The 85th annual Oscars were full of surprises.
From Christoph Waltz’s stunning victory in the Best Supporting Actor category to Spielberg’s ‘Lincoln’ being largely left out; this year’s Academy Awards celebration surprised, entertained, and Academy voters certainly showed their support for one ‘snubbed’ film director.
Host Seth MacFarlane was a game emcee, as well. His ‘bad-boy’ persona and slightly askew sense of humor were ever present and kept a fun edge to the tone of the show. The early sequence with William Shatner was a little clunky (Bill was either very tired or started celebrating early on), but MacFarlane seemed to find his own rhythm pretty quickly.
The first prestigious award of the night, for Actor in a Supporting Role, was given to an obviously stunned and gracious Christoph Waltz for his performance in ‘Django Unchained.’ Beating out the likes of Tommy Lee Jones and Robert De Niro was a truly pleasant surprise and well deserved for Waltz’s fantastic performance in that film. This was Waltz’s second Oscar, as he won previously for ‘Inglourious Basterds’ for Best Supporting Actor as well.
Beginning with it’s win for Achievement in Cinematography, Ang Lee’s ‘Life of Pi’ went on to win four Academy Awards including: Visual Effects, Original Score, and a Best Director Oscar for Ang Lee. Lee’s acceptance speech for Achievement in Directing was both grateful, funny, and moving.
In fact, sincerity and gratitude were very much on display as many of the night’s winners gave heartfelt thank you’s that seemed as if they were completely caught off guard. ‘Argo’ screenwriter Chris Terrio and his director Ben Affleck (accepting as a producer later in the evening for the film’s Best Picture win) were simply beside themselves in expressing their sincere appreciation to the Academy and their peers during their moments of glory.
‘Argo’ winning as Best Picture was a redemption for director Ben Affleck. Affleck was left off of Academy ballots for consideration for Achievement in Directing (Best Director.) Affleck was also one of the producers on ‘Argo’, which brought him onstage along with co-producers Grant Heslov and George Clooney at the end of the evening. His speech was full of an excited graciousness and near-manic expression of appreciation for the Academy itself and all persons involved with the film. It was charmingly obvious that Affleck truly loved the film that he made, which also struck a chord with both audiences and critics alike this year.
Other than Daniel Day-Lewis’ victory in the Best Actor in a Leading Role category, Steven Spielberg’s ‘Lincoln’ was largely shut out of the major awards. Spielberg’s historical drama was favored to win: Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Director by many oddsmakers.
Daniel Day-Lewis was charming as well, as he thanked presenter Meryl Streep for switching roles with him…implying that she was Spielberg’s first choice to play Abraham Lincoln. Day-Lewis is the first actor to have won Best Actor on three occasions.
Other wins for major awards went to Anne Hathaway- Best Supporting Actress, Jennifer Lawrence- Best Actress, Quentin Tarantino- Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen, Adele- Best Original Song, ‘Amour’ – Best Foreign Language Film, ‘Brave’ – Best Animated Feature.
To see a complete list of all of the Academy Award winners, click here.