The story of 1 Oscar: No. 3453 Bollywood bound
Once he was simply known as Oscar No. 3453 but now the little gold man has a new name, 'Best Original Score,' and he's Bollywood bound.
AR Rahman, India's revered film composer, collected Oscar No. 3453 on Sunday night and will be taking him home to India.
And just to make sure No. 3453 won't be a lonely expatriate, Rahman won a second Oscar, for best song. Both were for the movie Slumdog Millionaire.
'I want to thank the Academy for being so kind,' said the composer known in his native country as the Mozart of the Madras.
In a way, the trip to India is only fitting for an Oscar that from the beginning just seemed destined for life on the road.
Unlike its 51 counterparts at Sunday's show, Oscar No. 3453 missed its flight a week and a half ago from Chicago to Los Angeles. It was photographed with the others at the R.S. Owens factory where they were cast, but then was somehow misplaced.
Quickly located, it was packed up and sent solo to Los Angeles.
It arrived at the Kodak Theatre no worse for wear. Once there, Steve Meisner, Hollywood's Keeper of Oscars, buffed it to a fine shine and placed it on a table with its brethren.
From there it was handed off to Rahman who will ensure that it becomes one of the world's most traveled Oscars.
And then this:
Dev Patel helps co-star Rubina Ali, 9, work her way around unfamiliar food, as Azharuddin Mohammed Ismail, 10, (far right) figures out the cutlery.
Everytime I saw them, either on stage or in their seats or on the red carpet, the team of Slumdog Millionaire was all in it, together. Scores of photos that show Danny Boyle and his team especially Dev Patel, hugging, hoisting and clutching the children from Mumbai's slums who are perhaps the real heroes of the film. Among all that Oscar finery and stiff bow-ties, there's the unmistakable feel of watching a bunch of people whose heart is in the right place.