By Tim Masters
Entertainment correspondent in Los Angeles
Oscars host Neil Patrick Harris is promising ‘a hint of magic’
The campaigning is over. The red carpet is rolled out. And Hollywood is braced for its starriest night of the year.
The final countdown to the Oscars is under way with Birdman and Boyhood vying to win best picture at Sunday’s ceremony.
Richard Linklater’s drama Boyhood has been tipped to win for months.
But a flock of recent awards victories for Birdman has seen Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s showbiz satire swoop in as a late contender.
The 87th Academy Awards, this year hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, take place at Hollywood’s 3,300-seat Dolby Theatre.
Harris has promised “a hint of magic” while performers at this year’s ceremony include Lady Gaga, Rita Ora, Jennifer Hudson and Anna Kendrick.
Security is tighter than ever this year around the Oscars’ venue, the Dolby Theatre
Outside the venue, a section of Hollywood Boulevard is sealed off ready for the annual influx of A-listers as well as lesser-known nominees from the other side of the camera.
Security around the event is said to be the most sophisticated yet, with 1,000 police officers on duty and operations being run from an underground bunker.
On Thursday afternoon the streets near the Oscar venue were in lockdown after a suspected bomb threat which proved to be false.
The final round of voting by the Academy’s 6,292 members ended on Tuesday.
Many of the nominees have been attending a flurry of pre-Oscar events and screenings in and around Los Angeles.
There are eight contenders for best picture:
Source:: BBC Entertainment