Oscars bring in big bets, tight security and entertaining apps

The Oscars are one of the biggest non-sporting events for gambling in the U.S.

Glitz, glam and… gambling?

The Super Bowl is over, and gamblers looking for the next big event to bet on are homing in on the Oscars.

AOL reported in 2011 that the Oscars may be the second-most gambled upon non-sporting event in the United States, behind presidential elections.

Also in 2011, the Nevada Gaming Commission revised its rules to allow betting on non-sports events in Vegas casinos, betting site gambling911 reported. But, gambling911 said, none of the casinos is actually taking bets; that's because the winners are chosen in advance, making the outcome "predetermined."

Still, there are plenty of places online to take bets and plenty of Oscars gambling money changing hands.

Another gambling site, sports odds, pegged "Argo" as the likely winner for Best Picture, with -800 odds. "Lincoln" is the underdog at +400 odds.

The best actress category is also a close race, with the favorite, Jennifer Lawrence, at only -200. However, sports odds advises against betting anything on best actor. Daniel Day-Lewis is overwhelmingly favored to win for his performance in "Lincoln."  

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Betting isn't the only thing at the Oscars going digital. This year, a slew of apps promise to help Hollywood lovers delve deeper into the awards.

E! offers a Live From the Red Carpet app for free for iPhone or Android that covers not just the Oscars but also the Golden Globes, Grammy's and other events.

IMDB also has a free app that provides in depth information on all the movies and stars at the Oscars.

Frequency is a video app that draws content from various online channels and social networks. Users can build a customized feed optimized for their interests or a specific event, such as the Oscars.


The Los Angeles Police Department isn't taking any chances, though. Security will be tight at the award,s and streets near the venue will be closed.

The Los Angeles Times reported Sunday that there are no extra precautions being taken this year in the wake of the recent crime spree of former police officer Christopher Dorner. But, according to the Times, even typical Oscars security includes snipers on rooftop, checkpoints manned by uniformed officers and street closures near the venue.


One thing that did slip past security was celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck's food tray.

Puck rolled a tray out onto the carpet to show off just a few of the goodies that will be served at the annual Governor's Ball following the show.

Making the scene were baked potatoes with caviar, smoked salmon, chicken pot pie with truffle, Kobe steak, sushi, sashimi and of course Puck's famous gold-dusted chocolate Oscar statuettes.


Host Seth MacFarlane may prove the least predictable element of the show this year. His opening bit included "Star Trek" captain William Shatner and "Harry Potter" star Daniel Radcliffe.

Jennifer Lawrence also proved a wild card. The bleeping started early for the charmingly blunt Lawrence, a best actress nominee for "Silver Linings Playbook," as ABC silenced her cheeky red carpet response to actress Kristin Chenoweth.

The two were bonding over "Dance Moms," the Lifetime reality series, when Lawrence asked Chenoweth if she liked it too.

Chenoweth: "Is the pope Catholic?"

Lawrence: "... ?" (We can't print her reply here, but the reference was to something a bear does in the woods.)

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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