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Oscars 2024: 'Oppenheimer' wins best picture, Emma Stone takes best actress

The Oscar for best picture went to <em>Oppenheimer </em>at the 96th Annual Academy Awards.
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The Oscar for best picture went to Oppenheimer at the 96th Annual Academy Awards.

Updated March 10, 2024 at 11:49 PM ET

A night of 'Oppenheimer,' quiet protest, and Ryan Gosling just being Ken — here are our takeaways from the Oscars

Christopher Nolan, winner of the best directing award and the best picture award for<em> Oppenheimer</em> poses in the press room during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.
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Christopher Nolan, winner of the best directing award and the best picture award for Oppenheimer poses in the press room during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.

The 2024 Oscars weren't long on surprises. Oppenheimer won best picture, a tight race between Lily Gladstone and Emma Stone for best actress went to Stone in the end, and the Billie Eilish Barbie song beat out the Ryan Gosling Barbie song.

Most of the takeaways from the evening are modest rather than revolutionary, suitably reassuring for a year when Hollywood saw some high-earning movies that were reviewed well, too.You can read all of our takeaways here.

Linda Holmes, 11:49 P.M. ET

A surprising triumph at this year's Oscars

This year's Oscars broadcast managed an amazing and incredibly difficult feat: It served as both an entertaining party for a film industry that produced amazing work in an impossibly challenging year while leaving room enough to make serious points about art, politics, and society that you hope entertainment's biggest awards ceremony might deliver.

As a TV show, the ceremony was surprisingly nimble and entertaining at points, led by host Jimmy Kimmel who expertly navigated the space between smart-alecky ribbing of Hollywood and a knowing acceptance of its rituals. Besides offering a monologue filled with gentle roasting, he found time to make fun of himself, reading a review he implied was written by Donald Trump on social media which asked "Has there ever been a worse host than Jimmy Kimmel at the Oscars." Kimmel drew applause when he retorted," Isn't it past your jail time?"

Kimmel also led a patented, prank-ish moment, in a nod to the infamous incident when a streaker ran nude across the Oscars stage in 1974. This time, the host got wrestler-turned-actor John Cena to show up nearly naked—his, um, naughty bits obscured by a large envelope—pretending to chicken out on streaking himself while presenting the best costume design award. (Later, Kimmel draped him in a flowing gown, adding to the joke.)

But some of the funniest moments onstage had nothing to do with Kimmel. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito, who both played villains in Batman movies, had fun pretending to still have beef with star Michael Keaton sitting in the audience. "We'll see you at the Governor's Ball!" yelled DeVito, as Keaton, in on the joke, leveled an icy stare.Other winning bits featured Barbie star Ryan Gosling and Oppenheimer co-star Emily Blunt fake feuding over which film was better and Barbie co-star Kate McKinnon joking with director Stephen Spielberg implying she had accidentally sent him "tasteful nudes." Gosling also triumphed in a dazzling performance of the song "I'm Just Ken," which was overstuffed as a Simpsons parody and anchored by his surprisingly powerful vocals (it didn't hurt that rock guitar god Slash and Mark Ronson were onstage with him).

There were some disappointing moments. As cool as it was to have five past winners give speeches honoring the nominees for each of the major acting awards, the speeches could go on for a bit (leading Kimmel to jokingly ask if anyone else in the crowd wanted to come onstage and give a random speech before the show ended).

And as amazing as Emma Stone's performance was in Poor Things, it was unfortunate that her best actress win meant Lily Gladstone wouldn't make history as the first Native American woman to win a major acting Oscar (she is, however, the first Native American woman to be nominated, as well). It was a rare hiccup in a night that saw non-white winners like Da'Vine Joy Randolph and Cord Jefferson take home major awards and international efforts like The Zone of Interest and Godzilla Minus One score important honors as well.

Loads of touches throughout the night seemed aimed at addressing past criticisms of the show. The In Memoriam segment, which often faces criticism for leaving out notable people who have passed away, utilized lots of visual elements to squeeze in as many names as possible, encouraging viewers to visit the Oscars website for even more information.

