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Here’s How You Try to Spin the Academy Awards

"You can say we failed. I'd say we still got 38 million people ... In the past when you have a comic, that comic can play off what happens on the show. I think that was missing. I think [Franco and Hathaway] were doing their job. Franco is a very charming guy, but sometimes you need a comic to make fun of things ... Give them an A for guts to get up in front of everyone. People don't want to do it. They don't want to take the chance of hurting themselves. In today's world especially, it is vicious ... Go back and look at what these same critics have written: 'The Academy is afraid to take chances' and 'if the Academy doesn't get younger, they'll be off the air.' So when the producers came and said, 'We've got an idea,' we said, 'Great.' We tried something." —Academy president Tom Sherak on the not-very-successful Oscars. [HR]