If they are anything like most Oscar winners, the team behind The Artist will have spent the first day of the rest of their lives conforming to the grandest, and most lucrative, of Hollywood traditions.
Having woken up, pinched themselves, and made sure that -oui! – it really was a gold statuette on their bedside table, France’s newly minted movie stars are likely to have devoted their waking hours to pondering two pressing questions: how to shift that throbbing hangover, and which of the myriad career choices suddenly on their horizon should they pursue next?
Breaking the silence
The first will not have been easily answered. Having sought refreshment at the Governor’s Ball, the team who won five of Sunday’s Academy Awards – including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor – adjourned to a packed party hosted by their film’s distributor, Harvey Weinstein, at the Mondrian Hotel in Hollywood.
Then they swept through Vanity Fair’s bash, before continuing to the Chateau Marmont hotel, where at around four in the morning, several boisterous members of their entourage leapt into the swimming pool, fully clothed.
The second post-Oscar question requires even more careful consideration. Like any winners of the biggest accolade in show business, The Artist’s leading man Jean Dujardin, director Michel Hazanavicius, and producer Thomas Langmann will, for the time being, be inundated with potential job offers. But, as any Hollywood agent will tell you, an overabundance of choice doesn’t always make for easy decisions.
Leverage the success
On a purely pragmatic level, history suggests that all three can, if they so desire, leverage The Artist’s success into financial security. The film has already made $76 million worldwide and is now being widened into more than 2,000 cinemas in the US, with a view to further capitalise on its Best Picture status.
As well as “back end” earnings from that pot – which must also be dipped into by the voracious Weinstein – they are entitled to use their modish status to secure significant paydays.