When politics was referenced during the show, it came in short, heartfelt speeches from winners like 20 Days in Mariupol director Mstyslav Chernov, who accepted the award for best documentary feature for his film about the war in Ukraine by noting it was the first Oscar in Ukrainian history.

"I wish I never made this film," he added. "I cannot change the past, but...we all together, some of the most talented people in the world, we can make sure the story is set straight. Cinema forms memories. And memories form history."

Watching German actress Sandra Huller's eyes fill with tears as she watched the Holocaust film The Zone of Interest win its first award, I was struck by how some Germans have faced their terrible history and used it to educate the world, rather than run from it and deny it. Moments like these, scattered through the Oscars ceremony like the red pins some wore to call for a cease-fire in Gaza, felt like a much more effective way to highlight how art speaks to the moment without heavy-handed diatribes.

Given how much this year's Oscars was attempting to pull off — including ending more or less on time — the broadcast felt like a surprising triumph for an industry trying hard to convince the world it still offers spectacle, creative achievement, and glamor in a world filled with streaming services and superhero stories.

ERIC DEGGANS, 11:19 P.M. ET

Oppenheimer wins Oscar for best picture

Oppenheimer opened last year as part of a pitched battle of the titans, but on Oscar night, it reigned supreme. Capping off a night in which it won seven awards, Christopher Nolan's historical drama about the development of the atomic bomb won best picture. It beat out not only its box-office frenemy Barbie but a strong field of contenders, including Alexander Payne's The Holdovers, Martin Scorsese's Killers of the Flower Moon (which won nothing all night), and Yorgos Lanthimos' experimental Poor Things. More here.

Linda Holmes, 10:28 P.M. ET

Emma Stone wins best actress for Poor Things

Emma Stone accepts the best actress in a leading role award for <em>Poor Things</em> during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.
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Emma Stone accepts the best actress in a leading role award for Poor Things during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.

Leading up to tonight's ceremony, two actresses were widely considered to be the front-runners for best actress in a leading role: Emma Stone, for Poor Things, and Lily Gladstone, for Killers of the Flower Moon. In what many will consider an upset, Stone beat Gladstone for the Oscar tonight.

Stone seemed shocked herself, accepting the award in a gown she noted had ripped earlier in the night. In her speech, she shared Poor Things' director Yorgos Lanthimos's advice to calm her nerves: 'Please take yourself out of it.'

"And he's right," she continued, "it's not about me, it's about a team that came together to make something better than the sum of its parts." She thanked Lanthimos for creating the character she plays in the film. "Thank you for the gift of a lifetime in Bella Baxter."

Throughout awards season, both Stone and Gladstone received recognition. Stone's Poor Things performance won her a BAFTA and the Golden Globe for lead actress in a motion picture - comedy. Gladstone's Killers of the Flower Moon performance won her a SAG award and the Golden Globe for lead actress in a motion picture - drama.

Glen Weldon, 10:38 P.M. ET

Oppenheimer wins Christopher Nolan his first Oscar for directing

Christopher Nolan accepts the best directing award for <em>Oppenheimer </em>at the 96th Annual Academy Awards.
Kevin Winter / Getty Images
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Christopher Nolan accepts the best directing award for Oppenheimer at the 96th Annual Academy Awards.

Christopher Nolan took home the Oscar for best director for the sprawling biopic Oppenheimer; it was Nolan's second nomination for directing and first win in the category. (He was nominated for directing 2017's Dunkirk, but lost to Guillermo Del Toro for The Shape of Water.)

In his acceptance speech, Nolan thanked the cast and crew of the film, as well as his wife Emma Thomas, "producer of all of our films and all of our children."

He went on to note that the medium of film is 100 years old, and while we don't know where it will take us, "To know that you think I'm a meaningful part of it means the world to me. " More here.

Glen Weldon, 10:17 P.M. ET

Cillian Murphy wins best actor in a big night for Oppenheimer

Cillian Murphy accepts the award for best actor in a leading role for <em>Oppenheimer.</em>
Patrick T. Fallon / AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
Cillian Murphy accepts the award for best actor in a leading role for Oppenheimer.

