Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Bong, Brad, bad ‘Cats’: Best Oscars moments




Bong, Brad, bad ‘Cats’: Best Oscars moments

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
South Korean film director Bong Joon Ho poses with his engraved awards as he attends the 92nd Oscars Governors Ball at the Hollywood & Highland Center in Hollywood, California on Sunday. AFP

Bong, Brad, bad ‘Cats’: Best Oscars moments

The Oscars ended with a bang on Sunday, as South Korean movie Parasite became the first non-English-language film to scoop top honors on Hollywood’s biggest night.

The wide-ranging, three-and-a-half hour show had plenty of memorable moments in the build-up to the awarding of the top prize.

Here are some key takeaways:

Bong speaks . . . again

Parasite director Bong Joon-ho had sensibly prepared a few winning comments – but by his fourth trip to the stage, he was scrambling for words.

Having thanked his wife and cast upon winning for best original screenplay, Bong collected the prize for best international feature film with a sentiment from the heart: “I’m ready to drink tonight. Until next morning. Thank you.”

But he was back on stage moments later having been named best director, telling the jubilant room of A-list fans: “I thought I was done for the day and was ready to relax. Thank you so much.”

“If the Academy allows, I would like to get a Texas chainsaw, split the Oscar trophy into five and share it with all of you,” he told his fellow nominees.

By the time he rose to collect the award for best picture, a speechless Bong left the talking to his producers.

“It’s [an] unbelievable night, it’s very hard to believe,” he said backstage.

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Brie Larson, Sigourney Weaver, and Gal Gadot speak onstage during the 92nd Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on Sunday in Hollywood, California. GETTY IMAGES/AFP

Women’s ‘fight club’

In a year that saw female directors snubbed, the big question was – who would speak out about gender equality?

The answer turned out to be: almost everyone.

Past Oscar winner Natalie Portman donned a Dior cape with names of women left out stitched into it, saying it was her “subtle way” of responding to the omissions.

In her opening musical number, Janelle Monae praised “all the women who directed phenomenal films”.

Alien star Sigourney Weaver quipped on stage that she and female superheroes Brie Larson (Captain Marvel) and Gal Gadot (Wonder Women) were starting a “fight club”.

“Men are all invited, but no shirts allowed,” Gadot joked.

“And the loser gets to answer questions from journalists about how it feels to be a woman in Hollywood,” she added.

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Brad Pitt accepts the Actor in a Supporting Role award for Once Upon a Time . . . in Hollywood onstage during the 92nd Annual Academy Awards on Sunday. AFP

Pitt does politics

Brad Pitt has won multiple awards for Once Upon a Time . . . in Hollywood, and earned a reputation for delivering the season’s wittiest, most entertaining speeches.

Following his Oscars win, the Hollywood heartthrob struck a more serious, political note, slamming US President Donald Trump’s recent impeachment trial.

Backstage, Pitt expanded on the theme, telling journalists: “When gamesmanship trumps doing the right thing, it’s a sad day and I don’t think we should let it slide.”

Asked about his earlier wisecracks at other galas, including jokes about his Tinder profile, Pitt added: “I have some really funny friends that help me with some laughs.”

Kobe tributes

Expected tributes to Oscar-winning basketball star Kobe Bryant, who was killed in a helicopter crash two weeks ago, were surprisingly understated.

The Lakers icon was the first entry in the traditional “in memoriam” video of those Hollywood has lost this year.

But he drew an homage from veteran director Spike Lee, who arrived in a purple jacket with lapels bearing Bryant’s jersey number – 24.

And Matthew A Cherry, collecting his award for best animated short film, dedicated his win to Bryant, saying: “May we all have a second act as great as his was.”

Down syndrome first

Another moment of Oscars history was made when Zack Gottsagen, of the indie hit The Peanut Butter Falcon, appeared on stage alongside co-star Shia LaBeouf to hand out the best live-action short award.

Gottsagen became the first Oscars presenter with Down syndrome, slightly hesitating over his lines before being gently encouraged by LaBeouf.

“Shia was offered to present an Oscar. He said he would do it if he can share that moment with his beloved co-star Zach Gottsagen who we all adore,” tweeted Alma Har’el, who directed LaBeouf in Honey Boy.

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
James Corden (left) and Rebel Wilson speak onstage during the 92nd Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on Sunday in Hollywood, California. AFP

‘Cats’ stars get the joke

One day after Cats scooped the most nominations for the Razzies – Hollywood’s annual celebration of its most terrible movies – the flop’s own stars took to the stage dressed in feline suits.

The film – an adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical – used computer-generated effects to morph its all-star cast into deeply unnerving half-human, half-cat hybrids.

“As cast members of the motion picture ‘Cats,’” began Rebel Wilson.

“Nobody more than us understands the importance of . . .” added James Corden.

“Good visual effects,” they concluded in union, before batting playfully at the microphone stand.

MOST VIEWED

  • Would you like fries with that? US burger chain makes Phnom Penh debut

    California-based The Habit Burger Grill restaurant chain is all set to serve up a delicious array of charbroiled burgers and sides at its newest international location in the centre of Phnom Penh. The Habit is “renowned for its award-winning Charburgers grilled over an open flame,

  • Banteay Meanchey flood victims receive aid

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday provided aid to more than 10,000 families affected by flooding in Banteay Meanchey province’s Mongkol Borei district and offered his condolences to the 18 victims who drowned in the province over the past week. He said flooding had occured in

  • Angkor provides ‘valuable’ water storage

    The Apsara National Authority (ANA) has stored millions of cubic metres of water at reservoirs in the Angkor area after Cambodia experienced a series of rainstorms over the last few days. The storing of the water, besides serving temple conservation, will also be used to

  • PM urges caution as Polish man tests positive for Covid

    The Ministry of Health on Wednesday reported that a 47-year-old Polish man tested positive for Covid-19 after arriving in Cambodia on Monday. There are a total of six Covid-19 patients currently in the country, all of whom are being treated at the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital

  • Banteay Meanchey floods kill one more as death toll reaches 15

    As floodwaters start to recede in Pursat, Battambang and Pailin provinces and Phnom Penh, Banteay Meanchey continues to bear the brunt as one more person was killed on Monday, bringing the total number of flood-related deaths to 15 in the province this month. Banteay Meanchey provincial

  • Serving coffee with a side of robots

    The eye-catching glass building surrounded by greenery at the intersection of Streets 371 and 2002 in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district is more than just another coffee shop where you can while away a few hours. UrHobby House cafe is filled with robots and characters from