The 2011 Oscars: Where to watch




You've spent the last few weeks wasting your money on movie tickets, working on your Black Swan diet and following James Franco on Twitter — and now, the 2011 Academy Awards are less than two days away. E! has probably already begun its red carpet coverage.

If you're not planning your own Oscar viewing party at home, you can opt to watch the Super Bowl for Movie Nerds on the big screen at a few places around town. These viewing parties offer the chance to watch the show while eating, drinking, winning prizes and arguing with strangers about Natalie Portman's acting abilities. Besides, Anne Hathaway hosting means at least an hour's exposure to the actress, so you probably want to be as far away from your kitchen knives as possible during the telecast.

Here's some picks for Oscar viewing parties. Enjoy!:

The Theaters at Canal Place hosts the city's only Oscar Night America event, which means it's officially sanctioned by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences — and you get an official Academy Awards program with the price of admission. Besides getting to watch the show in the theater's plush leather chairs while enjoying food and drinks from Adolfo Garcia's Gusto Cafe, the viewing party benefits the Southeast Louisiana chapter of the American Red Cross. There will also be prize giveaways, a silent auction and a predict-the-winner contest. Festivities start at 6:30 p.m. and admission is $75. Click here for more details.

The New Orleans Film Society hosts its annual Oscar party at the Prytania Theater. Admission includes food (last year's party had jambalaya and red beans and rice), beer and wine, a small popcorn and soda. VIP balcony seating ($30 NOFS members, $35 everybody else) includes food from La Thai and Champagne in addition to all the other benefits of general admission. There's also a costume contest, movie trivia games and owner Rene Brunet being adorable. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $20 NOFS members, $25 general admission.

The weather is pretty much perfect right now, so watching the show on The Country Club's 12-foot poolside screen sounds lovely. The event features a predict-the-winners contest, with a free Country Club membership awarded to the most accurate guesser. The restaurant will have its full menu available along with $2.50 Champagne and mimosas. And if you're concerned about not having Oscar-appropriate attire — or any attire at all — you won't have to worry about that here. The party starts at 7 p.m. Free admission.

If you're rooting for The Fighter, the story of boxer Mickey "Irish" Ward, what better place to watch The Oscars than at New Orleans' Irish expat pub? Finn McCool's rolls out the red carpet (yes, there is actually going to be a red carpet) for its Oscar viewing party. The bar plays the ceremony on its big screen and is even planning to pull out the tablecloths for this special occasion. There will also be free food, a predict-the-winners game, and its own "Oscars" awarded to the best dressed man and woman and for the person who brings the most delicious hor d'oeuvres. The party starts at 6:30 p.m. Free admission.

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