having also very big chances for the best actor Oscar. Great masterpiece.

Viola Davis presents foreign language film:

The Great Beauty (2013): Paolo Sorrentino(Italy)

11th Oscar for Italy in film history in this category since it has been instituted.

Tyler Perry presents the 4th film nominated for Oscar Nebraska. Nothing is black or white, but radiant shades of gray. Then he presents Her. Gravity is between haunting silence and bold action.

Brad Pitt (nominated at the Oscar this year as a producer for 12 Years a Slave”) introduces U2 who sing the song from

Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (2013): Bono, Adam Clayton, The Edge, Larry Mullen Jr., Brian Burton(“Ordinary Love”). Everybody applauds standing.

Ellen DeGeneres tries to make a photo with as many actors as possible and sends it on Twitter.

Kristel Biell and Michael B Jordan present the Science and Technical Awards. 21 awards for 54 recepients. Gordon E. Sawyer award included.

Chris Hemsworth and Charlize Theron present sound Oscars. Best Achievement in Sound Mixing. Gravity (2013): Skip Lievsay, Niv Adiri, Christopher Benstead, Chris Munro thank to directo Alfonso for vision and patience

Best Achievement in Sound Editing Gravity (2013): Glenn Freemantle

1st Oscar, 2nd nomination after Slumdog Millionaire. Cuaron is brilliant and pushed him beyond limits. Sucha a great team, a big bond for this film. Thanks family and coworkers, generally.

Christoph Waltz presents Oscar for supporting actress. 3 of them are first time nominees. Lupita Nyong’o for 12 Years a Slave (2013). Everybody applauds standing.

So much joy in her life for so much suffery of the real character. She thanks the spirit of her character who has inspired her. She mentions the members of the main crew. The thanks The Yale School of Drama and each member of her family. No matters where you’re from, your dreams are valid.

Ellen serves pizza to some of the celebrities. She asks money from the public.

Ellen introduces Sheryl Bone Isaacs, the first coloured woman from the histoy of AMPAS (The Academy). They preserve the past, honour the present and shape the future. There have been 5 billion movie tickets sold in 2013. She presents the project of a museum which is planned to open 2017.

Amy Adams and Bill Murray present the Oscar for photography Gravity (2013): Emmanuel Lubezki

1st Oscar, 6th nomination, including previously with Cuaron for Children of Men. She names several people of  the crew and “my teachers, not all of them, but some”

In the music from her single “When I’m gone”, comes Anna Kendrick who presents Oscar for film editing: Gravity (2013): Alfonso Cuarón, Mark Sanger

1st Oscar for both of them. Mark Sanger thanks to professions. There is no greater accolade than to be recognized by thos who inspire you.

Whoopi Goldberg who presented 4 Oscar ceremonies and won 1 Oscar. She came with movie slippers, a tribute to The Wizard of Oz. LIza Minelli and Lorna Loft, decendants of Judy Garland are honored. Alicia Moore or Pink sings “Somewhere over the Rainbow” comemorating the film Wizard of Oz.

Looks like “Gravity” is gonna be the great winner of the night. The film received 5 Oscars already, for sound mixing, sound editing, film editing, cinematography and visual effects and has great chances for directing. It also did not lost yet at any of the 10 categories where it has been nominated.

Jennifer Garner and Benedict Cumberbatch present the Oscar for Best Achievement in Production Design The Great Gatsby (2013): Catherine Martin, Beverley Dunn

4th Oscar win for Catherine Martin out of 6 nominations. 1st Oscar for B. Dunn.

Rhys Ifans presents a collage of films stills about the heroes’ journeys. Features music from the trailer of Inception.

Julie Andrews presents in memoriam.

Bette Midler sings “the wind beneath my wings” from the film “Beaches”.

Ellen DeGeneres says they broke Twitter and her plan to get most retweets on her picture worked.

On the music from “As Good As It Gets”, Goldie Hawn presents the remaining 3 films nominated for best picture: Philomena, Captain Phillips  and 12 Years a Slave.

On the musical theme of Pulp Fiction, enters 2-time nominee John Travolta, who introduces another nomination in song category:Frozen (2013): Kristen Anderson-Lopez, Robert Lopez(“Let It Go”)

Everybody stands up applauding.

William Ross conducts the orchestra for the Oscars. He gets acknowledged.

Jamie Foxx and Jessica Biel present the award for Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score Gravity (2013): Steven Price

Cuaron inspired every note. “Sorry my parents for making so much noise while growing up”

best song Frozen (2013): Kristen Anderson-Lopez, Robert Lopez(“Let It Go”)

They have a very fun  moment thanking people whose names rhyme. This song is an inspiration to not let fear and humiliation stop you from being who you really are.

The big awards left: screenplays, leading actor & actress, directing and film.

Carey MUlligan, Leonardo DiCaprio and Amy Adams have each of them been in  two different films nominated for Oscar this year.

Robert DeNiro and Penelope Cruz present awards for screenplays

Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published 12 Years a Slave (2013): John Ridley

Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen Her (2013): Spike Jonze 4th nomination, 1st win. 42 seconds to thank. He thanks everyone who made a movie about relationships.

There have also been a lot of applauses when American Hustle script was on the screen.

