For most of the country, the Oscars are just a one-night affair: a few hours of glamorous gowns, tearful acceptance speeches, and cheers for the biggest and best movies of the past 12 months. For Hollywood, though, the excitement starts long before -- and ends long after -- the Sunday night telecast.
This year's Academy Awards, held on Feb. 24 and hosted by Ted creator Seth MacFarlane, were no exception. Us Weekly has the inside scoop on what went down behind the scenes before, during, and after Hollywood's most glamorous night, from how the stars got ready at home to where (and with whom!) they partied the night away. Check out the extended timeline below!
Friday, February 22
6:59 p.m. Jump for joy! Beasts of the Southern Wild star Quvenzhane Wallis, the youngest Best Actress nominee in Oscars history, hops playfully on one foot amid a big group at the Women in Film Pre-Oscar Cocktail Party at L.A. eatery Fig & Olive, hosted by Perrier Jouet, MAC Cosmetics, and MaxMara.
7:16 p.m. Octavia Spencer takes the mic at Fig & Olive to talk about the Women in Film organization and its many trailblazers. She jokingly calls herself "barely Halle" -- a cute play on Oscar winner Halle Berry's name.
7:40 p.m. Doting dad-to-be! Mario Lopez rubs the belly of his pregnant wife, Courtney Mazza, at the QVC Red Carpet Style Party at the Four Seasons Hotel.
8:53 p.m. Meanwhile, at the WME (William Morris Endeavor) shindig at Ari Emanuel's home in L.A.'s Brentwood neighborhood, all eyes are on supermodel Gisele Bundchen and Tom Brady as they descend the stairs together like Hollywood royalty.
9:28 p.m. Bromance alert! Taylor Lautner and Patrick Schwarzenegger -- both of whom were once linked to Taylor Swift -- are inseparable at the WME bash, where they're spotted hanging out by a table full of Southern food.
Saturday, February 23
12:10 a.m. Did someone say "dance party"? At the United Talent Agency party in Beverly Hills, a leather-skirt-wearing Lake Bell shows off some sexy moves to Prince's "When Doves Cry."
1 a.m. At Kevin Huvane's super-exclusive late-night after-party at his Beverly Hills house -- post-CAA bash -- Joe Francis mingles with Cindy Crawford and Rande Gerber.
1:20 a.m. Before heading to Hollywood hotspot Bootsy Bellows, Daniel Radcliffe resists the urge to take advantage of the "brilliant" coffee and tea station outside the UTA bash, saying, "I'll be up until the sun comes up!"
11:30 a.m. Lincoln star Daniel Day-Lewis gets the final fitting for his Oscars tux with Domenico Vacca the Hotel Bel Air.
12:45 p.m. Cheers! Jeremy Renner jumps behind the bar in the Kindle Fire HD and IMDb green room during the Independent Spirit Awards to make vodka tonics for his friends.
1:07 p.m. Reunited and it feels so...serious? Former Saturday Night Live co-stars Amy Poehler and Fred Armisen look deep in conversation at the Film Independent Spirit Awards in Santa Monica, Calif. -- until Armisen puts his hand on his heart and Poehler stars laughing.
1:28 p.m. Bathroom break! Minutes before the Spirit Awards, Jennifer Lawrence makes a quick dash to the Porta Potties, where her team waits outside with a bottle of hand sanitizer.
3:03 p.m. Tropical getaway, anyone? At the Official Presenter Gift Lounge Backstage at the Film Independent Spirit Awards, Kerry Washington stops by the Caribbean Living Magazine section, where she gushes over a three-night, all-inclusive stay on Cayo Espanto. "You have no idea how much this is needed!" she exclaims.
7:49 p.m. At Hollywood eatery Madeo for the Chanel pre-Oscar dinner, Kate Bosworth orders Buffalo Trace bourbon on the rocks. As she waits with fiance Michael Polish, a girl comes up to compliment her on her dress, to which she replies, "Thanks! It's space-age couture."
9:15 p.m. Victoria's Secret Angel Alessandra Ambrosio gets down with Mario Testino at the opening of his exhibit at Prism with Dom Perignon.
11 p.m. At West Hollywood hotspot Soho House for the Weinstein bash, James Franco's brother Dave holds hands with his girlfriend, Community actress Alison Brie.
11:02 p.m. At the Night Before party at the Beverly Hills Hotel, Ray Liotta asks DJ Ruckus to play some disco, saying, "People here are old!" When "Saturday Night Fever" comes on, he starts dancing.
