EXCLUSIVE: This year’s producers Brian Grazer and Don Mischer are expanding on a good idea from last year — “Mominees” — to make Hollywood’s biggest night more relatable. Once again, during the pre-show for the 84th Academy Awards, mothers of nominees will discuss insights into their kids. Featured will be George Clooney’s mom, Melissa McCarthy’s mom, Gary Oldman’s mom, plus others. “Great fun,” an insider tells me. (Especially if they say anything that embarrasses their kids…) Last year, the Oscars also featured the nominee’s mothers who took to Twitter in the lead up to the Oscars and during the show. That’s when the term ‘Mominees” was first coined, and moms of James Franco, Jeremy Renner, Mark Wahlberg, Mark Ruffalo and others were enlisted. Those moms, too, were interviewed on TV for the Oscar pre-show.
For years Hollywood’s marquee names have been escoorting their moms to the Academy Awards. Winners’ speeches almost always thank their parents right alongside their agents, managers, and lawyers. In 2011, the opening monologue featured both Anne Hathaway’s mother and James Franco’s grandmother in cameos from their seats. (Hathaway’s mom critiqued her daughter’s posture, while Franco’s grandma expressed glee at the sight of “Marky Mark”.) Abbd last year’s Best Director winner Tom hooper said in his acceptance speech: “Listen to your mother.” Looks like Grazer and Mischer took that advice to heart this year.