Angelina Jolie and Sydney Poitier enter – the music of To Sir With Love. Poitier is celebrating his 50th anniversary for best actor. They present the Oscar for directing Alfonso Cuarón for Gravity (2013)

This has been a transformative experience, says Cuaron. If the great things would not take a lot, the whole thing would be the waste of time. For a lot of people, it has been a wising experience. He first thanks his son. This is the accomplishment of a lifetime project.

Under the music from Mary Poppins featured in Saving Mr Banks, Ellen DeGeneres promises to come back.

Ellen congratulates Matthew McConaughey on how he looks.

Daniel Day-Lewis presents the Oscar for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role Cate Blanchett for Blue Jasmine (2013)

Everybody applauds standing. She says “Sit down! You’re  too old to be standing”. She congratulates everyone who she has been nominated with. She thanks Woody and for the intelligent distribution who stayed for long time in cinemas. The female-centered movies deserve to stay in the the cinemas because they make money. She mentions a lot of particular people from the cast of Blue Jasmine.

Jennifer Lawrence presents Oscar for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role Matthew McConaughey for Dallas Buyers Club (2013) . He got most applauses. Everyone applauds standing.

Something to look up to, something to look forward to and somebody to chase, the hero. “When you’ve got God, you’ve got a friend and that is you”. His hero when he was 15 was himself in the future at 25. He turned that into a habit of competing with himself. Great speech. Memorable. When I’ll see it on YouTube, I’ll share it.

Will Smith presents the award for best picture 12 Years a Slave (2013)

Brad Pitt says everyone was brought together by S. McQueen, who says that without B. Pitt this movie wouldn’t have existed. Steve McQueen catches hardly his breath. Winners:
Brad Pitt
Dede Gardner
Jeremy Kleiner
Steve McQueen
Anthony Katagas

Everyone deserves not only to survive, but to live. This movie is dedicated to all those who have endured slavery and to 21 million people who still endure it on our planet.

Ceremony Directed by Hamish Hamilton.

Final Oscars count


1st place Gravity, 7 Oscars

2nd place 12 Years a Slave, 3 awards including best film

3rd place Dallas Buyers Club 3 Oscars

4th place The Great Gatsby, Frozen each 2 Oscars

Great movies who haven’t received any Oscars

American Hustle, 10 nominations,

The Wolf on Wall Street, 5 nominations

Nebraska, 6 nominations


PS Sorry for the spelling mistakes. Didn’t have time to correct all of them as I was typing.

Subjective comment: All in all, the ceremony wasn’t so spectacular compared to other years and most of the awards were predictable. Everybody was very hurried. I would have liked for the people awarded to have more time to send powerful messages and Ellen to have less time for her jokes.

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Leisure and Other Expenses for a Young Professional Living in Bucharest

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 07/02/2014

This is the last part of the articles I have started to write past month on how much does it cost for a young professional to live in Bucharest.

Here you can read the introduction and summary. Then, I wrote this article on how much are just the basic surviving expenses. The third article was about what are the expenses for administrative necessities.   Now, it is time to take  a look on the third category of expenses – leisure and other expenses.

So let’s get some more ideas about how much does it cost to live in Bucharest:


Books are pretty cheap in Romania, compared to other EU countries, but most of them are in Romanian. A regular price for a Romanian book is about 4-8 €. The books in foreign languages are usually 10-15 €. If you want to buy really cheap books, I recommend you to go the sellers from Universitate, they are opened in the working sunny days between 7 AM-5 PM.

Also, depending on your interest as a professional, there are lots of local and international magazines. Regularly, a niche review can cost between 1.1-6 €. Also, you might be interested in the different business annuals, which are usually published between October-February. Such an annual might have lists of business people, companies and industries, including telephones and e-mails which are hard to find in other places. One such annual might cost between 5-10 € and can be found at most newspaper kiosks, but especially in select stores such as the Relay or InMedio networks, which distribute the best periodicals.


In Romania, all movies are presented in their original language and with Romanian (or, occasionally, English) subtitles. The only dubbed features are some of the animated trash for really small children and they usually come also in subtitled version for adults.

Bucharest has about 70 cinema screens. The number of films in a regular week (Friday to Thursday) usually varies between 50 to 120.

Bucharest has become in the past years quite an important place on the map of small film festivals. There are at least a dozen of them each year, with very low prices for general entry. In Bucharest, there are frequently a lot of films (both commercial, and artistic) which appear in the same time or even before they get launched in the United States.

The price of a regular entry for an adult depends on:

– cinema;

– time of the day/week – there are discounts for morning, weekdays and some spacial day-based discounts on most cinemas;

– if you are a student and/or you have an ISIC/ITIC card, then you usually have between 30-50% discount;

The cheapest tickets are at some of the state cinemas (Gloria, Europa, Studio, Noul Cinematograf al Regizorului Român or NCRR – something like 1.1-1.7 €/entry) and even in some multiplexes (Lights Cinema, Cityplex – something like 2-2.5 €/entry) or private cinemas (Union, Elvira Popescu – 2.2 €/entry). These cinemas usually have a good art films offer. And of course, there are the very high-quality and premium theaters, appropriate for seeing blockbusters, the best of them (and most expensive) being the RomTelecom IMAX theatre, which is located in the Cinema City of the AFI Cotroceni Palace shopping centre near the Politehnica metro, and also two other private cinema screens also in Cinema City which can run 3D + 48 frames per second features. The prices for such an experience is usually between 6-15 €/entry.