In the run-up to this year's Oscars, most of the biggest categories have been reasonably easy to predict: Da'Vine Joy Randolph in The Holdovers was a mortal lock, for example. But best actor seemed to go down to the wire, as Randolph's castmate Paul Giamatti seemed to be giving Oppenheimer's Cillian Murphy a serious fight.

In the end, Murphy took the prize for his haunting — and deeply haunted — performance as J. Robert Oppenheimer. Thanking director Christopher Nolan (who won best director mere moments later), as well as his cast, crew, team and family, Murphy closed his speech by thanking "the peacemakers everywhere," who continue to toil in the post-nuclear world Oppenheimer helped build.

Stephen Thompson, 10:10 P.M. ET

Oppenheimer wins for best score

Swedish composer Ludwig Göransson won the Academy Award for best score for his work in Oppenheimer. It's Göransson's second Oscar – he won for the score to Black Panther in 2019, and his song "Lift Me Up," from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, was nominated for best song last year.

The Oppenheimer score has already won him a Golden Globe and a Grammy award. He also has 2 Emmy awards under his belt – one for his work on each of the first two seasons of The Mandalorian. He is 39.

Glen Weldon, 10:01 P.M. ET

Wes Anderson wins 1st Oscar with Roald Dahl adapted short

Some might think it unfair that a well-known filmmaker who has been nominated for an Oscar eight times even enters the historically underdog category. Then again, he's been nominated eight times. He finally won with The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar for best live-action short film, a story about a man who seeks the skills of a guru to cheat his way to riches.

Many had been banking on The After's portrayal of grief or the post-Roe drama Red, White and Blue.

Emma Bowman, 10:00 P.M. ET

As expected, 'Barbie' wins best original song — for Billie Eilish, it turns out

Barbie contains two of this year's five nominees for best original song — but, if oddsmakers were to be believed, it possessed a roughly 100 percent chance of winning. Now, Billie Eilish and her brother Finneas O'Connell have won in the category for the second time in three years, for "What Was I Made For?"

Leaving the splashier "I'm Just Ken" in the dust, "What Was I Made For?" has proven to be a sizable radio hit for Eilish and O'Connell, who won in 2022 for their James Bond theme No Time to Die. The two thanked Barbie director Greta Gerwig, their parents and friends, Eilish's best friend "for playing Barbies with me growing up," their dance and choir teachers (including one about whom Eilish said, "You didn't like me, but you were good at your job") and, of course, the Academy.

Stephen Thompson, 9:59 P.M. ET

Ryan Gosling absolutely crushes 'I'm Just Ken' in a classic Oscars moment

Ryan Gosling performs "I'm Just Ken" from <em>Barbie</em> during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.
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AFP via Getty Images
Ryan Gosling performs "I'm Just Ken" from Barbie during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.

It's easy to forget that, in addition to being an Oscar-nominated actor, Ryan Gosling is a terrific singer, dancer and all-around showman. Remember La La Land? Remember his band Dead Man's Bones? The guy was always more than up to the task of dragging the Oscars out of their stupor and absolutely crushing "I'm Just Ken," which provides one of the signature moments in Barbie.

But still, this was an absolute classic of an Oscars performance. Opening the song from his seat in the crowd — in front of a snickering Billie Eilish and behind a grinning Margot Robbie — Gosling absolutely poured himself into this performance, which surveyed the song's many phases (inspirational anthem! dream ballet!) with the aid of copious dancers, songwriter/producer Mark Ronson on bass, several Kens (Simu Liu! Kingsley Ben-Adir!) and even Slash on guitar.

We could feel the Kenergy throughout, and that's before the song turned into a massive karaoke spectacular before our eyes.

Stephen Thompson, 9:48 P.M. ET

The Zone of Interest takes best sound Oscar, surprising oddsmakers

Jonathan Glazer's film The Zone of Interest won the Academy Award for best sound, further sapping the momentum of Oppenheimer, a film that some expected would sweep in most or all of the categories in which it was nominated.

