Academy Awards: Parasite Surprises wins Four Oscars; 1917 Takes Three; The Irishman Snubbed

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The 92nd Academy Awards one day later, are still generating global buzz after the historic win for Korean director Bong Joon Ho's film Parasite, but also for the snub of Director Martin Scorsese's The Irishman.

Parasite, which took Best Picture, Director, Original Screenplay and Best International Film and many have said, if its cast had been nominated the film would have added talent gold to the Oscar haul.

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The Academy voters also stunned the world as the hype leading into Hollywood's biggest night had been a three-way tie with Martin Scorsese's The Irishman, Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and Sam Mendes' 1917. The edge had gone to Tarantino and Mendes, both of whom had gained momentum with Golden Globe wins and additional BAFTA wins for Mendes. Bong Joon had also gained momentum coming into the final stretch with two BAFTA wins and he turned that into a gold rush.

The Academy was not as accommodating as those involved with Martin Scorsese's The Irishman would have hoped. The three-hour drama brought together this generation's most gifted and lauded talents and used a technical advancement that de-aged them. Entering the night with ten nominations the historic film ended the evening empty handed. Scorsese is in good company as prolific director Steve Spielberg received 11 nominations for The Color Purple in 1986 and also went home empty handed.

This isn't the place for the analysis of how's and why's, those who are closer to the pulse can spend the next couple of months and then the 2021 awards season explaining the reason Scorsese walked away empty handed.

Essentially, it is simple mathematics. With so many quality films divided by the members of the academy, it was easier to not enter the fray and risk and vote for Parasite, which is a very good film and highlights a current trend in the industry, with the right persona, a good con, fake credentials the doorway is open. 

Parasite was such a surprising film and seeing Bong Joon Ho's reaction after each win was priceless. His genuine enthusiasm and always gracious responses thanking the other nominees during the Onstage Speech for Best Directing, he said, "After winning Best International Feature, I thought I was done for the day and was ready to relax. Thank you so much. When I was young and studying cinema, there was a saying that I carved deep into my heart, which is "the most personal is the most creative." [In English] That quote was from our great Martin Scorsese. [Via translator:] When I was in school, I studied Martin Scorsese's films. Just to be nominated was a huge honor; I never thought I would win. When people in the U.S. were not familiar with my film, Quentin always put my films on his list. He is here, thank you so much. [In English:] Quentin, I love you. [Via translator:] And Todd and Sam, great directors that I admire. 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. [In English:] Thank you, I will drink until next morning."

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Having the opportunity to provide live coverage as credentialed media in the Winner's Room, the night was nothing short of surprising. Wild cheers, eruptions of applause and a standing ovation for Bong Joon Ho and his team who gave a backstage interview.

Nearly all the winners provided backstage interviews. They were fresh on the high of winning and while some were composed others were just flying. It was nice to see the talent, genuinely praising those who provided inspiration, just living the moment.

The Talent Awards

The four top acting awards followed the seasons momentum.

Renee Zellweger taking Best Actress for her portrayal of the iconic Judy Garland in Judy;

Joaquin Phoenix winning Best Actor for his portrayal of Arthur Fleck in The Joker;

Brad Pitt winning Best Supporting Actor for stunt double Cliff Barnes in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood;

Laura Dern winning Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of divorce lawyer Nora Fanshaw in Marriage Story.

Animation, Documentary and Short Films

Best Animated Feature Film went to "Toy Story 4" by Josh Cooley, Mark Nielsen and Jonas Rivera

Best Animated Short Film went to "Hair Love" by Matthew A. Cherry and Karen Rupert Toliver;

Best Live Action Short Film, "The Neighbors' Window" Marshall Curry;

Best Documentary Feature - "American Factory" Steven Bognar, Julia Reichert and Jeff Reichert;

Best Documentary Short "Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You're a Girl)" Carol Dysinger and Elena Andreicheva


Best Adapted Screenplay - "Jojo Rabbit" Screenplay by Taika Waititi 

Best Original Screenplay - "Parasite" Screenplay by Bong Joon Ho, Han Jin Won; Story by Bong Joon Ho

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Technical Awards

Cinematography, Production Design

Achievement in cinematography - "1917" Roger Deakins

Achievement in production design - "Once upon a Hollywood" Production Design: Barbara Ling; Set Decoration: Nancy Haigh

Costume Design, Hairstyling and Makeup

Achievement in costume design - "Little Women" Jacqueline Durran

Achievement in makeup and hairstyling - "Bombshell" Kazu Hiro, Anne Morgan and Vivian Baker

Original Score, Original Song

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original score) - "Joker" Hildur Guðnadóttir

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original song) - "(I'm Gonna) Love Me Again" from "Rocketman" – Winner Music by Elton John; Lyric by Bernie Taupin

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Film Editing, Sound, Mixing, Visual Effects

Achievement in film editing - "Ford v Ferrari" Michael McCusker and Andrew Buckland

Achievement in sound editing "Ford v Ferrari" Donald Sylvester

Achievement in sound mixing - "1917" Mark Taylor and Stuart Wilson

Achievement in visual effects - "1917" Guillaume Rocheron, Greg Butler and Dominic Tuohy

The 92nd Academy Awards if nothing else proved to be an historic night full of surprises.

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