Did you hear about the brouhaha over a Hurt Locker producer dissing Avatar? Oh, it's quite a fracas, and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is taking it very seriously. Seems Nicolas Chartier sent an e-mail to friends and colleagues in the Academy on Feb. 19, basically pleading with them to vote for Hurt Locker for Best Picture. But he also made a reference to Avatar, violating Academy rules against "casting a negative or derogatory light on a competing film." Consequently, Chartier has been banned from attending the Oscars on Sunday. If Hurt Locker wins, the other three producers will take the stage to accept the award, while Chartier will have to pick up his trophy later, in shame.
Tough break, but that's what you get for running a negative campaign, right? That's what I thought, too, until I read the e-mail. Here it is, as posted by Pete Hammond at the L.A. Times. (The odd usage and grammatical errors were in the original and are explained by Chartier being French.)
I hope all is well with you. I just wanted to write you and say I hope you liked Hurt Locker and if you did and want us to win, please tell (name deleted) and your friends who vote for the Oscars, tell actors, directors, crew members, art directors, special effects people, if everyone tells one or two of their friends, we will win and not a $500M film, we need independent movies to win like the movies you and I do, so if you believe The Hurt Locker is the best movie of 2010, help us!
I'm sure you know plenty of people you've worked with who are academy members whethere a publicist, a writer, a sound engineer, please take 5 minutes and contact them. Please call one or two persons, everything will help!
Nicolas Chartier Voltage Pictures