Ottosson, Affleck Win Oscar Gold for the Palisades

Paul Ottosson in his Sony Studios office in Culver City. Rich Schmitt/Staff Photographer
Paul Ottosson in his Sony Studios office in Culver City. Rich Schmitt/Staff Photographer

Palisadian Paul Ottosson won his third Academy Award on Sunday, this time for Best Sound Editing for “Zero Dark Thirty.” His previous awards were for Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing for “The Hurt Locker.”

Swedish-born Ottosson (featured in the February 21 Palisadian-Post) tied with the team from “Skyfall,” Per Hallberg (also Swedish) and Karen Baker Landers, and all walked away with a golden statuette.

“Just two categories before it happened,” Ottosson told the Post, “I asked a fellow nominee, ‘What happens if there is a tie between us? Do they pull straws or roll dice?’”

Even though he had been up on the stage twice in 2010, Ottosson still had butterflies. “I was not nervous at all until about a half-hour before, then I became really nervous. Karen [his wife] was nervous the whole time. She was a wreck.”

Unlike some winners who give a laundry list of thank yous, Ottosson opted to keep it simple and thank people in person.

Dedicating his award to his five-year-old son, Theo, who watched the awards show with his grandparents, Ottosson said Tuesday that


many of Theo’s classmates at Village School came up to him on Monday and were very excited.

“He better not ask for anything else for a long time,” Ottosson joked. “Or ask for something simpler.”

As reported in last week’s Post, Theo was waiting for his Oscar because the family already had “one for mommy and one for daddy.” The three statuettes on their living room mantle share space with two of Theo’s sports trophies.

Ottosson emphasized that you can’t plan on ever winning an Oscar because there are simply so many things that have to fall into place, including hard work and working on the “right project at the right time.”

He is currently working on “White House Down,” directed by Roland Emmerich and starring Channing Tatum and Jamie Foxx, which is about terrorists taking over the White House. He has previously worked with Emmerich on “Anonymous” and “2012.”

Ottosson summed up what winning is like. “It is a fantastic moment. When you stand up on the stage and see all these people in front of you, it is quite incredible. I am not used to being in the spotlight. It is a tremendously humbling experience. You feel warm and fuzzy for a long time afterwards.”

Pacific Palisades had one other Oscar winner: Ben Affleck, whose 7-year-old daughter, Violet, won her division that morning in the Pacific Palisades Spelling Bee. He won Best Picture honors for “Argo,” though he was not nominated for directing the film. Affleck previously won in 1998 for Best Original Screenplay for “Good Will Hunting.”

Palisades High grad Rick Carter won for Best Production Design in “Lincoln” (he previously won for Best Art Direction for “Avatar”), but fellow Pali alum Thomas Newman, who was nominated for composing the music for the Bond film “Skyfall,” did not win.

Other nominated Palisadians included Sally Field for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of Mary Todd Lincoln in “Lincoln,” and Steven Spielberg as Best Director for “Lincoln.”