EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW with Craig Robert Young about the 7th Annual Toscars

As award season gets into full swing, Brits in LA, with presenting partner Jaguar North America announced that the 7th Annual “Toscars” at The Egyptian Theatre, Hollywood, CA, will take place on the evening of Feb 26, 2014, benefiting the UKares Foundation charity.  The Toscars is a live event that parodies the biggest award show of the year. Ten teams of ten people have 3 weeks in which to make spoofs upon the nominated films for Best Feature at the Academy Awards. The Whacademy made up of a team of experts in their field, hand selected from the Entertainment industry, decide the winners in ten categories including Best Whactor and Whactress.

We at Just Celebrity caught up with Craig Robert Young, the founder of The Toscars. 

The Toscars

1. What are the Toscars about?

It’s an event, that starts on the same date the nominees for that other big ceremony announced, teams, chosen at random have three weeks to make a parody of the nominated films. We celebrate with a red-carpet event at the egyptian theatre with celeb judges who hand out the awards to our winners in categories such as best whactor, best choons, best bang for buck.)

2. What inspired you to make this award ceremony?

The movie be Kind rewind with Mos def and Jack Black, after me and my Partner in Brits in LA, Eileen Lee saw thew movie we thought it would be great to recreate the oscar movies with our friends and have a little fun.

3.How has the award ceremony expanded since it started 7 years ago?

On a crazy level – what started with a handful of friends, perhaps 25 of us in a bar that had football playing on the other screen – 2 of our dvd’s wouldn’t play, sound was terrible and our movies were all over 20 minutes long. Voting was decided by who made the loudest noise. Our red carpet was a red bath-mat. It has now become a very polished event with many rules and guidelines in place for the filmmakers. We now have 100 participants and the films can only be up to 5 minutes long. We have been housed in the egyptian theatre for the last 2 years. The awards are all custom made and we have real celebrities and over 600 people attend.

When it started….Our red carpet was a red bath-mat

Craig Young

4. You’ve had celebrity judges such as Bruce Vilanch and Eric Roberts in previous years, did you think when starting it out that the award ceremony would be as successful as it has been?

Not at all – It started to grow in year three when we decided to screen in an actual movie theatre and had our first proper step n repeat. Each year the movies have gotten bigger and better. It’s amazing what can be done on a $250 budget and the celeb involvement has been paramount – we have some great judges this year. Paul oakenfold will be judging best choons. (score) Jim Piddock will be judging best scribbler (writing) the actors are Owain Yeoman (The mentalist) Jennifer Elise Cox (Web Therapy) and a few more surprises to come. Alex Newell from Glee is hosting this year and what a talent he is. Boy and the nicest guy in showbiz.

5. Do you have an input in any of the films for the Toscars this year, yourself?

Eileen and I proof all the scripts and our committee view all the films. I feel a little like Tim Gunn from Project runway – if teams are having a hard time I’ll step in and give them a good pep talk. I actually was asked to make a cameo in one of the films this year. Which I did. I had a lot of fun They shot in my home, so I felt a little used and abused. But a good ploy from that team leader. -lol.

6. How do the actors for the parodies get chosen?

At random – 50 participants names are thrown into a tombola and picked at random to be a part of a group, then they are randomly assigned a team leader who will then again at random, choose a movie for that team to parody. Then the team leader can add on 4 other team members from the outside of selection to help complete his/her team of 10. Usually what they realize their team is missing, could be an actor or a DP, but usually it’s a sound person though – Seems to be the hardest to find.

It’s amazing what can be done on a $250 budget

7. What do you want to see from the films this year?

Creativity, movies that look close to the actual films, but I also am a fan of the over the top performances and clever twists.

8. If you were to describe the whole experience of the Toscars in 3 words, what would they be?

Life, Camera, Whaction!

9. Where do you see this event going in the future?

I’d like to make a 6 part BTS documentary next year and have the live show broadcast.

I’d like to make a 6 part BTS documentary next year and have the live show broadcast. 

Craig Young

To find out more go to www.thetoscars.com or twitter @thetoscars

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