LESLIE CRISS: Oscar folks offend, forget to remember Opie’s pa

By Leslie Criss

“All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.”
– William Shakespeare

“Ain’t we pickin’ our peaches ‘fore they’re fuzzed up good?”
– Andy Griffith as Sheriff Andy Taylor

“But the thing about remembering is that you don’t forget.”
– Tim O’Brien

The presentation of the Oscars is over and I’ve yet to see the movies nominated, much less the winner.
At nearly $8 a reel – almost $20 if snackage is included – a day or night at the picture show can put a dent in most folks’ budgets.
I love going to see good films – sometimes even mediocre ones – but I just didn’t find time to see those in contention for an Academy Award this season.
Still and yet, last Sunday night I watched the Red Carpet arrivals and the long, long, long Oscars telecast with many millions more viewers.
Why? Habit, I guess.
I remember years past, when I was in college and even later, when I could boast having seen every film nominated. So at least I felt I had an interest in the outcome.
Not so, anymore.
But I chuckled at some of Seth McFarlane’s jokes and a few of the failed fashions.
And I applauded the vast diversity – at least in age – of the actors nominated this year.
A lot of people who watched have given McFarlane scathing reviews, calling his banter “inappropriate” and “sexist.”
I’ll admit the production might not have been suited for young children, but if they watched at home it was not the fault of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
If something I’m watching disturbs or offends me, I change the channel or turn off the TV. It’s easy.
There was something, however, extremely inappropriate that was the fault, ultimately, of the Academy.
Whoever put together the list of industry people who died this past year for the In Memorium part of the show, should be expelled forever from Hollywood.
Well, perhaps that’s a bit much. At the very least, their pay should be docked.
Among those left off the list – Larry Hagman, who was a movie actor long before making J.R. Ewing a household name.
But the granddaddy of all overlooks was Andy Griffith.
Yes, Sheriff Andy Taylor.
He was a television actor, indeed.
He also won critical praise for his role in the film “A Face in the Crowd” in 1957. And “No Time for Sergeants” a year or so later. That’s where his path crossed with that of Don “Barney Fife” Knotts.
Griffith died July 3, 2012, and he ought to have been remembered by others in his profession.
Shame on you, Academy.

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