In Hannah Bigg’s upcoming class, And The Oscar Goes To…” students will have the opportunity to screen this year’s Academy-Award-nominated films as though they were actual members of the American Motion Picture of Arts and Sciences. Starting on Monday, May 1st, this class will apply the stringent parameters while screening Moonlight, Lion, Manchester by the Sea and more. Hannah had some very interesting things to say in describing her unique class.
WIH Reporter: What do we need to know about your upcoming class?
Biggs: We will not be able to cover every nominated picture during this 6-week course. Nine films were nominated for best picture at the 2017 Oscars, so we will have in-depth conversations on five to six of them. Don’t you fret though; we will touch on the themes and topics of the remaining three films throughout the term. Many of these nominated films deal with sensitive conversations and topics, so be ready for some heart-wrenching, difficult, but wonderfully enlightening conversations on many of these R-rated films.
I also love to bake, and I’m sure to surprise my students with ‘Oscar statue-shortbread men’ during one class session!
WIH Reporter: Are there any surprises coming in your class that you can tell us about?
Biggs: Not only will we screen the films in class and discuss the films in detail, but we will also study the history of the Academy Awards, including its scandals, triumphs, and multitude of hosting personalities.
WIH Reporter: Can you tell us more about the screening process you plan to implement in your class?
Biggs: Although all of these films are Oscar-nominated, this class would not do the films justice if we just sang the movies’ praises! We will critique the movies as if we too were judges for The Academy. Pros and cons. Praises and faults. Why were some films snubbed and others awarded? And finally, one of the most pressing questions facing The Academy today: are the judges out of touch with what consumers today look for in a movie?
WIH Reporter: What format do you plan to use in the class?
Biggs: My classes usually begin with an introductory lecture and announcements. We then screen selections of the film in class and pause at critical moments and intervals in the course of the movie to discuss certain aspects, historical references and facts, and pivotal junctures in the film.
WIH Reporter: What books are on your night table right now?
Biggs: I’m very lucky that my second-hand store find of a night stand has a whole bookshelf under its tabletop! It was a $15 steal! Of the ten or so books stacked haphazardly on it, the two I’m working through right now are Dan Barber’s The Third Plate: Field Notes on the Future of Food and The Unexpected Professor: An Oxford Life in Books by John Carey.
WIH Reporter: Is there anything else we should know about your Oscar’s class?
Biggs: I hope to offer this course every summer term with each new summer session discussing the new year’s Best Picture nominees! That’s a lot of OscarMen, shortbread cookies!
Hannah Biggs’ class begins on May 1st at 10:00 a.m. For more information, or to register, click here.