What Was Up With...

updated 03/15/2004 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/15/2004 AT 01:00 AM EST

Who is John Carrabino, the man whom Renée Zellweger thanked so effusively while accepting her Best Supporting Actress award?
"My beloved John Carrabino," as Zellweger called him, is the star's longtime manager. After her turn in 1994's The Return of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, he helped her land a little film called Jerry Maguire. An ever grateful Zellweger told James Lipton last year that it was Carrabino who "just thought, for some reason, that I should be in a movie with Tom Cruise. It didn't seem to occur to anybody else, but it did to him."

Renée also thanked her "immigrant mom and dad." Where are they from?
Explains the actress: "My mother came from Norway and my father was Swiss. My parents both immigrated to America in the 1960s." Renée's dad, Emil, and his wife, Kjellfrid, eventually settled in Katy, Texas, where Renée was raised. "Because my parents were from someplace else," says Zellweger, "they provided me with a window out onto the world."

Did Jack Black and Will Ferrell get paid by Del Taco for their song "You're Boring"?
Alas, Black is disappointed to report that he and Ferrell received no money for name-dropping the popular Mexican fast food restaurant in their ditty about excruciatingly long-winded acceptance speeches. (Sample lyric: "You're boring/ Look at Catherine Zeta-Jones, she's snoring.") The ballad culminated with a soaring chorus of "You could have rushed up to the stage, but you were lollygagging/ They're turning off your microphone and cutting to a commercial for Del Taco!" "They gave me nothing," says Black, who cowrote the lyrics with Ferrell. "But I assume I'll be getting a lifetime's worth of free tacos now."

Did Lord of the Rings producer Barrie Osborne really date Billy Crystal's cousin?
"Yes, I did," says Osborne, who wondered aloud during his Best Picture acceptance speech if his past relationship with the Oscar host's kin helped Rings win. "Her name was Eileen, and I dated her for three years in high school," recalls Osborne, 60. "I only found out about 10 years ago she was Billy's cousin. [Later] Billy kept asking, 'Who was it?' I told him and he said, 'Oh!' "

Who created the opening short in which Billy Crystal was inserted into scenes from the year's top movies?
The montage—which included such memorable images as Crystal as Gollum—was the work of Troy Miller, director of Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd. Miller had also created similar sequences for Crystal's last three Oscar hosting gigs. "It's never easy and it's very secretive," says Miller about filming the sequences, which were compiled using green screen techniques. However, Crystal was able to recruit pals Jack Nicholson and director Michael Moore to film original footage for this year's bit. (Nicholson played a shades-wearing Gandalf, while Moore was trampled by an elephant after yelling, "Shame on you, hobbits! This is a fictitious war!") "Jack is a great friend of the show, and so is Michael," says Crystal. "I called Jack and he said, 'Where do I show up?' "

Charlize Theron's skin seemed rather...orange. Was that a real tan?
Though she was already sporting a golden glow from a recent vacation in Brazil, Theron looked noticeably darker at the Oscars than she had the night before at the Independent Spirit Awards. According to her longtime makeup artist, Shane Paish, the actress got a color boost just before Sunday's ceremonies. "I focused on a'30s-esque look and made her skin dark and tan, but used metallic powder for a more modern feel," says Paish, noting that he burnished her skin with Dior Terra Bella bronzer. The makeover didn't stop there: Theron also had her hair cut into a chin-length bob.

Was Liv Tyler going for a sexy secretary look with those vintage-inspired glasses, or is she just a closet geek?
The actress, who fiddled with a pair of Selima Optique frames while introducing some of the Best Song nominees, says her specs were strictly utilitarian and not a retro fashion statement. "The last time I presented at the Oscars I could see the monitor," says Tyler. "But when I went to the SAG Awards the other day, I couldn't see a thing! I tried to buy contacts but one of them didn't fit. I didn't have time to get [new glasses], so I had to wear these."

What was that instrument Sting played while performing Cold Mountain's "You Will Be My Ain True Love"?
Sting was cranking a hurdy-gurdy, which sounds like a cross between bagpipes and a fiddle. His decision to use the unusual instrument (the one on the show was made in 1747 by a Parisian craftsman) was surprising, since the hurdy-gurdy wasn't widely played during the Civil War and hadn't been used on the film's soundtrack.

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