There are also a lot of cultural centers (especially British Council and Centre Culturel Francais) which let you borrow books, magazines and films and often have accessible encounters or projections on cultural topics.


Bucharest is the most cultural city in Romania and an important EU cultural city. Usually, all theater plays are in Romanian. The cost of a ticket varies between 2-3 €/entry for a small theater and 5-15 €/entry for a big theater. In some cases, you can also buy a seasonal subscription, if you go often to the same theater. You can also get significant discounts as a student, which may vary depending on the spectacle and the theater.

Business networking events

Usually, there are a lot of business networking events quite accessible for all the English and Romanian speaking young people interested to participate, if you want to meet people, get clients or suppliers. For example, the meetings organized by Junior Chambers International, Business Network International, InterNations. I also recommend Speaker’s Arena for public speakers, Open Connect for entrepreneurs and Noble Manhatttan Coaching Support Group for personal development. Usually, there is a small fee for every single participation to such an event, or a monthly annual fee to be payed. If you go to 2-3 of these each month, the monthly cost would be something like 10-15 €.

Going out

Of course, you will need to allot some money for getting out with people, either on business or on personal reasons. Usually, in the regular bars/coffee houses/tea-houses/small restaurants a coffee/soda/small cake is 2-3 €. Most places have wireless access, but you need to ask for the password from the bar/service desk. There are also some cafeteria or small restaurants (especially near the student centers) where you can eat pretty cheap, healthy and consistent for a decent 3-4 €/meal, but those places aren’t appropriate for business meetings with (potential) customers, .

Some of the most popular meeting places in the center of Bucharest are the historical city center (with hundreds of small terraces and coffee shops), Mac Unirii (or any of the other MacDonald’s in the center), Cafepedia, SpringTime, KFC and the Librarium teahouse from Romană. All these are also appropriate for business meetings, but the quality of food is usually lower and the prices higher. There is also a Starbucks place in the shopping center Plaza Romania. I usually meet with people at Mac Unirii, Spring Time Universitate or KFC Romana.

Depending on how much, how often, who and where you meet in the city, you can expect to pay at least 10 €/m. Usually, I pay about 15-20 €/m.


Please read here my article on this topic. Generally, the monthly budget for gifts would be 5-10 €/m.

Other special expenses

If anything breaks in the apartment, if you get a fine, if you get seriously sick and generally anything you aren’t insured for, can cost you a lot and are not considered in the monthly budget. Also, if you buy a new phone, a new bike, a washing machine, fridge, furniture and anything like that, these are also not considered in the monthly budget. But at least one of these things is likely to be happening in Romania and you should consider a budget of minimum 100-150 €/year, which adds to 8-12 €/m.

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What Gifts to Buy to a Romanian

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 02/02/2014

Occasions to buy gifts

Romanians are very welcoming, occasionally (but not as a main trait) generous  and they buy lots of gifts to each other on different occasions. Usual such occasions are:

– birthdays

– name days – usually, most of the Romanians are named after saints, which means they have at least one “name day/ziua numelui” or even more, if they have more than one name, if their saint is celebrated more than once in a year or for a certain name they have more than one protector saint – though there is one main name date in each case, when, usually, a gift to be offered is practical and congratulations required . For example, my name is Ştefan (Steven) and I have three name days throughout the year: Saint martyr Steven (27th of December), St. Steven the Great (2nd of July) and the new Saint martyr Steven (28th of November). I receive congratulations and/or gifts on any of these three days. My sister is called Alexandra and she celebrates “name day” both on the Saints Alexander (30th of August, 29th of May, 10th of June) and on Saint Alexandra (21st of April). People called Ion/John and Ioana/Joanna celebrate their name days in all of the three holidays which honor St. John the Baptist. There are also a lot of other saints called “Saint John”, although their holidays aren’t frequently seen as actually “name dates”. People called Cristian or Cristina celebrate their name day on Christmas, Easter and on St. Cristina (24th of July). It is appropriate to congratulate and offer gifts on these occasions only to the Orthodox believers. If a Romanian is an atheist or from another religious confession, you need not congratulate them or offer them gifts on these occasions. The most important holidays of the year are marked with a red cross in the Orthodox calendar.

You can find out when is the name day of someone by looking up the name and its derivatives in the Christian-Orthodox calendar (available from a series of different websites and from most Orthodox churches).

– Christmas

– New Year

– Easter

– for women: Christian women’s day (the third Sunday from the Orthodox Easter), 1st of March, 8th of March.

– for couples: 14th of February (Valentine’s day), 24th of February (Dragobete). Please remember that “Valentine’s Day is not a Romanian or Orthodox holiday. Orthodox people celebrate the actual orthodox saint Valentin (different from the catholic one) on the 24th of October and that’s not related in any manner to couples. Also, some Romanian people frequently discard the meaning of “Valentine’s Day” as a commercial celebration and prefer to celebrate the lovers’ day on Dragobete, which is also not an Orthodox celebration (but a pagan one), but at least it has a centuries-old tradition.

– marriage – the gift for marriage must be consistent or in cash and usually if you are invited to the wedding.

What gifts to buy

Romanians aren’t pretentious. Usually, a symbolic, creative or unexpected small gift is enough. Sometimes, if you are artistic enough, you don’t even have to spend money on a present. I sometimes offered a poetry or a handmade pop-up personalized card as a most welcomed gift for a friend on any occasion. For some women, a cheery e-mail written from the heart and a beautiful flower will do the work.

