A SILENT MOVIE may have cleaned up on the awards front but most of the Academy Award ceremony’s memorable moments came from the reactions and words of the night’s presenters and winners.
Billy Crystal, hosting his ninth Oscar ceremony, was also welcomed back with open arms after the panned efforts of Anne Hathaway and James Franco last year.
1. Justin Bieber is accepted by the Oscars crowd.
The teen star popped up in Billy Crystal’s opening montage with the line, “I’ll bring the 18 to 24 demographic.” He then went on to call the host ‘Bob’, setting up the numerous age jokes which would be a large feature of the night. Biebs got some laughs and probably did do wonders for the Academy’s ratings with a younger audience.
YouTube Credit: SahilRaviKumar
Also in the opening clips, Crystal puts himself into the nine best picture nominees. He gets more love (literally) from George Clooney as the pair recreate a kiss from The Descendants.
2. PR stunt of the night
Before the ceremony got underway, Sasha Baron Cohen made sure he was part of this morning’s big news by accidently-on-purpose pouring fake ashes on Ryan Seacrest. Tina Fey tried to make the popular presenter feel better about the whole debacle. You are now a “victim of comedy” she tells him during her red carpet interview. He later tweeted that he should have followed his mother’s advice.
3. We all love a bit of escapism but Crystal tried to keep it real:
Nothing can take the sting out of the world’s economic problems like watching millionaires present gold statues to each other.
4. Presenters can be funny
Emma Stone with Ben Stiller and Gwyneth Paltrow with Robert Downey Jr. were both particulary funny twosomes and, in Stone’s own words, ‘full of banter ‘ in their presenting gigs.
“Look kid, I get it, you’re new and quirky – it gets old fast with this crowd,” Stiller warns Stone before she hits back with a quip about his previous solo efforts.
YouTube Credit: ITN
YouTube Credit: ITN
5. There’s always an F-bomb.
This year, the dubious recognition when to TJ Martin, one of the men behind The Undefeated which won the documentary feature prize. He apologised after coming off stage, stating it wasn’t planned but came from the heart.
A less obvious banned word was uttered by Best Actor Jean Dujardin but censors failed to catch it because he said it in his native French.
6. I love you, America
French actor Jean Dujardin would have been deemed the unlikeliest to utter those words. Actually, his whole speech was a highlight of the night despite his vocabulary slip. He came off as the most joyous of all the winners and by the time the orchestra cut him off he was stamping his feet, turning red in the face and proclaiming his love for everyone in the theatre.
7. Streep fatigue?
Meryl Streep’s victory speech after winning her third Academy Award also impressed.
Humble but honest, she said:
When they called my name, I had this feeling that I could hear half of America, going ‘Oh, no. Oh come on, why? Her? Again.’ You know? But…whatever.
As Crystal noted, Streep has been nominated 17 times and she deserves the award for her gracious losing face on the other 14 occasions.
8. Political message of the hour
On accepting the first ever Oscar for a foreign film writer/director Asghar Farhadi dedicated the award to his fellow people in Iran.
Describing Iran as a “rich and ancient culture that has been hidden under the heavy dust of politics,” he offered the award to the people of his country who ”respect all culture and civilisations and despise all hostility and resentment.”