But this year, The Times also sent Julia Wick, a reporter from the paper’s Metro section who writes the Essential California newsletter.
She emerged from the subway, passed the lines of valets and headed to the rain-soaked red carpet before claiming her nose-bleed seat.
Over the next few hours, she experienced a different side of the Oscars — the swag-filled restrooms, the surprisingly meager bar tipping, the aggressive food runs, the stealth vacuuming and the way even Hollywood’s biggest night can’t quite compete with Nextdoor.
And of course the excitement of the Academy Awards making history.
Here is Julia’s journey as she told it on Twitter:
Johnny Morales, 29, is a good of example of how much Oscars culture permeates the city, even if (like him) you haven’t seen any of the movies. Sounding like a film pundit, he says 1917 will prob win big, but OUATIH has good shot bc it’s about Hollywood & Hollywood ppl love that. pic.twitter.com/MV94umbXvC— Julia Wick (@sherlyholmes) February 9, 2020
Carlos Gomez and his wife Sandra Perez say biz is slow today bc the street is closed. They both loved The Joker. “That’s the one that’s going to win a lot of awards today, I hope so,” Carlos says. They’re also hoping to catch a glimpse of Joaquin Phoenix. pic.twitter.com/2kJ7WAyRLp— Julia Wick (@sherlyholmes) February 9, 2020
Juan, 21, found out he would be working valet for the #Oscars 3 days ago from “my boss’s boss’s boss.” It’s his first time working the show and he’s thrilled to be here. He moved from St Louis for school (he’s studying computer science) & is hoping to see Tom Hanks. pic.twitter.com/79FqS0UVTs— Julia Wick (@sherlyholmes) February 9, 2020
“Oh my goodness, it’s sopping!” says a woman as she lifts up her magenta strapless gown heading into the show. Security guard is warning everyone about the wet carpet and you can hear the squish-squish of shoes on it over the chatter pic.twitter.com/XcnNmaMmNH— Julia Wick (@sherlyholmes) February 9, 2020
Margot Robbie rapid-fire typing into her group text (looks like there is maybe a fire emoji in the group name but couldn’t quite see) while walking in the lobby, stops to hug Rooney Mara— Julia Wick (@sherlyholmes) February 10, 2020
“It’s vomit. Mom’s. Spaghetti. On your sweater,” says a man parsing Eminem lyrics with a Talmudic intensity, while an otherworldly beautiful woman vapes next to him looking bored.— Julia Wick (@sherlyholmes) February 10, 2020
Woman on the loudspeaker asks that we “respectfully refrain” from applause during the in memoriam segment, which must be next.— Julia Wick (@sherlyholmes) February 10, 2020