Something traditional from your country/city which can be offered as a souvenir is also very appreciated. Romanians are crazy about foreign souvenirs, especially from places they’ve never been to.

But this is not always the case. A regular, nice gift, is a specialized book, or a book written by one of the favorite authors of the person you are giving the gift to. If you wrote a book yourself, it might also be an excellent gift (I gave a book I wrote as a gift to tens of people) if the person in interested in reading on the topic you’ve written on. A book in Romanian language usually costs 4-8 euros. A very special Romanian book (such as a dictionary, encyclopedia, a very specialized book or a treaty) is to be expected to cost between 15-50 euros.

Other gifts may depend on how well do you know the person to make an appropriate gift. It is recommended, if you are not really close, that you don’t buy something to wear, as it might be too personal. It is also inappropriate to give money in stead of a gift (as it says “I don’t know you well enough”), but it might be preferable if you don’t want to risk a bad present or don’t have time to look for something.

Don’t offer as a gift any kind of disks with music or film (unless they are really rare and appreciated), as the Romanians are used to downloading themselves whatever they need to from the internet.

Also, practical gifts are very appreciated, especially if they have some interesting feature or some personal/funny message. Something like a teacup, a plate, a tea pot or even a cooking pot can often be top-notch gifts.

It’s not recommended that you buy anything electronic as a gift, because Romanians are very picky and versed when choosing any piece of technology – which, in Romania, is pretty cheap. If you know someone is looking to buy something electronic, it’s better that you ask how much it costs and give him/her the money to buy it themselves if you want to choose that as a gift.

If the person is an Orthodox practicant (that is, goes to church every Sunday), a very appropriate and often bought gift is a religious book or a religious item (such as a little bottle of holy oil/mir, tămâie, icons). Although, do not buy them the Bible, as any Romanian usually has one in their homes. And if you do buy the Bible as a gift to a Romanian, don’t get cheap: buy the sinodal edition published in 2001 (the Romanian translation of Septuaginta). And don’t buy any religious book which isn’t published with benediction (almost all the Orthodox books have the mention in the first pages that they are published “cu binecuvântarea I.P.S. […]”).

Usually, it can be appropriate to spend on an individual gift for a Romanian up to 10-15 euros. Anything more is considered a special present, appropriate for a close friend or a very special occasion. If you buy an expensive gift for a Romanian, it might actually hurt your relationship with that person, as it might get wrongfully interpreted.

If – and only if – you are invited to a wedding, the regular sum of money to offer as a wedding gift is either the equivalent sum of the menu, or 100-150 euros, whichever is higher. For example, if the menu is 120 euros, than an appropriate wedding gift would be 120-150 euros. If the menu is 70 euros, than the lowest gift sum would be 100 euros.

Generally, these are some basic consideration which I can offer from my personal social experience in Romania.

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Administrative Necessities Expenses in Bucharest, Romania

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 28/01/2014

I started writing on how much does it cost to live in Bucharest. Then, I wrote this article on how much are just the basic surviving expenses. Now, it is time to take  a look on the second category of expenses – the administrative necessities of a young professional living in the metropolitan area of Bucharest.

So let’s get some more ideas about how much does it cost to live in Bucharest:

Urban transportation

The urban transportation in Bucharest is cheaper than in any other big city in Romania and than in any other EU capital.

Bicycle – the cheapest way, but it can also be dangerous. Officially, there are bicycle lanes. Practically, you will have to use the parts of the streets which are not occupied by parked cars, garbage bins and holes. By the way, nobody really respects street circulation rules in Bucharest. Nevertheless, it is the fastest and cheapest means of transportation in Bucharest and there are tens of thousands of people who do it everyday. A bicycle costs about 100-150 €. You will also need a very tough chain and locket (bicycles get stolen a lot) which might cost you an additional 10-15 €. Don’t leave your bicycle outside when you’re at home. Keep it in the apartment. Don’t leave your bicycle in the city during the night.

Surface transportation + metro/subway

An “abonament” for RATB (all surface transportation, meaning: trams, city buses and trolleys) is about 12 €/month. THIS ALSO INCLUDES NIGHT BUSES, WHICH WORK BETWEEN 10.30 PM-1 AM and 3-5 AM.

A metro card for monthly transportation in Bucharest is about 15  €/month. The metro runs throughout the whole Bucharest between 5.30 AM-11 PM and in some limited parts between 5-5.30 AM and 11-12 PM. (towards the ends of the tracks and in the center). The last metros go in all directions from Piata Unirii at exactly 11.30 PM.


Taxi services are also cheapest than in any other big city in Romania and any other EU capital. The usual cost is about 0.4-0.5 €/km. A regular trip costs between 3-6 €.

Whatever means of transportation you use, for any reason it is almost a certainty that you will use at least once or twice a month the taxi. So you’d like to spare at least 5-10 €/m for this.


A car in Bucharest might be necessary only in one or more of these conditions:

– your job depends on it;

– you do often trips outside Bucharest;

– you have a family or you drive more than yourself;

– you usually travel between 12-6 AM;

– you usually carry heavy things with it.

