The annual Academy Awards were handed out to Hollywood's stars and starlets this past Sunday. It was already obvious in advance that the pandemic and the selection of films meant that the viewing figures were not really going to be great. However, even the harshest critic would have been surprised by how poor the ratings for the awards ceremony really were. According to the US broadcaster NBC, a mere 9.85 million viewers watched this year's significantly cut program, which is even less than half of the previous negative record set in 2020.
But now for the exciting part: the winners. The critically praised road movie "Nomadland" by Chloé Zhao won in three categories: Best Picture, Best Director and, with Frances McDormand, also in the Best Actress category. The highlight at the end was certainly the surprising awarding of an Oscar to 83-year-old Anthony Hopkins, who was nominated in the Best Actor in a Leading Role category and came out on top. Almost ironically, Hopkins was not even on site, was not aware of the award ceremony and then only expressed his thoughts on Monday morning via Instagram. In his statement, he announced that at 83 years old he had not expected to receive the award, and at the same time he paid tribute to the late Chadwick Boseman with a few kind words. This is apt, after all, just about everyone had expected another posthumous award for the "Black Panther" actor. As the first Asian and second woman ever, record-breaking director Chloé Zhao accepted the Oscar for Best Director. Not an undeserved award, since Zhao's "Nomadland" is one of the few glimmers of hope in an otherwise film-poor era. Other winners were Pixar's "Soul" in Best Animated Feature Film, "Another Round" in Best International Feature Film, Daniel Kaluuya in Best Supporting Actor and Youn Yuh-Jung in Best Supporting Actress.
Did you watch the Oscars and if so, what are your thoughts on the winners and the ceremony itself? Let us know in the comments!