ABC’s 20/20 Oscar special: 'Before they were Famous'


As the 82nd Annual Academy Awards Ceremony draws near, ABC News’ “20/20” will air a special Oscars-themed edition of the broadcast. “Before They Were Famous” brings movie-lovers and celebrity watchers around the country never-before-seen photos, clips and recently-uncovered home video of Hollywood’s hottest stars before they were up for acting’s biggest prize. Anchored by Deborah Roberts, with Nick Watt reporting, “Before They Were Famous” airs TUESDAY, MARCH 2 (10:01-11:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network.

In addition to long-lost footage and old photos, the special features the surprising stories of how some of the nominees got their big breaks, with candid interviews from their former co-stars and family members. George Clooney’s father, Nick Clooney, takes ABC cameras inside the actor’s childhood home in Kentucky and shares stories and private family photos from his superstar son’s early years.

Sandra Bullock’s childhood friend shares stories and rarely seen photos of the first-time nominee as a high school cheerleader in Virginia.

Actor Beau Bridges, the brother of five-time Oscar nominee Jeff Bridges, talks about his brother’s early years, including his start as a child actor in the landmark TV series “Sea Hunt,” and about life as the son of a Hollywood icon. The special also features an exclusive interview with the man Oscar nominee Mo’Nique credited with her success at the recent Golden Globe Awards. Mo’Nique’s husband, Sidney Hicks, takes ABC cameras backstage at the breakout star’s television talk show and talks candidly about the early years with the talented comedienne turned actress.

“Before They Were Famous” profiles all of this year’s Oscar-nominated actors and actresses, focusing on the stars’ earliest jobs and acting roles, and featuring interviews with many former co-stars — from Lindsay Wagner, who starred in the 1989 TV movie, “The Bionic Showdown,” with a then-unknown Sandra Bullock, and Academy Award-winning actress Rita Moreno, who co-starred on television’s “The Electric Company” in the 70’s with a young Morgan Freeman, to actor Wesley Snipes, who starred with nominee Woody Harrelson in “White Men Can’t Jump,” and Cybil Shepherd, who starred opposite Jeff Bridges in his first major film role in the 1971 classic, “The Last Picture Show.”

The special also explores the common themes in the early careers of past and present nominees. From all of the stars who got their starts on soap operas, to those who “screamed” their way to stardom in horror films, many of this year’s nominees have something in common with past winners.

John Green is the executive producer of “Before They Were Famous.”

(source: ABC)