Lara Spencer

Lara Spencer: The (Oscars) Insider

March 6, 2010 at 7:50 pm , by

One of the things I love most about awards shows, especially the Oscars, is the red carpet coverage. I’m riveted by the glitz, glam and gowns, but I’m just as fascinated by what goes on behind the scenes. Lara Spencer, anchor of CBS’ The Insider, was nice enough to give us a glimpse inside the industry’s biggest night.

Lara Spencer

Photo courtesy of CBS Television Distribution

For her, Oscar prep begins in January. “I start screening the films that are likely to be nominated, so that means a lot of movie nights with my friends,” Spencer explains. “They eat popcorn while I take notes!”

Though she puts her notes to good use when she interviews celebs on the red carpet, she also relies on her ability to improvise. “You can prepare all you want, but you never know what what will happen in the moment,” Spencer says. “You don’t know what mood a star will be in, or if they’re going to show up in a really fun outfit or with an interesting date. I kind of go with the flow and feel them out. My mantra is to be prepared, but also be prepared to throw all your notes out the window.”

On TV, Oscar night seems impossibly glamorous and exciting, but Spencer’s experience in the trenches is quite different. “It’s high pressure for us and it’s high pressure for the stars as well—you can definitely sense which nominated actors are nervous, and you can feel the tension. But when the ceremony is over and everyone heads to the parties, it’s like a giant weight has been lifted. It’s time to celebrate, regardless of who won.”

Check your local listings for The Insider to see Spencer’s coverage of the Oscars red carpet on Monday, March 8th.