The other day, I was thinking about how excited I get with three major awards/announcements every January: the winners and honor books for the Caldecott and Newbery awards, announced every year at the ALA Midwinter Conference, as well as the annual too-early-on-a-Tuesday-morning announcements of Oscar nominations (see my Reel Librarians blog for my personal reactions to this year’s Oscar glories).
And this year is extra special, because Hugo, the film adaptation of one of my favorite books, Brian Selznick’s The Invention of Hugo Cabret, received the most Oscar nominations. It earned 11 nods, including nominations for Best Picture, Best Director (Martin Scorsese), and Best Adapted Screenplay (John Logan).
Just four years ago, in 2008, The Invention of Hugo Cabret won the Caldecott award. And that year, I was lucky enough to attend my first ALA Annual Conference, as well as my first Caldecott & Newbery Medal Awards dinner. It was a magical night, and Brian Selznick’s animated short film and inspired acceptance speech — not to mention his dazzling rhinestone-encrusted shirt! — stole my heart as much as his fabulous book and illustrations had done. He also designed that year’s program booklet, seen below.
And it is fitting, of course, to come full circle, for Brian Selznick is a first cousin, twice removed, of David O. Selznick, legendary Hollywood producer and winner of Best Picture Oscars for Gone with the Wind, 1939, and Rebecca, 1940.
I love it when separate loves come together, such as my enduring love for children’s and youth literature, and my love for all things cinema. Congrats, again, to Hugo!