Oscars 2021 Highlights: Best Moments from The Academy Awards
The 93rd Oscars has certainly been a memorable one, boasting exceptional performances, moving speeches and the first ever socially distanced Oscars awards ceremony. With much anticipation over how this would be achieved, the pre-show set high expectations with talent showcasing exceptional performances and music from favorite Hollywood composers. Regina King kicked off the main ceremony with an epic walk through Union Station and a powerful opening speech, voicing the thoughts of many that "it has been quite a year," but it was time for a bit of celebration.
Chloé Zhao, director of NOMADLAND, made Oscar history as the first woman of color and the first woman of Asian descent to earn Best Director at the Academy Awards. She talked about her experience directing as a "crazy, once-in-a-lifetime journey." She also talked about drawing inspiration from her childhood in China, saying that she believed "people at birth are inherently good" and how she always finds the good in people to inspire her to keep going.
While Lil Rel and Questlove tested Hollywood's top talent on their Oscar history knowledge, the little interlude somehow led us to Oscar nominee Glenn Close doing "Da Butt" dance.
To address the events from the last year and the subject of his film, TWO DISTANT STRANGERS, Travon Free gave a powerful speech about the struggles faced by people of color and police brutality, asking the audience to not "be indifferent to our pain."
Yuh-Jung Youn, the first Korean actor to ever win an Oscar, also gave a memorable speech for winning Supporting Actress for her role in MINARI. She said, "I don't believe in competition" and expressed admiration for the other nominees and modestly joked that her winning was all "down to luck." Another stroke of luck came when she was at long last united with Brad Pitt, refusing to leave the stage without walking on his arm.
In a touching moment, ANOTHER ROUND director Thomas Vinterberg dedicated his Oscar for Best International Feature to his daughter, who died just four days into shooting the film. It was a moment that sat heavy with all those who have recently lost a loved one in this challenging year.
SOUL won best Animated Feature as Pixar's first movie with a Black protagonist. In a touching speech, Pete Doctor stated "This film started as a love letter to jazz. But we had no idea how much jazz would teach us about life."
Tyler Perry received the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, and his speech showed his dedication and commitment to social justice issues and reminded us all of the outstanding effort and contributions made in the last year. He left the audience and watchers at home with a message encouraging a positive way forward: "Meet me in the middle to refuse hate."
The 93rd Oscars were held Sunday, April 25, 2021, at Union Station Los Angeles and the Dolby® Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center® in Hollywood, and international locations via satellite in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.