Verizon's 5G provides an immersive experience to Sunday's Oscars

The company said viewers will feel as if they were actually at the event through a portal, which will take them to the middle of the red carpet, the press room and backstage.

amanda-seyfriend-in-mank.jpg

Amanda Seyfried as Marion Davies in Netflix's "Mank"

Image: Netflix

Most people are unlikely to experience the Hollywood glitz, glamor, ebullient wins and hidden disappointments of the annual Oscars ceremonies and its requisite rituals in person, in the audience and certainly not backstage. But for Sunday's 93rd Academy Awards, Verizon will use 5G-powered portals to provide viewers "the most exclusive backstage access in Oscar history," the company announced.

Using high speed, low latency and the "massive" bandwidth of Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband Technology, viewers are "transported" in real time to the iconic red carpet, the press room and backstage areas throughout the event, which will be held at Los Angeles' Union Station (where the actual attendees will arrive and attend), the Dolby Theatre (where it was held from 2002 to the last pre-COVID-19 show) and a more recently added London venue.

The red carpet portal is open from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. ET, and the press room/engraving station (where winners have their names added to their statuettes) is open from 8-11:30 pm. ET.

During the broadcast, Verizon will air seven ad spots featuring teachers, first responders, small business owners and families who used the Verizon network "to do extraordinary things" throughout the pandemic. 

The portals are accessed through verizon.com/5Gportal, and @Verizon on Twitter and Instagram.  

SEE: Edge computing adoption to increase through 2026; organizations cautious about adding 5G to the mix (TechRepublic Premium)

Confirmed presenters include Angela Bassett, Halle Berry, Bong Joon Ho, Don Cheadle, Bryan Cranston, Laura Dern, Harrison Ford, Regina King, Marlee Matlin, Rita Moreno, Joaquin Phoenix, Brad Pitt, Reese Witherspoon, Renée Zellweger and Zendaya.

While at previous Oscars, the nominees for best song have been performed live, this year, pre-recorded versions will air on a 90-minute pre-show special, "Oscars: Into the Spotlight." 

  • In Los Angeles, Celeste and Daniel Pemberton perform "Hear My Voice" from "The Trial of the Chicago 7." 

  • H.E.R. will sing "Fight For You" from "Judas and the Black Messiah.

  • Laura Pausini and Diane Warren duet for the Italian-language "Io Si (Seen)" from "The Life Ahead." 

  • Leslie Odom Jr will sing "Speak Now" from "One Night In Miami."

The ceremony has traditionally been held in late March, but the pandemic pushed it to Sunday's April 25 date and due to coronavirus-related delays in film shoots and schedules, the Oscars' eligibility period was expanded to cover films released through the end of February 2021.

"Mank," which is available on Netflix was the most nominated film, garnering 10 nods. The following films each had six nominations: "The Father," "Judas and the Black Messiah," "Minari," "Nomadland," "Sound of Metal" and "The Trial of the Chicago 7." 

The Oscar ceremony will be held host-free. The last show that featured a host was in 2018 with late-night talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel.

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By N.F. Mendoza

N.F. Mendoza is a writer at TechRepublic and based in Los Angeles. She has a BA in Broadcast Journalism and Cinema Critical Studies and a Master's of Professional Writing, both from USC. Nadine has more than 20 years experience as a journalist coveri...