PR PLAY OF THE WEEK: Oscar speeches keep the media talking

Last week's Academy Awards ceremony didn't win any ratings wars, but not for lack of spectacle.

Last week's Academy Awards ceremony didn't win any ratings wars, but not for lack of spectacle.

It wasn't surprising that many politically minded stars used the evening to voice opinions on the war with Iraq. But two celebrities share PR Play of the Week honors for comments that transcended the evening and lived on to be covered extensively by the media in the following days. Michael Moore, of course, used his Best Documentary win to critique the President. "We live in the time when we have fictitious election results that elect a fictitious president," he said. "Where we have a man sending us to war for fictitious reasons, whether it is the fiction of duct tape or the fiction of orange alerts. We are against this war, Mr. Bush. Shame on you." Moore was cut off when show producer Gil Cates turned up the music, but not before the audience weighed in. To TV viewers, it may have seemed that Moore's tirade sparked anger, but those in attendance said that it was actually only a small group of stagehands (a conservative group by Hollywood standards) standing near the microphones that booed. Either way, the comments sparked a flurry of headlines (Michael Moore - patriot or scoundrel?) that Moore himself was sure to love. Less controversial, but equally covered, was Adrien Brody's Best Actor acceptance speech for The Pianist. He began by grabbing presenter Halle Berry and forcing a kiss on her, perhaps proving he is a true Polanski protege. He continued with a message of tolerance. "Whether you believe in Allah or God, may he watch over you, and pray for a peaceful and swift resolution to this war," said Brody, with a lock of hair falling artistically across one eye. Neither Brody nor Moore is likely to be mistaken for statesmen, but both established their acumen as showmen. In a night of fashion, they proved that style is more than what you wear.

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