Oscar Producer Explains Cut-Away from Brolin – Bardem Kiss: ‘No One Knew It Was Coming’


Academy Award telecast co-producer Bruce Cohen, who is gay, explains ABC's cut-away from the kiss and dance between Javier Bardem and Josh Brolin to AfterElton:

"It [the dance and the kiss] was unscripted, and the plan in the truck was always to cut to Penelope in the audience applauding Josh's and Javier’s introduction, so that is what happened, just as they were starting to dance. Josh and Javier’s moment (I saw them start to dance, but, to be honest, I have no idea if they kissed — that’s the first I’ve heard of that) would have made a great TV moment, but since no one knew it was coming, we cut to the gorgeous Mz. Cruz as planned. By the time we cut back from her close-up, James and Javier were walking to the podium."

I know Bruce, and he's a good guy, but I'm not sure I buy his explanation.

Did Oscar Producers Get 'Gay Panic' When Josh Brolin and Javier Bardem Kissed During the Telecast? [tr]


  1. Dastius Krazitauc says

    I hate cutaway shots in general. I want to see the people on stage who are being featured, not someone simply applauding in the audience. Big whoop. Don´t coast on some bland cookie-cutter template of live TV direction. Be ready for LIVE TV and cut to the audience only if there is something interesting happening.

  2. says

    Not buyin’ it. The show is called, live, as it unfolds. The Director sees what every camera sees, simultaneously, and calls the shots, tracking cameras as they change position while the one feeding the broadcast is live. A good director would have simply held the shot as the two men leaned-in toward one another…it was very clear they were at least “teasing’ a kiss before the cutaway…then cut to la Cruz after the kiss that was evidently coming. My own sense is that they cut away as they realized what was about to happen.

    From how many other Presenter entrances did they cut-away, mid-stride?

  3. says

    Isn’t the telecast also on a delay? The director would have seen the “kiss” before it was anywhere near hitting the live feed, chose to hold the shot or cut away. I agree with Kile, I believe he chose the latter.

  4. says

    I tend to believe it was a “gay panic” cut-a-way.
    If not it was a bad decision and the camera was focused on Penelope way too long. I sensed that immediately. The person deciding the camera shots definitely was holding holding back and not returning to Josh and Javier on purpose.

    For me, “The Kiss” between two of the blazing hottest men in Hollywood also happened to be the absolutely greatest presenters moment of the entire show. Too bad it was ruined. Again, whether you are gay or straight, it doesn’t get much better than Josh and Javier.

  5. Paul R says

    I’m kind of curious why they kissed. Were they trying to be shocking? Are they really good friends? I have lots of straight/bi friends who kiss me, but usually not on the lips unless they’re drunk. I guess I don’t really understand a whole lot of this story, but I do believe it’s BS to believe a director/producer didn’t know exactly what he was doing—saving the world having to see the HORROR of men kissing. Give me a break.

  6. The Iron Orchard says

    The shot stayed too long on Cruz. Anyone who has watched these shows over the years, or television in general knows that that was an extreamly long cuy away. I call bullshit!

  7. justme says

    He’s a good guy if liars are good guys. Don’t be blinded by star-f*cking. This isn’t even a good lie by any standard. Time to boycott Bruce Cohen’s crap.

  8. justme says

    And it’s (all too typically) bizarre that any commenter here would even try to dissect or complain about this kiss. They kissed. Why does that have to be dissected or complained about? People can’t kiss now? Or it’s bad that two men did? I mean, even as the usual trolling here goes — seriously?

  9. bobbyjoe says

    Hey, Bruce Cohen, if you’re gonna be cutting away from things for really long periods of time, next time, could you please cut away from any g*dd*mned children’s choir?

    This isn’t Grandma’s Sunday School Visit, it’s the f*ckin’ Oscars. Cut to some drunk celebrity or someone wearing something really ridiculous.

    Thanks, so much, in advance.

  10. Francis says

    Um……..no. Sorry Bruce. And if it were true, that’s still pretty damning in terms of your producing skills. They stayed off of Brolin/Bardem for like 6-8 seconds. Then magically, as they finished their moment, the camera turned back onto them? Please.

  11. Francis says

    OK, looking at the highlights again, I can sort of buy this, but in any case, that shows incompetence in production. They missed the “moment” that could have made the Oscars interesting.

  12. Hollywood, CA says

    BAHAHAHAHA! Are you kidding me? That was clearly a LAMBERT, and everybody knows it! You could have cut back from Penelope, but you didn’t. You probably were told that if anything gay happens, and it ends up on TV, you will be out of a job… so we get it. You were covering your ass. Just say that, but don’t straight up LIE and tell us what sounds like it could may have possibly happen.

    No other speaker’s entrance was cut, so why suddenly start then? Sucktard.

  13. Randy says

    Even if they had a plan, the show is live, and they must have made a decision not to show the kiss or much of the dancing.

    Normally if a celebrity on stage is doing something — anything — that’s the shot that gets broadcast.

  14. Andalusian Dog says

    Yeah, the explanation sounds fishy. And if they cut away to spare the children the agony of having to watch two obviously straight men kissing, then they are really stupid.

    The idea of two obviously straight men kissing is pretty stupid to begin with, though. Are we seriously still debating the shock value of two men kissing? Let me clarify with a final verdict: it really isn’t shocking. It’s only when there are teases and cut-aways that the “mystery” and “taboo” of such a benign act that it remains mysterious and taboo. Give me a break.

    So two dudes kissed. I’m bored. Is The News Hour on yet?

  15. says

    Though it is plausible, since in TV, many shots are scripted, they had numerous camera’s working, including one that would have been continuously on Brolin and Bardem. If it would have been a “great moment” an alert director would have immediately went back to the couple. This director would never make it in sports broadcasting.

  16. Kyle G. says

    This was purely homophobic and considering this homophobic decision by the OSCARS and how crappy the show has been…I’m done. Check please. Never watching again.

    Seen one Oscar, seen them all (especially when you know the producers don’t like the idea of same sex kissing/intimacy but show farr worse in relation to heterosexual relations on the show)

  17. luminum says

    A cut to Penelope Cruz for 3 seconds is what they’re talking about. The reality that it was a 9 second unexplained cut calls bullshit on that explanation.

  18. niles says

    He may be a “good guy”, but he’s a gross incompetent when it comes to putting on a decent telecast. This is just the icing on the cake.

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