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Best Actress Oscars: Good For Careers, Bad For Marriages

Best Actress Oscars: Good For Careers, Bad For Marriages (photo)

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The Hollywood Reporter has a piece about a new study from researchers at the University of Toronto and Carnegie Mellon University. According to “Oscar Curse: Status Dynamics and Gender Differences in Marital Survival” by H. Colleen Stuart, Sue Moon, and Tiziana Casciaro, Best Actress Oscars may be great for a woman’s career, but it’s deadly for her marriage. Stuart, Moon, and Casciaro found that Best Actress winners were “1.68 times” more likely to get a divorce than actresses who lost in the category.

This, I suppose, is fairly obvious from an anecdotal perspective, to anyone who pays attention to Academy Awards and Hollywood divorce rates. Many recent winners, including Kate Winslet, Hilary Swank, and last year’s Best Actress Sandra Bullock have all faced this so-called “Oscar curse.” Far more interesting, I think, than this observable fact is Stuart, Moon, and Casciaro’s finding that the higher risk of divorce only existed in the Best Actress category, not in the Best Actor category. Apparently the addition of a Best Actress Oscar has a destructive impact on a marriage in a way a Best Actor Oscar does not. This most certainly has something to do with gender and power roles within marriages and society at large.

If you’re curious, two of this year’s nominees are married: Annette Bening, to longtime husband Warren Beatty, and Nicole Kidman, to Keith Urban (Kidman broke up with Tom Cruise shortly before she won her first Oscar back in 2002, so I’m not sure if that counts for the curse). The 2011 frontrunner in the category, Natalie Portman, is engaged to be married to her boyfriend Benjamin Millepied. For her sake, I’m hoping she’s not in the 1.68 percent.

In fact, I wish all these women the best. I even picked a picture for this post — nominee Jennifer Lawrence from “Winter’s Bone” — who isn’t married, has never been married, just so I could been accused of jinxing a relationship down the line if God forbid the Oscar marriage curse strikes again.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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