Sunday, February 24
12:15 a.m. Kellan Lutz shows off his buff arms as he carries his swag bags from the Night Before Party at the Beverly Hills Hotel, where he catches up with fellow Twilight alum Peter Facinelli.
12 a.m. Abracadabra! Magician David Kwong performs a few tricks for Chris Tucker and a group of the actor's friends.
12:46 a.m. Love is in the air at the Weinstein party, where Adrien Brody whispers sweet nothings into girlfriend Lara Lieto's ear.
2 a.m. Hanging out with Bill Skarsgard at Chateau Marmont for the WME/Anonymous Content bash, Joseph Gordon-Levitt admits to being nervous about performing with host Seth MacFarlane.
9 a.m. Silver Linings Playbook nominee Bradley Cooper squeezes in a workout at Soul Cycle in Brentwood before the Oscars night craziness gets under way.
12:30 p.m. And he's off! Hours before the red carpet opens, host Seth MacFarlane is picked up from his house by a limo.
4:23 p.m. Priorities, indeed. Outside the Dolby Theatre, Jennifer Hudson tells Us her son wouldn't take a photo with her because he was too busy watching Power Rangers.
4:27 p.m. On the red carpet before the Academy Awards, Jennifer Lawrence tells E! that she recognized Jennifer Aniston by the back of her hair. "Do you know how famous that is?!" she jokes.
4:37 p.m. Anne Hathaway, in a pink duchesse satin gown by Prada, is definitely on her husband's best dressed list. Gushing about his wife on the red carpet, Adam Shulman tells Us: "I think she looks gorgeous!"
4:51 p.m. Rock the vote! Outside the Dolby Theatre, Queen Latifah dishes to Us that she let her Facebook and Twitter followers choose her Oscars dress, a white silk crepe gown by Badgley Mischka Couture. She also hints that she'd love to play Miss Hannigan in the new movie adaptation of Annie.
5 p.m. Kristen Stewart is a pro at walking on crutches. She speeds by in a blush, strapless couture gown by Reem Acra.
6:28 p.m. Sexy swag! David Arquette pops up in the press room to ask Paperman director John Kahrs what he's looking forward to in his gift bag. When Kahrs says he doesn't know, Arquette exclaims, "There are condoms!"
6:38 p.m. Southern girls unite! Reese Witherspoon is at the bar inside the Dolby Theatre with husband Jim Toth when a fan approaches and mentions that she's from Georgia, to which Witherspoon replies, "Oh my God, I'm from Nashville!"
7:45 p.m. At Elton John's Oscars party in West Hollywood, Kim Kardashian briefly chats up Google CEO Eric Schmidt.
8 p.m. Inside the Dolby Theatre, Melissa McCarthy tells Us that her voluminous 'do was inspired by Adele. "I love me some Adele," the actress gushes.
8:44 p.m. Elton John partygoers Chris Colfer and Anna Paquin gasp when Jennifer Lawrence trips on her way to accept the Best Actress Oscar.
10:05 a.m. Fresh off her riveting performance of "Skyfall," Adele kicks back with a strong drink at Hollywood & Highland for the Governor's Ball.
10:15 p.m. Elsewhere at the party, Anne Hathaway gets her Best Supporting Actress Oscar engraved.
10:30 p.m. Argo producer George Clooney and pal Rande Gerber celebrate the film's big win with shots of Casmigos tequila at Craig's.
10:56 p.m. Nicole Richie and Joel Madden look "genuinely in love" as they pose for a sweet picture at Elton John's shindig.
11:54 p.m. Wardrobe malfunction! At the Governor's Ball, Jennifer Lawrence sits in a parked SUV as someone pins her ripped dress, a slinky beaded gown by Calvin Klein.
Monday, February 25
12:30 a.m. Late night for Quvenzhane Wallis! The 9-year-old nominee arrives at Fox Searchlight's Oscar bash at Lure Nightclub, where she makes a beeline for the dance floor.
2:25 a.m. Bravo, Catherine! Still radiant from her performance of "All That Jazz" at the Oscars, Catherine Zeta-Jones is stopped by a pal who raves about her "perfect" song-and-dance.
2:30 a.m. Leslie Mann and Michelle Trachtenberg fawn over Kate Bosworth's engagement ring.
2:37 a.m. That's a wrap! Best Director winner Ang Lee poses for a picture with other Life of Pi Oscar winners at the Vanity Fair after-party at the Sunset Tower Hotel.