Otherwise, a car for your own personal transportation during the day in Bucharest is a very expensive, time-wasting and dangerous method of nerve-racking. Adding all the yearly expenses for a car, at least 100 €/m, supposing that the car is already completely payed for. If you don’t plan on staying in Romania much, but you need a car, best options are either to buy a second hand car and then sell it when you leave, or to buy a car in leasing for the period you live in Romania.

Mobile phone

Romania generally uses GSM SIM-based technology for mobile phones. About 99 % of the country is covered, although it may be useful for you to know that usually the signal gets lost in the metro.

You can either use prepaid cards or subscriptions/”abonamente” from any of the 4 big mobile telephony providers: Vodafone, Orange, Cosmote and RCS/RDS. Business people prefer Vodafone, which is usually a little bit more expensive. Young people often use Orange. Each of the networks provide you with almost-unlimited free calls in their network. It is recommended that you either have two mobile phones, or a dual SIM phone, usually Vodafone AND Orange.

The cost depends on how much will you talk on the phone, with how many people, and how well you adjust your subscription/prepaid options to the first two variables. The least is 10 €/m/phone. This is how much you actually get to pay at the end of the month, not what you get advertised.

It is best that you don’t buy a mobile phone or a smartphone in the subscription, as it will end up costing you at least twice the value of the phone in time and it might keep you dependent on that network. If you want a good phone for a few years, from my experience, it is best to invest something like 150-200 € for a very good, resistant mobile phone with no strings attached. I have my dual SIM phone since 2008, I payed 200 € for it in cash, on the spot, out of my own pocket and I have used it with a lot of networks, cards and options in Romania, Belgium, France and Italy. It still works fine and I intend to keep it.


Here are all the different things for the office, the house and your personal hygiene, such as:  light bulbs, candles, lighters, toilet paper, soap, shampoo, rasors & shaving cream, small bags, toothbrushes, tooth paste, mouthwashing, pipe-cleaner substances, mops, buckets, brooms, detergent for clothes and for dishes, toner for printer, paper, pens, markers, computer disks. Also, if you do not have access to a printer/copier/scanner, you will have to pay for these services in the city, which can be expensive in time and money. All this, about 30-40 €/month. of course, you don’t need to buy them all at once or in each month, but you do need them. If you want to get them cheap, I recommend Obor market & store.

Taxes, fees and commissions

Romania is a country where there are a lots of taxes to pay, even if you don’t earn any money. The mere existence of you breathing in Romania costs, indirectly: income taxes, local taxes, TV & radio taxes (even if you don’t have any), car taxes, apartment taxes. The bureaucracy is very high and can be compared with that from Russia or Belgium. You basically need to pay for every little thing, especially if you need documents from the local or central authorities. Although I am not sure, there might be even a tax for air and for rain. Of course, most of these are not monthly. And, if you are employed, there are a lot of taxes which are handled by your employer, so you might not even notice it.

To this, please add all the fees that you pay to the banks for all sorts of operations.

This can regularly add up to an average of at least 10-20 €/m., depending on what you are (officially) doing in Bucharest.

Please keep in mind to keep an eye on Analytic Vision to read further on the topic on how much does it cost to live in Bucharest.

Posted in Analytic & Critic Vision Over... | 3 Comments »

Basic Surviving Expenses in Bucharest, Romania

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 23/01/2014

Last week I started writing on how much does it cost to live in Bucharest. Now, it is time to take  a look on the first category of expenses – the ones for basic surviving.

So let’s get some ideas about how much does it cost to live in Bucharest:

Basic surviving


In Bucharest, the cost for accommodation is usually (significantly) lower than in any other big city of Romania and lower than in any other capital in the European Union.

Student dorms/”cămine”

Students in state universities may expect to pay something between 30-50 €/m for shared dorms. In a shared dorm, there usually are 2 to 5 people. There may be private dorms, and their price may be up to 100 €/m, but I haven’t seen or heard of such a thing. I lived for a few times, for a few months in students’ dorms in Grozăveşti and Regie. The conditions were awful. There are all sorts of bugs, your personal belongings are not safe – there is a lot of stealing even if the doors are “officially” locked and anyone can come in or out of the buildings (cămine), even if officially there is a doorman and/or an interphone.

The toilets are in common. Most often, the WCs are only holes in the ground, the doors aren’t lockable, and the water is either too hot or too cold. The colleagues are noisy and if you choose this option, sleeping pills and earplugs are a must. I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone. Some money may be made if you own a washing machine in the room. This is the way the students wash their clothes. The regular cost for 1 washing is 1 euro.

Even if you are not a student, you may also try to bribe someone into “selling” his or her dorm place, but this could also get you in some sort of trouble, not to mention the risk of being evicted anytime.

The appropriate moment for buying a dorm place is in the spring, when a lot of students disappointed by the “cămin” experience prefer to get a rent. KEEP IN MIND, IN STUDENT DORMS COOKING IS FORBIDDEN. So even if you pay less on the accommodation, you will pay more on the food.

Small studio/”garsonieră” (1 room)

Theoretically and most often, this is the first choice for someone who has a tight budget. Some even extend the concept of “student dorm” to a studio, which can be shared by two persons. The concept of “garsonieră” may vary depending on what you expect to find more than the actual living room: bathroom, small kitchen, balcony, storage closet. The monthly prices of the small studios vary depending on these 5 big factors:

– position in the city and vicinity to metro – (central or near metro 100-200 €/m – outskirts 50-70 €/m)

– dimensions: 6 mp (square meters) – 30 mp and, of course, the facilities and the furniture

– do you look for it through a real-estate agency or using specialized user-sites (read more about it here, in Romanian). The first option costs twice.

