Chris Rock hosts
After a montage of major films from the past year, Chris Rock opened the 88th annual Academy Awards with his monologue. Audiences expected him to address the racial controversy surrounding the show, and he wasted no time, saying, "Man, I counted at least 15 black people on that montage. I’m here at the Academy Awards, otherwise known as the White People’s Choice Awards." He dedicated his time on stage to talk about racism and sexism, taking jabs at the film industry with his sharp-witted comedy.
A platform for change
With millions of people watching, some Oscar winners chose to use their moments on stage to address societal issues. Adam McKay, who won alongside Charles Randolph for Best Adapted Screenplay, urged US voters to choose candidates who do not support big money, big banks, and the oil industry. Joe Biden introduced Lady Gaga with a speech about sexual assault, and a promotion for itsonus.org. Gaga shared the stage with 50 sexual assault victims during her performance of the Oscar nominated song 'Til it Happens to You.' Leonardo DiCaprio also used the remaining minute of his Best Actor winning speech to talk about climate change, urging viewers to make a change for this generation and those to come.
The big winners
Over the past 12 years, Leonardo DiCaprio has been nominated 6 times, but it was not until last night that he won his first Oscar. Brie Larson took home the win for Best Actress for her performance in "Room." Alejandro González Iñárritu won Best Director for the second year in a row. "Bridge of Spies," "Mad Max: Fury Road," "The Revenant," "Room," "Brooklyn," "The Martian," and "The Big Short" were among the nominees for Best Picture, but "Spotlight" took home the big win of the evening.
The snubs & surprises
Though predictions can be made about the Oscar winners, there are bound to be a few surprises. Perhaps the most notable was Sylvester's Stalone loss to Mark Rylance for Best Supporting Actor. Best Original Song went to 'Writing's on the Wall,' despite the many predictions for ''Til it Happens to You.' The Best Picture win also came as a bit of a shock. Though "Spotlight" faced a lot of Oscar buzz, "The Big Short" and "The Revenant" were among the top contenders as well.
10 million & counting
#Oscars was the worldwide trending topic on Twitter Sunday evening, clocking in with over 10 million tweets. Viewers gave their own commentary, shared gifs of Leo in anticipation and celebration, and retweeted their favorites. If you missed any of the action, check out some of the highlights below.
Chris Rock’s opening monologue:
— Chris Geidner (@chrisgeidner) February 29, 2016
Chris Rock is brilliant. That was outrageously well done. And hysterical. And necessary.
— Jenna Mourey/Marbles (@Jenna_Marbles) February 29, 2016
The Oscars are today! You know, the awards show where Leonardo DiCaprio is "overdue" but black people can "wait till next year."
— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) February 28, 2016
Lady Gaga performance of ‘’Til it Happens to You’:
thank u @ladygaga and VP @JoeBiden for bringing attention to sexual assault at the oscars. it hit very close to my heart for obvious reasons
— kesha (@KeshaRose) February 29, 2016
Leo’s big win:
Leo takes the best actor prize, uses speech to make plea for action to combat climate change #Oscars
— Susan Stumme (@sstummeafp) February 29, 2016
Thank you to the Academy and the incredible cast & crew of #TheRevenant. #Oscars
— Leonardo DiCaprio (@LeoDiCaprio) February 29, 2016
Spotlight wins Best Picture:
— Larry King (@kingsthings) February 29, 2016
Congrats to @SachaPfeiffer@PostBaron@MikeRezendes@MattAtMIT@WalterVRobinson who showed the world why investigative journalism matters
— Spotlight Team (@GlobeSpotlight) February 29, 2016
Click here for a full list winners at the 88th Academy Awards.