A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association says that Oscar winners live about 4 years longer than nominees. Oh my God, what does that mean for the rest of us? Do non-nominees live 4 years less than nominees? I shudder to even think what this means for people not working in the entertainment industry. “Sorry, Captain. I have to inform you that you’ll be living l2 less years than the lady who designed the costumes for War Horse.” I can’t decide if I’m more disturbed by the results of this study or the fact that someone funded this study. “Hey, Researcher Rob, I’m bored of the regular Oscar pools at work. Instead, wanna try and figure out which of these Hollywood people are gonna die first? And then do a long-term Oscar pool based on that?”
The study claims that the elevated social standing that goes along with getting an Oscar is what may contribute to a longer life. Researchers say they figure that most Oscar winners live longer because they have an increased level of control over their work and therefore, they’re less stressed. This is really stressing me out. I’d love the 4 extra years! Although, it doesn’t sound like it’s really 4 extra years as much as stealing. So I’m assuming when your name is announced for winning an Oscar, you take the statue and 4 years away from one of your fellow nominees. I’m wondering if you get to pick which nominee you rob 4 years of life from. I’d gather you’d want to pick the healthiest, youngest and most talented of the lot. It’d be worth finding out if some of their talent transferred into those 4 years, too. How much Freaky Friday potential is there? “Wow! Thank you so much! It’s such an honor to be in a category along with such talented fellow cinematographers. I’d like to thank my family, my agents and hmmm… Let me think about this for 2 secs … okay, got it. I’d like to give a really special thanks to my fellow nominee, Emmanuel Lubezki, who shot The Tree of Life. It was such a beautiful film and I’m psyched to take 4 years of your gorgeous life from you. What an opportunity!”
Winning directors exceed the aforementioned 4 years and live 4.5 years longer than nominated directors. Talk about “it’s an honor just to be nominated”. Nope, it’s a health hazard just to be nominated. As a writer, I’m very concerned with this next stat. Oscar-winning screenwriters usually live 3.6 years fewer than screenwriters who were just nominated. Wait. What? So it works the opposite for writers? That’s not cool, Researcher Rob. I’d write an email to complain, but I’m afraid it will be so good that the complaint email will win me an Oscar, thereby making me die 3.6 years early.
Since the Oscars are next weekend, I’ll go ahead and make my Oscar predictions now. Best Actress will go to Meryl Streep and Viola Davis will die 4 years early. I can’t do this. It’s like winning an Oscar is a kind of life Botox that isn’t even available to most of us. As of now, I am neither an Oscar winner nor an Oscar nominee. This fact is setting me back a lot of years. In fact, I might even die before next Sunday night’s Oscars. That said, good luck next weekend, everyone! And if someone could set me up with that new Facebook option that allows this column to get posted immediately after I die on my Facebook page, that would be amazing. Because I feel it’s Oscar-worthy and then I can come back from the dead for a period of 4 years.
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