The 93rd Annual Academy Awards began and ended with a few strange comments for a variety of reasons. In the opening sequence, Kickoff moderator and One night in Miami Director Regina King was walking through Union Station in Los Angeles as a series of stylish film-style opening credits passed to pretend the entire Academy Awards were one big movie with a thoroughly amazing cast. For a moment, the ceremony felt bold and flashy, like an ambitious, head-high project that we haven’t seen much of in a year of zoom-based awards shows and events postponed or canceled.
And then King stepped on the Oscar set with its small stage and sparsely populated space, socially distant audience tables and minimal human presence, and the bubble burst. All of a sudden we were back to the same kind of nervous smile that we’d dominated at public live events last year.
Like any commercial meeting during COVID-19, the 2021 Oscars were also facing a major challenge. It comes after a year of pandemic in which large gatherings have often been banned or received significant negative press. Other award shows found various solutions that never had the glamor or intimacy that the Oscars are aiming for – for example, the Golden Globes ceremony took the hosts to the opposite coasts, making of their social distance and the small audience they played in front of a joke.
Academy Awards producers Jesse Collins, Stacey Sher and Steven Soderbergh tried to go in a different direction with the theme “This is all a movie full of stars”. King said the evening was “an Oscars movie with a cast of over 200 nominees. But she also reassured the audience that while presenters and receivers were maskless, they “followed all of the strict protocols that got us back to work,” with behind-the-scenes masks replaced and social distancing respected. With many of the recipients delivering their speeches from remote locations and the audience split between Union Station and a sparsely populated Dolby Theater in Hollywood, the ceremony felt small – exactly the opposite of what the academy usually wants.
There were a handful of highlights in his acceptance speech for Best Supporting Actor, including Daniel Kaluuya proudly explaining how he got on that stage: “My mom met my dad, they had sex, I’m here. It is wonderful. I’m so happy to be alive, ”he said happily. It was one of the biggest laughs of the night – not just because of the comment itself, but also because of the footage of his mother and sister’s disbelief.
Another small highlight: Harrison Ford, who presented the award for best film editing and dry read a handful of studio editing notes from his 1982 film Blade runner, including “Why do we need the third cut to the eggs?” and “Until Zora’s death, the film is deadly boring. This movie gets worse with every showing. “
But for the most part, the 93rd Academy Awards were cautious, with relatively few speeches going into political territory or producing memorable moments. Reactions on social media seemed more subdued than usual during the ceremony, save for a wave of disbelief during the ceremony traditional segment “In Memorium”who went through his list of late Hollywood elite of the year with a vivacity that felt downright disrespectful.
But two moments stand out from the evening for completely opposite reasons. Glenn Close stole the show during the undeniable padding of the ceremony, an Oscars music quiz game where Questlove DJed clips of songs while pre-show host Lil Rel Howery confronted viewers and asked if those songs were nominees be winners or none. When asked about Experience Unlimited’s song “Da Butt”, Close not only said she knew the song, she also got up and danced.
And then there was the strange final moment of the ceremony. Contrary to tradition, the producers planned the Best Picture Award – which, as expected, went to Nomadland – before Best Actress and Best Actor categories, almost certainly on the assumption that the late Chadwick Boseman would posthumously win Best Actor, and the ceremony could be emotional. Instead, the trophy went to Anthony Hopkins for The father – and Hopkins wasn’t available for a speech, so host Joaquin Phoenix just said the Academy would accept this on his behalf, and the night went to a flat, unsatisfactory end. It’s been an odd year for movies, with no blockbusters and only subdued hype for most of the films that instead debuted through streaming services. But this seemed like the best possible end of 2021: a clear setup, a strange whiff, and the feeling of a diminished, subdued crowd quickly leaving their almost empty observation spots.
Here are all the winners of the 93rd Annual Academy Awards:
Best original script
Winner: Emerald Fennell, Promising young woman
Other nominees: Judas and the Black Messiah, Minari, Sound of Metal, The Chicago Trial 7
Best adapted script
Winner: Christopher Hampton and Florian Zeller, The father
Other nominees: Borat’s subsequent movie, Nomadland, One Night in Miami, The White Tiger
Best international feature
Winner: Another round
Other nominees: Better days; Collective; The man who sold his skin; Quo Vadis, Aidia?
