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Most reactions from Oscar winners are the same outrageously dull boilerplate, thanking the Academy and their co-stars, expressing incredible gratitude that they've been recognized at all. The oldest line in the book is to say that you were still asleep when you were surprised by a call from your agent, but luckily most of the nominees seem to have retired that line this year. Still, is it at all possible to come up with an interesting way to react to your own Oscar nomination other than screaming in glee?

If you're a Pulitzer Prize-winning genius, I guess so. Tony Kushner, who wrote the screenplay for Lincoln and whose play Angels in America is a bona fide modern classic, was in the airport waiting to fly from New York to Los Angeles when the nominees were announced this morning-- and thanks to one of his fellow passengers, had an incredibly memorable story to tell:

“I'm tremendously honored to be a nominee in the company of so many writers and filmmakers whose work I admire. I'm very grateful to Steven and Kathy, to Daniel, Sally, Tommy Lee and the whole cast, to Rick, Joanna, Janusz, Mike and John and everyone who made Lincoln happen. I'm overwhelmed by the Academy's response to the film. I heard that I'd been nominated while waiting to take off on a plane from JFK to LAX. James Gandolfini, who's sitting in front of me, gave me a hug and a kiss, so I'm about as happy as can be. ”

That's especially gallant of Gandolfini, given that his director in Zero Dark Thirty missed out on a Best Director nomination, and his other film of the season-- Not Fade Away-- wasn't nominated at all. But that's the spirit of Oscar morning-- everyone gets to celebrate for the nominees they support, even if they didn't make the list themselves. And Kushner probably has plenty more celebrating to do, since his Lincoln screenplay is a locked-down frontrunner for the Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar.

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