Filmmaker Josh Seftel is not among the nominees for Best Director tonight. He won't even be in the audience at the Oscars. But he'll be there in spirit - and so will his Mom:
Like most filmmakers, one of my dreams is to go to the Oscars. But as it turns out, I'm not the only one in my family who feels this way. So would my mother, Pat.
Joshua: "What do you think you'd wear?"
Pat: "Oh, I'd buy something new. Oh, yes!"
Since my dad passed away, my Mom and I have been working together on a little web series we call "My Mom on Movies."
We look forward to our weekly chats -- me in New York, her in Florida. Sometimes my Mom struggles with the equipment. But when it comes to talking about Hollywood, she has no problem.
Joshua: "Who's gonna win Best Actor?"
Pat: "The one that I would like to see win is Bruce Dern. He was so believable that I wondered if he was a little bit like that in real life."
As much as she likes Bruce Dern, she has a soft spot for his competition.
Joshua: "Matthew McConaughey?" Pat: "I liked him for a long, long time."
Joshua: "Did you find Matthew McConaughey to be recognizable in that movie?"
Pat: "Not so much. Normally, he's really a nice-looking guy, and when the movie opened up, I just couldn't believe that was him."
But when it comes to leading men, our conversations often move into the realm of fantasy.
Joshua: "Do you think that you would go on a date with Matthew McConaughey when he was really skinny? Like in that movie?"
Pat: "Yeah, because he's still the same guy."
Sadly, another of my Mom's leading men got snubbed by the Academy this year.
Joshua: "Do you like Tom Hanks?"
Pat: "I love him. I think he's the greatest. He just seems like such a nice man."
So I was curious to see how she ranked Tom Hanks' movie "Captain Phillips."
Pat: "Oh, I didn't see the movie. One of the girls in the mahjong group told me that there's a lot of hand-held camera shots, and I'm kind of sensitive to motion sickness on ships."
Joshua: "What would you do if Tom Hanks invited you to a private screening of 'Captain Philips' with him?"
Pat: "I would go and meet him. And then I would close my eyes and listen to the movie."
Of course, the truth is, no matter who wins the Oscar this year, the big prize for me is getting to have these conversations with my Mom.
Joshua: "What's your ritual for watching the Oscars?"
Pat: "I'll get comfortable in my big chair, and I'll just watch it."
Tonight, my Mom and I will be thousands of miles apart, watching the festivities from afar. But I have a feeling she'll be dreaming of us together walking the red carpet.
Pat: "Maybe you'll get nominated someday? Yeah, then we could go."
Joshua: "That's a lot of pressure, you know."
Pat: "Well, I wouldn't put myself under pressure. I would just do the best job you can do. Maybe it'll happen. You never know!"
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