As we ease into the relief period of the COVID-19 global pandemic, the 93rd Academy Awards was like nothing we’ve ever seen in its history quite yet. Produced by director Steven Soderbergh, with the help of the same epidemiologists that assisted him on his film Contagion (2011), this year’s Oscars Ceremony was intended to be “cinematic,” creating a safe yet entertaining experience that would match no other award event of its kind. Split between the home of the Oscars, the Dolby Theater in Hollywood, and the cinematically grand Los Angeles Union Station in the heart of Downtown LA, the award ceremony was filled with Hollywood’s finest stars and a limited number of guests, keeping within COVID-19 protocols. Despite the challenges of operating such a large event under these circumstances, the Oscars brought us all together to celebrate the incredible people behind the noteworthy films that got us through such an uncertain year.
Helping us kick of the show was director and actress Regina King, who’s directorial debut One Night in Miami was also nominated for three awards.
Here are the winners of the 93rd Academy Awards:
Writing (Original Screenplay) – Emerald Fennel, Promising Young Woman
King started off the award ceremony presenting the Original Screenplay award to Emerald Fennel for her screenplay of Promising Young Woman which was made while she was 7 months pregnant on a 23 day shoot!
Writing (Adapted Screenplay) – Christopher Hampton and Florian Zeller, The Father
Next up, King presented the Adapted Screenplay award to Christopher Hampton who accepted the award from Paris, France, and to his collaborator, Chritopher Hampton, who accepted the award from London, United Kingdom. The Father was Zeller’s first screenplay.
International Feature Film – Another Round (Denmark)
Last year’s winner for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Laura Dern, presented the International Feature Film award to Denmark’s Another Round, directed by Thomas Vinterberg who dedicated the award to his daughter and collaborator who passed away in a tragic car accident while working on the film.
Actor in a Supporting Role – Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah
Next, Dern presented the Actor in a Supporting Role award to Daniel Kaluuya for his role as the chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther party, the important and influential Fred Hampton, in Judas and the Black Messiah, a performance that reminded us all “that you can’t kill freedom.” This was Kaluuya’s first Oscar win.
Make-Up and Hairstyling – Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Presented by fellow nominee Don Cheadle, the Make-Up and Hairstyling award went to Sergio Lopez-Rivera, Mia Neal, and Jamika Wilson for their work in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. This is a historical win for Neal and Wilson as they are the first two black women to ever be nominated for this award in Oscars history.
Costume Design – Ann Roth, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Next, Cheadle presented the Costume Design award to Ann Roth for her work on bringing us into the fashion of the late 1920s in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, landing another win for the Netflix hit film.
Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award – Motion Picture and Television Fund
Presented by actor Bryan Cranston, the Humanitarian award was given to the Motion Picture and Television Fund which has helped individuals and families in the film industry who are in need of housing, health care, and financial assistance. CEO Bob Beitcher accepted the award and dedicated it to the hundreds of people on staff past and present for this incredible organization.
Directing – Chloe Zháo, Nomadland
Multi-Oscar award winner for his film Parasite, Bong Joon-Ho presented the award for Best Directing from the Dolby Theater in Seoul, South Korea to Chloe Zháo for her work in Nomadland. When asked to describe the meaning of “directing,” Zháo wrote that a “director is a jack of all trades and a master of none.” In accepting her award, she shared with us a reminder that we can choose to believe that everyone is born innately good, even when it may not seem like it. Zháo is the first woman of color to ever win this award.
Sound – Nicolas Becker, Carlos Cortes, Philip Bladh, and Maria Carolina-Santana, Sound of Metal
Presented by the nominee for Best Actor in a Leading Role, Riz Ahmed, the award for Sound was given to Nicolas Becker, Carlos Cortes, Philip Bladh, and Maria Carolina-Santana for their work in Sound of Metal, a film which examines our relationship to sound, reminding us that film itself is an audio-visual experience.
Short Film (Live Action) – Travon Free and Martin Desmond Roe, Two Distant Strangers
Next, Ahmed presented the award for Short Film (Live Action) to Travon Free and Martin Desmond Roe for their film Two Distant Strangers that uses a sci-fi narrative to examine the lethal cycles of Black Americans in their encounters with law enforcement.
