"Zero Dark Thirty" or "Lincoln"? Jennifer Lawrence or Emmanuelle Riva? This coming Sunday, viewers will hunker down, predictions in mind, to watch the 85th annual Academy Awards. But what's a major television event without a few tech tools to get you through?
We've selected a handful of Oscar apps you will find useful as you settle down for an evening of glamour and triumph. Some of these apps are all-encompassing, intended to provide a one-stop spot for coverage on the event and some are more specific to movie lovers and will challenge the knowledge of the most educated film buff. We promise you this: all of them will prepare you for the biggest night in Hollywood.
The Oscars (Official App)
The Oscar app, created by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and ABC Digital, aims to be the go-to app for users, bringing you everything from streaming video on the red carpet down to tasty recipes to cook up Sunday night. Users can view a list of the nominees, watch videos and see photos, as well as catch a glimpse of the nominees hob-knobbing backstage and on the red carpet.
The app supports more than a dozen video streams so you can follow along; select "Watch" mode to view ABC's correspondents and keep you up-to-date on the Oscar action, or select "Direct" mode and choose the cameras you wish to view. As an added bonus, you can navigate to award-worthy recipes from "The Chew" for the perfect Oscar-party cocktail and snacks, and cast your vote for winners through the "My Picks" option. (iOS, Android, Kindle)
Zeebox is a useful app for people who want to utilize a second screen while watching the awards coverage on TV. Once you select your cable provider, the app shows what's hot on TV by displaying what is playing now as well as what is up next. Swipe to the left to see a carousel of tiles indicating a specific channel's lineup. You can "book" a show to watch, and by logging into Facebook or Twitter see what you're friends are watching, too. The advantage of an app like Zeebox on Oscar night? You can chat with your friends who are also watching the Oscar's, and use your iPhone as a remote control, too.
Guess the Movie
This app, developed by Jinfra, will put your movie knowledge to the test. The game contains several categories broken down by level. Once you select a category, the app displays a series of tiles with cartoon-like images that function as a clue to the answer. Some images are portraits and others are a series of objects intended to signify the title to a movie. The more clues you get, the further along you advance. If you're stumped, tap the "Free Hints" button for some help. The game's images are basic, nothing more than a compilation of clip art, but the challenge is fun.
Everyone from the advanced film aficionado to the most amateur of movie-goers will find IMDb a handy app to have by their side during Oscar night. Inevitably, there is some discussion or debate about some actor or director who was involved in some movie you swear you thought you saw. IMDb will help you curb your curiosity and get to the bottom of that debate. The app contains more than 2 million movie and TV titles and more than 4 million actors and actresses, directors and crew. And this year, the app includes an Oscars section containing a list of nominees, as well as photos from the red carpet and updated results on the winners.
E! Live From the Red Carpet
With news, photos and videos, this app has you covered when it comes to what's developing and breaking on the red carpet. Since E! is known for its fashion coverage, you can bet the app will deliver the latest on Oscar frocks: the do's and the don'ts, the top 10s and the must-sees all aggregated together for your gawking pleasure.
But the app isn't just for the Oscars. Users can peruse photo and video galleries from previous events, too, such as the SAG awards, Sundance and the Golden Globes. For iPad users, the app sets itself apart by allowing users to scroll through and zoom in on hi-res image galleries, too. (iOS, Android, Windows Phone)