– when do you look for it – the highest prices are in the fall (especially September-October, when the students move in). The lowest prices are in spring.

– who are you going to share it with (do you pay for it alone or do you have someone to share it with?)


Usually, the cost of a 2-room apartment can be surprisingly close to that of a big studio. And the cost of a 3-room apartment might be surprisingly close to that of a 2-room apartment. Using the same criteria as above, the cost for the rent of an apartment (2 rooms or three rooms) is between 100-250 €/m. I lived for half a year in a 20 mp room in a 3- room semi-central apartment for 67 €/m. With some negotiation and networking skills, this is achievable by anyone.


Theoretically, there is the possibility of co-renting a house with a few people, but this is quite difficult, as there aren’t so many houses in Bucharest as there are in other EU countries where that might be usual (such as France, Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Luxembourg, Germany). renting a house in Bucharest most certainly has its privileges, but also sky-rocketing costs, especially if you expect it to be in a central area.

Maintenance and upkeeping (întreţinere).

Student dorms/”cămine”

The price is sometimes included in the rent. During the winter, it may be higher than during the summer with about 20-30 €/m.

Small studio/”garsonieră”

The prices vary, the bottom being in the summer: 10-25 €/m and the highlight in the winter: 50-90 €/m. Depends very much on the conditions of the building and the surface of the studio.

Apartment with 2/3 rooms

The prices vary, the bottom being in the summer: 20-30 €/m and the highlight in the winter: 100-150 €/m. Depends very much on the conditions of the building and the surface of the studio.


Depends on the heating source: wood, gas, central unit. In Bucharest, usually higher than the maintenance cost for an apartment.

If you choose to buy a place to stay in Romania, get a bank loan and personalize the apartment yourself, the monthly cost of paying the bank rate instead of rent is approximately DOUBLE. People who have bought apartments in the last 5 years in Bucharest will tell you that the cost of rate and the cost of rent is approximately the same, but that is NOT TRUE, since the rent prices have dropped to a third in the past years. The idea that it costs the same to own your own place and to rent it is a common delusion of Romanians not knowing on which planet they live on.


The cost of food in Bucharest is at least twice as much as in any other city of the country and comparable to that of the food in any EU capital except for maybe London and Paris. The good food is expensive. The junk food is also expensive. The cheap good food is scarce, requires time to look for from different sources and to cook it. Generally, the quality of food in Romania is low (especially the meat and the milk) – that doesn’t mean that it isn’t tasty, on the contrary. The healthiest food can be generally bought from the peasants in the markets – but not ANY food, not in ANY market and not from ANY peasant so mind you, be careful!

The minimum budget for food: 100 €/m. That means that you have no special preferences, you can eat anything, you aren’t on diet/regime and you are willing and able to buy this food from at least 5-6 different sources (some markets, specialized stores, hypermarkets) and to cook it at home. For this operation, it may be necessary to use a big backpack for weekly buying, which will facilitate your transportation of the groceries throughout the city.

The food can be expected to cost up to 200-250 €/m if you:

– frequently eat in the city

– eat junk food

– don’t have time, space or abilities to cook and you eat semi-prepared food

– don’t have time to shop from more places

– don’t do the shopping at the hours when the stores are regularly opened

– have a really small place in the fridge and can’t buy more food in each shopping visit.

The food actually costs less per month if you buy a bigger second-hand fridge for about 50-100 euros, because this way you won’t be obligated to shop very often and you will be able to store food for longer in the fridge, which is something important to consider if you cook and/if you are hunting for special offers and discounts in the hypermarkets.

If there is someone who cooks for you or who sends you food, this cost can be dropped to 50-60 €/m.

Other accommodation expenses

Internet in Bucharest comes very cheap and of very high quality. Depending on your needs (speed, number of users, surface, connection type) internet can cost up to 10-20 €/m.

TV cable. I see no good reason for any healthy young person to use TV in Bucharest. Almost all the televisions can be watched online in Romania. Still, if you have such an unhealthy habit, it may cost you 10-20 €/m.

Electricity. For regular domestic use, it is about 15-25 €/m.

Garbage. Tops, 5 €/m.


If you are hired with contract by an organization/institution, you aren’t obligated to pay anything, but you could find out that a private insurance may come in handy (even something like 50 €/year) .

If you have to pay monthly state health insurance, than the price may be at least 10-20 €/m.

Also, any analysis, investigations you may need to do for a diagnosis, especially complete blood analysis, are not wholly covered by any insurance and need to be payed partially from your pocket.

Also, anything related to dentistry is not covered but mildly by any insurance. Though, you will find the cost of teeth care and treatments in Romania significantly lower then in any other country of the EU except for maybe Croatia.

The cost of different alimentary natural supplements (such as minerals, vitamins and immune system), plus the medicine for rarely, mildly occurring sickness is about 20-30 €/m. If you don’t buy this in order to maintain your health, you will eventually get sick after 35 years, especially depending on the quality of the food. And that will cost you more.

The quality of your health depends on how much sport you take. A very useful method for saving money, time and health is using the bicycle for transportation.

