2023 Academy Awards

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It has been an eventful week: it began remarkably well with my Quantum Keynote in Miami, where I also enjoyed some high quality down time on the beach reading Vanity Fair’s Hollywood Issue, with several emails from (CEOs of Hedge Fund Managers) following my presentation, a couple of them here:

Hi Sridhar,

Great presentation at the conference, everyone enjoyed it a lot.

Dr. Tayur,

Thank you for the presentation at the Schonfeld offsite this week. I enjoyed it and would like to share it with my team, may I trouble you for a copy of it?  It would also be great to have a quick follow up call with the team after we’ve discussed it if you are available.

In 2020, I gave a Keynote at AOPO (see Comfort Videos), that resulted in several OPOs requesting my Nudge Video, and then implementing them to increase the supply or organs and tissues for transplantation. Will this Keynote, likewise, result in several Hedge Fund Portfolio Managers to implement my Quantum-inspired algorithms in their operations?😊

So a wonderful start to the week.

And then, Thursday, as I was about to wire money to SVB (per a Capital Call from Neotribe Ventures where I am a LP), I decided not to and instead texted:

Hi Kittu: Still wire to SVB? Or wait..

Indeed, waiting was the right decision. By Friday morning, several emails from VCs  poured in:

Earlier today, Silicon Valley Bank, a leading commercial bank and lender to the venture capital industry, was closed by a California regulatory body and the FDIC has stepped in as receiver.

We have halted our capital calls until new bank accounts are opened, and the situation will likely delay any distributions.

We will be in contact as soon as we have an update to provide. Please let us know if you need anything in the meantime.

Some portfolio companies (like Vendia, see Serverless Blockchain) thankfully appear to have been far less affected as they were not banking solely with SVB.

I was originally planning to skip watching Oscars this year – sacrilegious! See 2021 and 2022 posts – largely because I really didn’t care too much for many of the movies on the ballot, but then with Naatu Naatuan upset win at the Golden Globes over Rihanna, Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift, and shot in Ukraine – being featured on stage, I felt compelled to change my mind.

Naatu Naatu” (transl. Native – transl. Local) is an Indian Telugu-language song for the soundtrack album of the 2022 Indian film RRR. The hook step involving N. T. Rama Rao Jr. and Ram Charan dancing together became popular. “Naatu Naatu” became the first song from an Indian film to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Song.

My pick for the Oscar for Original Song is Rihanna. But, if Naatu Naatu wins, I will not be unhappy.

I would like to see the following to win in their respective categories, but I am sure I will be disappointed with many losses, especially as I have picked a few that are considered “low likelihood”.

Top Gun: Maverick. Daniel Kwan & Daniel Scheinert. Austin Butler. Michelle Yeoh. Brian Tyree Henry. Angela Bassett. Everyone Everywhere All at Once. All Quiet on the Western Front. Argentina, 1985.

You know from Top Fun that I really liked Top Gun: Maverick. I did enjoy Everyone Everywhere All at Once but felt that the basic creativity was too repetitively used and after a while it just seemed pointless, and it is my pick for Original Screenplay.  Austin Butler as Elvis was very good. Of course, I really liked Michelle Yeoh in Tomorrow Never Dies. Talking about Bond women, Eva Green (“I am the Money” from Casino Royale) is pretty good in (now streaming on Apple TV; first three episodes available) Liaison. I think Causeway, as a movie, was a bit forced – and I do like to see Jennifer Lawrence in Indie roles, especially as I first saw her in 2010 in Winter’s Bone, in West Newton Cinema) – but Brian Tyree Henry gave a fine performance. All Quiet on the Western Front was one of my favorite books as a teenager, and so I am rooting for it to win for Adapted Screenplay. I like movies from Argentina (recall: Secret in their Eyes, the 2009 original film that won the Academy Award, not the disappointing 2015 remake), and so that is my pick for International Film, although if All Quiet on the Western Front wins I will be quite happy as well.

The Red Carpet pre-show (evidently the carpet without being red 😏) will begin soon. Let me get ready by heating some samosas and opening some red wine. Enjoy the show.

PS. Yesterday, I received an email saying that Lucid will be advertising during the Oscars. As you are aware, now that supply chain and production problems are not the only bottleneck, CEO Peter Rawlinson is focusing on Sales & Marketing. See Risky Business.):

Lucid Group Inc (LCID.O) on Wednesday forecast 2023 production well short of analysts’ expectations and reported a major drop in orders during the fourth quarter amid weakening demand, sending the electric carmaker’s shares down 11% after hours.

The Newark, California-based company, which was already battling supply chain and logistics issues and struggling to deliver cars, was hit by aggressive price cuts sparked by Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) that lured consumers away from its luxury cars amid rising interest rates and soaring inflation.

 

2 comments

  1. Elephant Whisperers wins Oscar for Best Documentary Short Film. Kartiki Gonsalves grew up at IIT Madras.

    1. Great to know! Loved the acceptance speech of RRR!

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