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OSCARS

Screenplay to 'Locker's' Mark Boal; art direction for 'Avatar'; costumes for 'Young Victoria'; editing for 'Hurt Locker'

March 08, 2010

Original screenplay

"The Hurt Locker"

Mark Boal

A war reporter turned screenwriter, Mark Boal spent time embedded with American bomb disposal experts in Iraq. From his experience was born his original screenplay for "The Hurt Locker."

Boal dedicated his award to U.S. troops currently in Iraq and Afghanistan. He also thanked directed Kathryn Bigelow and his father, who died a month ago.

Boal's win comes just days after he and other people associated with the film were named in a lawsuit brought by Master Sgt. Jeffrey S. Sarver, one of the subjects of Boal's reporting. Sarver has claimed that the character played by Jeremy Renner is based on him.

"As I've said before," the screenwriter told reporters backstage Sunday night, "Jeff is a brave soldier, and the screenplay is a work of fiction, and it's not based on any one person's story, and that's really all I have on it."

Art direction

"Avatar"

Rick Carter and Robert Stromberg (art direction); Kim Sinclair (set decoration)

Pandora, the unspoiled alien world at the heart of "Avatar," provided moviegoers with some of the year's biggest wow moments. The movie's mix of digital and traditional sets -- all of which were rendered in 3-D -- was regarded by many as a technological triumph.

Rick Carter, who was previously nominated in this category for "Forrest Gump" in 1995, saved his most heartfelt thanks for the film's director, James Cameron.

Robert Stromberg, who was nominated in 2004 for visual effects on "Master and Commander," devoted most of his speech to recounting his personal health struggles, which he didn't specify. "Thirteen years ago, doctors told me I wasn't going to survive," he said. "And here we are." He declined to say what his illness was.

Costume design

"The Young Victoria"

Sandy Powell

Upon accepting her third Oscar in this category, Sandy Powell deadpanned, "I already have two of these, so I feel greedy."

The British costume designer created the couture for the court of Queen Victoria circa 1837. For inspiration, Powell consulted Kensington Palace archives, where she studied clothing worn by the monarch during her youth. She subsequently created her own designs for the historical romance.

Film editing

"The Hurt Locker"

Bob Murawski

and Chris Innis

The prize for best editing went to the husband-and-wife team of Bob Murawski and Chris Innis. "Thank you to the academy for giving this award to a movie that was made without compromise," Murawski said. "We didn't have any preview screenings or focus groups or studio notes. Everybody made the movie we wanted to make."

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