Best supporting actor
Winner: Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the black messiah
Other nominees: Sacha Baron Cohen, The Chicago Trial 7;; Leslie Odom, Jr., One night in Miami;; Paul Raci, Sound of metal;; Lakeith Stanfield, Judas and the black messiah
Best make-up and hair styling
Winners: Jamika Wilson, Mia Neal, Sergio Lopez-Rivera, Ma Rainey’s black bottom
Other nominees: Emma., Hillbilly Elegy, Mank, Pinocchio
Best costume design
Winner: Anne Roth, Ma Rainey’s black bottom
Other nominees: Emma., Mank, Mulan, Pinocchio
Winner: Chloé Zhao, Nomad land
Other nominees: Thomas Vinterberg, Another round David Fincher, Deficiency, Lee Isaac Chung, Threats Emerald fennell, Promising young woman
Winners: Jaime Baksht, Nicolas Becker, Philip Bladh, Carlos Cortés and Michelle Couttolenc, Sound of metal
Other nominees: Greyhound, Mank, World News, Soul
Best Live Action Short Film
Winners: Travon Free and Martin Desmond Roe, Two distant strangers
Other nominees: The mail room, the present, feel yourself through, white eye
Best animated short film
Winners: Michael Govier and Will McCormack, When something happens i love you
Other nominees: Genius Loci, Opera, Yes – People
Best animated feature film
Other nominees: Next, Across the Moon, A Shaun the Sheep Film: Farmageddon, Wolfwalkers
Best Documentary Short Topic
Other nominees: A concert is a conversation, not a split, Hunger Ward, a love song for Latasha
Best documentary feature
Winner: My octopus teacher
Other nominees: Collective, Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution, The Mole Agent, Time
Best visual effects
Other nominees: Love and monsters, the midnight sky, Mulan, the only Ivan
The best supporting actress
Winner: Youn Yuh-jung, Threatening
Other nominees: Maria Bakalova, Borat Follow-up movie film;; Glenn Close, Hillbilly elegy;; Olivia Colman, The father;; Amanda Seyfried, Deficiency
Best production design
Winner: Donald Graham Burt, Jan Pascale, Deficiency
Other nominees: The father, Ma Rainey’s black bottom, news of the world, teaching
Winner: Erik Messerschmidt, Deficiency
Other nominees: Judas and the Black Messiah, World News, Nomad Land, The Chicago Trial 7
Best film editing
Winner: Mikkel EG Nielsen, Sound of metal
Other nominees: The Father, Nomadland, Promising Young Woman, The Chicago Trial 7
Best original score
Winners: Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross and Jon Batiste, soul
Other nominees: Da 5 Bloods, Mank, Minari, News of the World
Best original song
Winner: “Fight for You” by Judas and the black messiah
Other nominees: “Hear my voice” of The Chicago 7 trial, “Husavik” by Eurovision Song Contest, “Io Si (seen)” by The life before us “Speak now” of One night in Miami
Winner: Nomad land
Other nominees: The Father, Judas and the Black Messiah, Mank, Minari, Promising Young Woman, Sound of Metal, The Trial of Chicago 7
Winner: Frances McDormand, Nomad land
Other nominees: Viola Davis, Ma Rainey’s black bottom;; Andra Day, The United States versus Billie Holiday;; Vanessa Kirby, Pieces of a woman;; Carey Mulligan, Promising young woman
Winner: Anthony Hopkins, The father
Other nominees: Ahmed Rice, The sound of metal; Chadwick Boseman, Ma Rainey’s black bottom; Gary Oldman, Deficiency;; Steven Yeun, Threatening
Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award
Winner: Tyler Perry, for philanthropic work and to combat economic insecurity and homelessness
Winner: The Motion Picture & Television Fund, for providing support services to film industry employees during the COVID-19 pandemic