Big studios go all out in swag-fueled Oscar push
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Giant coffee table books, iPod Shuffles, signed letters from directors, even Lincoln turkey roasting pans. That's just some of the largesse doled out by the studios to voters for awards presented earlier this season - each with the potential to influence the outcome of Hollywood's most important awards, Sunday night's Oscars.
Such gifts are strictly forbidden by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
But for studios, the stakes are high, and they've been creative in working around the rules to give their movies the best spotlight possible. A best picture win can boost a film's commercial appeal and solidify relations with big-name actors and directors.
This year, top Oscar contenders Argo from Warner Bros and Lincoln from Disney pitted two deep-pocketed rivals against each other in what some say was an unprecedented level of Oscar campaigning. There was even some targeted sniping about the films' bending of historical facts.