Clothing and shoes

I have absolutely no idea about how much that costs in Bucharest, as I confess I usually got the largest part of my wardrobe as a gift, because I have a lot of relatives and friends. Occasionally, when I bought something in this apartment, I bought it from Obor or second-hand stores, which have pretty acceptable prices in my opinion, for acceptable items.

Please keep in mind to keep an eye on Analytic Vision to read further on the topic on how much does it cost to live in Bucharest.

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How Much Does It Cost to Live in Bucharest

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 18/01/2014

Depending on their scope and comfort expectations, the costs of living in Bucharest may vary a lot – so it really depends on who you ask. This article is for the young people between 18-35, without children.

There is, first of all, the (wrong) tendency to consider that the money you don’t spend you don’t need, and that may be interpreted in a lot of ways, but I consider it a general truth for living in Bucharest.

Then, you must consider that when making an average monthly budget for regular expenses (anywhere in the world), you also need to factor in some or all of these variations:

– the cost of living during the winter is higher than it is during the summer

– the rent you pay depends on the time of the year you rent the apartment. For example, rents in the fall are higher, because of the high demand

– there are some expenses which you make each year, but not each month. For example, buying gifts, paying taxes or going to a wedding. These must also be added in the monthly average

– the cost of transportation depends on how much will you need to make trips in the city

– do you receive in nature, or by the job or get a significant discount on some of the things you might have to pay for (place to stay, food, transportation)

– who with do you live with in Bucharest? Parents, relatives, sentimental partner, cat, apartment colleagues, house pet?

– will you have a social or cultural life in Bucharest?

– where in Bucharest is it acceptable for you to stay?

– will you have the availability to shop in different places for different things and at various hours during the day?

– will you cook, will you eat at home semi-prepared food or will you

– is your health insured? do you have any special sensitivities that you need taken care of? do you practice any sport?

– what is your budget for initially moving to Bucharest?

Please consider that this is just for living – basic things. You will need more, for sure, depending on what you’re planning to do. Based on these criteria, for some people 300 euros/month might be too much, for others, 500 euros/month might be too little. And you know what? They would all be right.

Now, I will first present the grossing figures in this article and I will follow up on it next week.

For reality reasons, I have excluded the option of living in a student dorm, as I generally consider that a hazardous or disperate option. Though, if you are living in a student dorm, this alone will decrease your general expenses with at least about 110-150 euros/month.

So, to sum it up, as an average considering also the yearly.

Basic surviving: totally 260670 €/m.

Accommodation/rent: 50-250 €/m.

Maintenance and upkeeping 50-70 €/m (as an average between summer and winter)

Food: 100-200 €/m.

Other accommodation expenses (internet, electricity, TV cable, garbage): 40-80 €/m.

Health: 40-50 €/m. (if you are basically healthy)

Clothing and shoes: 10-20 €/m. (if you need it)

Administrative necessities: totally 80-110 €/m.

Urban transportation: 30-35 €/m (100 €/m if you use a car)

Mobile phone: 20-25 €/m.

Consumables: 30-40 €/m.

taxes, fees and commissions: 10-20 €/m.

Other (leisure expenses): totally 50-80 €/m.

Reading: 5-10 €/m.

Film: 5-10 €/m.

Theater: 5-10 €/m.

Business networking events: 10-15 €/m.

Going out: 10-15 €/m.

Gifts: 5-10 €/m.

Other special expenses: 10 €/m.

So, as an answer to the title, the least amount for which you could reasonably live in Bucharest would be 400 euros a month. The maximum reasonable amount would be 860 euros a month.

How did I get to these figures?

Keep an eye on Analytic Vision to read further!

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Live Blogging for the the Golden Globes 2014

Posted by Ştefan Alexandrescu on 13/01/2014

I am watching the USA Golden Globes on live streaming from this address:

If that breaks from time to time, check this also:

Amy Poehler and Tina Fey host the show.

Jennifer Lawrence just won her Golden Globe as best supporting actress for her role in “American Hustle”. She said she discovered David O. Russell through “I Heart Huckabees”

Jacqueline Bisset won her first Golden Globe for “Dancing on the Edge”

Susan Ekins     Gregory Jacobs     Michael Polaire won the award for best TV film, Behind the Candelabra. I think this is just propaganda. I’ve seen the movie and it’s not so good really.

Elisabeth Moss – best supporting actress in a TV series, Top of the Lake. She is very emotioned.

Matt Damon presents the film “Captain Phillips” nominated for best drama.

Amy Poehler and Tina Fey introduce the president of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA). Theo Kingma. He says it was a  year full of very good movies.

Wolf on Wall Street is getting presented.

Aaron Eckhart and Yvonne Strahovski presents the award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Drama Bryan Cranston for “Breaking Bad” (2008). This is not the first time he is awarded for this TV series.

They also present the awards for the best TV series drama: Breaking Bad – Vince Gilligan TV show creator and producer. Vince was launched by his work at the X-files. He invites performer Aaron Paul to say something. Vince has thanked the audiences. In the beginning, there weren’t so many viewers.

In the commercial break, I’ve seen the trailer for Monuments Men, a potential future contendent next year. Initially the movie was planned to launch 2013, but the premiere was delayed.

Steve Coogan and Judi Dench the stars of Philomena present the drama nominee Philomena.

