SAN JOSE, Calif. (KTVU) - Fresh off an Oscar win, San Jose native John Ottman isn't forgetting his Bay Area roots. Ottman, who won for best film editing for Bohemian Rhapsody, gave a nod to his hometown during Sunday’s acceptance speech.
Ottman said it was either marching band or a film-making course at Gunderson High School. He chose film and as they say the rest is history. He then studied at De Anza College and then went onto USC’s film school. His childhood neighborhood and his family couldn't be more proud.
At Sunday's Academy Awards, Ottman is seen hugging his fellow nominees and as he stood on Hollywood's biggest stage, he thanked his colleagues and his parents giving credit to his upbringing in San Jose.
“Lastly, this goes to my parents on their fireplace mantle because they encouraged me to do whatever I wanted to do when I was a kid whether it was writing music, which was a mystery to them, or making films in their garage on Normington Way in San Jose, California,” said Ottman.
Ottman spoke to KTVU about his his first nomination and first win.
“For me there wasn't a moment of absolute excitement,” said Ottman. “It's a moment of absolute relief and a little bit of shock even though you knew there was a possibility for sure.”
The 54-year-old admits it was a fantasy of his to win an Oscar. If he was ever nominated, he'd bring his parents. His 85-year-old mother Mary Ottman was his date.
“Oh i'm so thrilled I’’m going to start crying again,” said Ottman. “I’m so happy he mentioned Normington Way, that was a dream come true to live there.”
Ottman grew up in South San Jose, as a teenager, he made films in the garage of his childhood home on Normington Way. Neighbor Tom Small remembers being a cast member in Ottman’s movies.
“He then announced he was from Normington Way in San Jose and I went oh my God,” said Small. “John, you know what you just did. You shouted out the neighborhood. It's amazing and it's been crazy ever since.”
Sister Perri Hiser who lives in San Jose said the honor was a long time coming. Ottman worked on a number of film as a film editor and film composer. His biggest projects before Bohemian Rhapsody include The Usual Suspects and X-Men.
“I’m just so proud of him because everything he has worked for is being recognized,” said Hiser. “He's being recognized for the talent that he is.”
“The advice I always give to anyone in this business even if it's not what you intended to do, just do it, say yes, because you never know where one thing will lead,” said Ottman.