Short Film (Animated) – Will MicCormack and Michael Govier, If Anything Happens I Love You
Presented by Reese Witherspoon, the award for Best Animated Short went to Will McCormack and Michael Govier for their film If Anything Happens I Love You which focuses on two parents that are navigating how to deal with the loss of their child who was killed in a school shooting.
Animated Feature Film – Pete Docter and Dana Murray, Soul
Next, Witherspoon presented the award for Best Animated Feature Film to Pete Docter and Dana Murray for their film Soul which examines the purpose of life through jazz. The two finished off their acceptance with a special thanks to art and music teachers around everywhere.
Documentary (Short) – Anthony Giacchino and Alice Doyard, Colette
Actress and deaf activist Marlee Matlin presented the award for Documentary (Short) in American Sign Language to winners for Anthony Giacchino and Alice Doyard for their documentary Colette on the trailblazing anti-fascist Colette Marin-Catherine as she visits the concentration camp where her brother was killed by Nazis.
Documentary (Feature) – James Reed and Pippa Ehrlich, My Octopus Teacher
Next, Matlin presented the award for Documentary (Feature) to James Reed and Pippa Ehrlich for their documentary My Octopus Teacher which documents the relationship built between filmmaker Craig Foster and an octopus in a South African kelp forest.
Visual Effects – Andrew Jackson, David Lee, Andrew Lockley, and Scott Fisher, Tenet
Presented by nominee for Actor in a Leading Role, Steven Yeun, the award for visual effects went to Andrew Jackson, David Lee, Andrew Lockley and Scott Fisher for their work in the time travel spy movie Tenet.
Actress in a Supporting Role – Yuh-Jung Youn, Minari
Last year’s winner of the award for Actor in a Supporting Role, Brad Pitt, presented the award for Actress in a Supporting Role to Yuh-Jung Youn for her role as Soonja, the grandmother of the Yi family, in Minari.
Production Design – Donald Graham Burt and Jan Pascale, Mank
Presented by Academy Award winning actress Hale Berry, the award for Production Design went to production designer Donald Graham Burt and set decorator Jan Pascale for their work on Mank, which brought us back to 1930s Hollywood.
Cinematography – Erik Messerschmidt, Mank
Next, Berry presents the Cinematography award to Erik Messerschmidt for his camera work on Mank, securing another win for the black and white film.
Film Editing – Mikke E. G. Nielsen, Sound of Metal
After reading some critical notes on one of his many hit films, Blade Runner, Hollywood legend Harrison Ford presented the Film Editing award to Mikke E. G. Nielsen for his work on Sound of Metal.
Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award – Tyler Perry
Presented by Academy Award winning actress Viola Davis, the second Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award was given to Tyler Perry for his endless care towards others. From buying his neighbors’ groceries to even creating a system to ensure people can maintain making a living safely during a global pandemic, Perry sets an example of refusing hate to all.
Music (Original Score) – Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, and Jon Batiste, Soul
Presented by actress and musician Zendaya, the Music award for Best Orignal Score went to Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, and Jon Batiste for their score for Soul, which was met with a special thanks to the twelve notes.
Music (Original Song) – H.E.R., Demile Emile II, Tiara Thomas, Judas and the Black Messiah
Next for all those films that had that one song that really hit home, Zendaya presented the Music award for Best Original Song to H.E.R., Demile Emile II, and Tiara Thomas for their song “Fight For You” from Judas and the Black Messiah, calling all musicians and filmmakers to collaborate in the pursuit of truth.
Best Picture – Frances McDormand, Peter Spears, Mollye Asher, Dan Janvey and Chloé Zhao, Nomadland
Presented by legendary Academy Award winner Rita Moreno, the award for Best Picture was given to Nomadland, a beautiful film that believes in human kindness through a story that frames the authenticity of such a movie group of beautiful people living on the road.
Actress in a Leading Role – Frances McDormand, Nomadland
Presented by last year’s winner, Rene Zellweger, the award for Best Actress in a Leading Role went to Frances McDormand for her role as Fern, landing another major win for Nomadland.
Actor in a Leading Role:
Presented by last year’s winner Joaquin Phoenix, the award for Best Actor in a Leading Role went to Anthony Hopkins for his role as Anthony, an elderly patriarch confronting his aging state in The Father.
To learn more about the Oscars and the arts and sciences behind the magic of cinema, you can check out the brand new Academy Museum of Motion Pictures which is set to open later this year on September 30th, 2021 in Los Angeles, California on the corner of Fairfax Ave. and Wilshire Blvd.