Oscars: Green Book wins best picture in surprise upset

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Mon, 25 Feb 2019, 7:45PM

Oscars: Green Book wins best picture in surprise upset

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Mon, 25 Feb 2019, 7:45PM

Green Book took out Best Picture in a surprise upset at this year's hostless Oscars, finishing off a smooth, relatively muted ceremony that followed several months of speed bumps and controversy.

The divisive racial drama has been marred with controversy since its release, with the family on which the story is based calling it a "symphony of lies". The film beat out The Favourite, Roma and BlackKklansman among others for the top award, also taking home best original screenplay and best supporting actor.

Viewers noted on Twitter that the lack of host (Kevin Hart dropped out after controversy surrounding historic homophobic tweets) actually made the ceremony more entertaining, with the ceremony able to proceed swiftly, rather than be lengthened by an MC's extended monologues.

Maya Rudolph, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler had the crowd in stitches while presenting the first award. "We are not your hosts, but we're going to stand here a little too long so that the people who get USA Today tomorrow will think that we hosted," said Fey. People asked on social media why the trio weren't hosting the whole ceremony anyway.

Maya Rudolph, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler presenting at the 91st Academy Awards. Photo / AP
Maya Rudolph, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler presenting at the 91st Academy Awards. Photo / AP

The trio mentioned the fact that the Oscars had backtracked on their introduction of a new category for "popular film", which was met with backlash from Hollywood. Later, presenter Tyler Perry thanked the Oscars for also reversing their plan to not televise awards for best cinematography, live action short, film editing and makeup and hairstyling.

While those four awards were broadcast in the end, the ceremony was a speedy affair, with multiple speeches being cut short as proceedings were rushed along.

In the major acting awards, best actress went to Olivia Colman for her critically-acclaimed performance as Queen Anne in The Favourite. It was Colman's first-ever nomination, and the British actress gave easily the best speech of the night, opening the harried, charmingly hilarious spiel with the words: "It's genuinely quite stressful".

Olivia Colman accepting the award for best performance by an actress in a leading role for The Favourite. Photo / AP
Olivia Colman accepting the award for best performance by an actress in a leading role for The Favourite. Photo / AP

Best actor went to Rami Malek for his performance as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody. The controversial biopic was a major winner at the ceremony, surviving recent controversy regarding sexual abuse allegations against its director, Bryan Singer. The film won Oscars for best sound mixing, best sound editing and best editing on top of Malek's acting nod.

Rami Malek wins the Oscar for best actor for his portrayal of Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody. Photo / AP
Rami Malek wins the Oscar for best actor for his portrayal of Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody. Photo / AP

Netflix's major Oscar contender, Roma, was another big winner, taking home best director for Alfonso Cuaron (his second win in this category following 2013's Gravity). Cuaron also won best cinematography and best foreign language film.

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