After joining Fandango in the fall of 2012, chief correspondent Dave Karger quickly began entertaining the ticket-buying masses with The Frontrunners, a look at actors and artists in the thick of film awards season. The distinguishing feature of the show, one of several Fandango series hosted by Karger, is a handicapping of the trophy hunt through the prism of a single, chosen scene from each guest’s contending film.
When Karger kicks off Season Three of The Frontrunners next month, he will have another stellar guest and a synergistic new broadcast partner. The conversation with Emma Stone (Birdman) will be prominently featured on Fandango, per usual, starting November 12 and highlighted on an edition of NBCUniversal sister franchise Access Hollywood. The plan is to have Karger drop by weekly on the show to frame and share excerpts from The Frontrunners.
“Access Hollywood is a show that I have been very involved with for over a decade,” Karger tells FishbowlNY via telephone, following our attendance of an intimate Tuesday night soiree hosted by Fandango in the Penthouse Bar of LA’s Soho House. “I’ve appeared as an analyst, a guest and as the Oscars lunch correspondent for the past four years.”
“It’s a relationship that is very important to me and Access Hollywood is a show that I really personally like,” he adds. “So to have an even more official affiliation with them this awards season is really exciting.”
In addition to Stone, Karger has two other Season Three episodes in the can: Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything) and Phil Lord–Chris Miller (writer-directors of The LEGO Movie). Other guests this year will include Angelina Jolie, Reese Witherspoon and Edward Norton.
Asked to name a couple of highlights from the first two seasons of The Frontrunners, Karger does not hesitate. “Hugh Jackman was utterly fascinating,” he recalls. “The episode was for Les Miserables, and we picked the song “Who Am I?” He was so excited by the single-scene concept of the show that at one point, he stood up and started singing. He was technically out of frame, so we had to use the behind-the-scenes camera to capture him.”
“Then, last year, for Season Two, we shot Lupita Nyong’o at the Dolby Theatre in November,” Karger continues. “It was the first time she had ever set foot there. I told her, “This is where the Oscars are,” and she said, “Oh wow!””
“She was excited to be there, and I remember saying to her that I had a feeling this was not the last time she would be in the theater. And of course, four months later, she won for 12 Years a Slave.”