Kate Beckinsale present award for music Alex Ebert, All is Lost

and the best song: Bono, Adam Clayton, Larry Mullen jr – Ordinary Love from Mandela Long Walk to Freedom – Bono says he has been working for Nelson Mandela since the ’70s – a very personal award, – he pays a tribute to Nelson Mandela.

The best TV series or TV movie drama actor: Jon Voight for “Ray Donovan” (2013)

Her” is presented.

The award for best actress in a motion picture comedy is up next.

Robert Downey jr presents the award. Award goes to Amy Adams for American Hustle. She said this is her 15th year in acting. Thanks her daughter for teaching her to accept joy and renounce fear. Everybody congratulates her. Very enthusiastic hall.

Kyra Sedgwick and Kevin Bacon present their daughter Sophie Bacon – miss Golden Globe and Randy Bacon – mr. Golden Globe . They all present a comic moment together. They also present the best actress in TV series drama award:  Robin Wright for “House of Cards” (2013). “Completely unexpected, I have no speech” she says. She thanks David Fincher for inspiring her to accept this part.

Jim Carrey presents American Hustle.

Christoph Waltz presents the award for best supporting actor in motion picture: Jared Leto for Dallas Buyers Club (2013). He says it was a very transformative role. He has gone to great length to do this part. He hasn’t been in a film in 6 years before Dallas Buyers Club. He thanks everybody for supporting him with love.

Emma Thompson, 2-times winner of Golden Globes presents the award for best screenplay: Her (2013): Spike Jonze thanks David O. Russell, very good friend. Half of the people in the hall applause him. He is very emotioned and thanks everybody.

Laura Dern presents Nebraska. She starred in Alexander Payne’s “Citizen Ruth”

Julie Bowen and Seth Myers presents Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy Andy Samberg for “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (2013). He does a great performance – parody of “thanks speech”.

Best Foreign Language Film La Grande Belleza – Nicolo Giuliano (producer)

Jimmy Fallon and Melissa McCarthy present  the award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Mini-Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television Michael Douglas for Behind the Candelabra (2013) (TV). Steven Soderbergh asked him about playing Liberace even since he was filming “Traffic”. He acknowledges Matt Damon, one of the most talented actor he’s ever worked with and Steven Soderbergh. This is his third award at the Golden Globes, including the Cecil B DeMille award for entire career.

Emma Watson and Chris Pine present the award for animated film Frozen (2013): Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee

Colin Farrell presents Inside Llewyn Davis (2013)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy Amy Poehler for “Parks and Recreation” (2009) This is her first win for this role. She kisses Bono in joy. Everybody cheers her up. “I never won anything and I can’t believe I won”.

Tina Fey tells Amy Poehler: “I love you and there’s a very special place for you in hell”.

Emma Watson presents the work of Woody Allen. He changed the way we think. She starred in his latest film. Diane Keaton accepts the Cecil B. de Mille award for entire career on behalf of Woody Allen. 179 of the worlds’ most captivating actresses have played in Woody Allen’s films. They are the hallmark of Woody’s work – he has written all of them. He is a total author. “One of the nice things over writing – the thing will survive or not on its own merits.”. She delivers a wonderful speech for an old friend.

Ben Affleck presents Best Director – Motion Picture Alfonso Cuarón for Gravity (2013)

Chris Evans and Uma Thurman present Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy award “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (2013). Accepting the award: Dan Gore

The award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy is up next.

Jenneifer Lawrence presents it to Leonardo DiCaprio for The Wolf of Wall Street (2013). He says anyone who studies film must see the filmography of Bruce Dern. He thanks his mentor Martin Scorsese whose films influenced his entire generation. He stalked Martin Scorsese on making this film.

Reese Witherspoon presents the film 12 Years a Slave.

Niki Lauda and Chris Hemsworth present Rush.

Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy: American Hustle (2013)

Charles Roven accepts the award also on behalf of Megan Ellison, Jonathan Gordon, Richard Suckle . He shares the award with David O. Russell and thanks the first 5 actors of the film.

Leonardo DiCaprio continues his list of thanks and presents the award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama Cate Blanchett for Blue Jasmine (2013). Everybody in the hall stands up to applaud her. She thanks to Dianne Wiest. It’s impossible to do such a quality performance without really very good people, she says. This was the most fabulous, generous crew of Woody Allen in quite some time. She thanks a lot of people.

Jessica Chastain presents the award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama Matthew McConaughey for Dallas Buyers Club (2013) “Unexpected, but graciously accepted”. 86 times this movie was refused to be budgeted. This is an important triumph. He is glad this film came to him. He tanked his mother: “don’t go watching people on the screen, go do it yourself” and his wife who supported and inspired him. This movie was never about dying, but about living.

Before any award is given for best drama, I just want to say that among the films nominated in this category, I think the rightful winner should be Rush. But I don’t think it will win.

Johnny Depp presents the award for Best Motion Picture – Drama 12 Years a Slave (2013) Steve McQueen, director is accepting the award. The whole room applauds standing.

This edition of the Golden Globes TV show on NBC was directed by Louis J. Horwitz.

The nomination ballot it mailed to all eligible members of HFPA, who choose up to five nominees in each category. On the final ballot, the same members vote for one nominee in each category.. Information concerning the final results is known only to the accounting firm of Ernst & Young, LLP, prior to today’s opening of the sealed envelopes.

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