Sound editors Tarn Willers and Johnnie Burn accepted the award for the film about a family of Nazis living next to the Auschwitz concentration camp, thanking the Academy "for listening to our film."

Director Jonathan Glazer never visually depicts the horrors occurring just over the garden wall; that work is left to the film's haunting soundscape.

Glen Weldon, 9:44 P.M. ET

Cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema gives Oppenheimer win No. 3 of the night

Hoyte van Hoytema, who is known for his work on a bunch of other visually sweeping films (Her, Interstellar, Dunkirk, Nope, Tenet) collaborated with Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan on his past few films. Close-ups of faces drive much of Oppenheimer, which is the first to shoot black-and-white scenes on a large-format IMAX film camera.

"Historically, we've been putting cameras on planes or on boats and did a lot of kind of impossible things,"he told NPR. "But to really go back to the base and to sort of strip it down and to look at the human face again and three hours long people talking – you know, faces.

Nolan has called him "one of the great naturalistic cameramen."

Emma Bowman, 9:33 P.M. ET

The Last Repair Shop gives LA Times its 1st Oscar

Co-directors Ben Proudfoot and Kris Bowers spotlight the work of technicians who've been repairing Los Angeles school district students' musical instruments in a downtown warehouse for decades. Bowers told LAist about how it gave him a full-circle moment: "He was able to meet and highlight the work of Steve Bagmanyan, a technician who tuned the pianos in Bowers' elementary and middle schools. 'I was able to literally thank someone who had a hand in my progress as a musician,'" Bowers says.

Emma Bowman, 9:25 P.M. ET

20 Days in Mariupol wins Ukraine's first-ever Oscar

Filmmaker Mstyslav Chernov accepts the award for best documentary feature film for <em>20 Days in Mariupol</em> during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.
Patrick T. Fallon / AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
Filmmaker Mstyslav Chernov accepts the award for best documentary feature film for 20 Days in Mariupol during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.

Oscar speeches don't often open with the words, "I wish I'd never made this film."

But writer-director Mstyslav Chernov, director of best documentary for 20 Days in Mariupol, still made the most of the moment, as he punctuated his greatest wishes — for Russia to have never invaded Ukraine in the first place, and for those lost in Mariupol to have been spared — with an acknowledgement that his was Ukraine's first-ever Oscar. He reported for weeks from the besieged city, mostly from hospitals and other shelters, as the invasion began. His footage became crucial to international coverage of the war.

He then closed his speech with the words "Slava Ukraini, or "Glory to Ukraine."

Stephen Thompson, 9:20 P.M. ET

Oppenheimer wins best editing

No surprise here. First nomination, first win for Jennifer Lame. When the film editor teamed up with Nolan for the movie, she thought it was going to be a pretty straightforward historical biopic, unlike their previous collaboration, the time-manipulation film, Tenet.

She was wrong: "When Chris started to talk about the importance of editing and how he wanted to blend Oppenheimer's visions with his reality, I realized, 'Right. That's going to be really difficult,' and that part was challenging,"she said in an interview with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' online magazine, A.frame.

Lametold NPR that another challenge in the film was to make dialogue-heavy scenes move like action scenes. "I really wanted to make sure that those scenes that are with [Lewis] Strauss and the Senate aide — and it gets into the weeds of stuff — that certain lines popped," she said.

Women in the "invisible" role of film editing are behind some of Hollywood's most iconic movies. Yet they make up just 14% of best editing nominees across Oscar history, according to a 2023 USC Annenberg study. Lame is the first solo woman to win the category since 2015, when Margaret Sixel took the prize for Mad Max: Fury Road.

Emma Bowman, 9:13 P.M. ET

Godzilla Minus One nabs best visual effects

By our count, there have been 38 Godzilla movies made, including one set to release this month. But it's the first to win a visual effects Oscar. This one, set in post-WWII Japan, gets a visit from the beast when the country is already on its knees.

Emma Bowman, 9:06 P.M. ET

Robert Downey Jr. wins best supporting actor on his own self-effacing terms

Robert Downey Jr. accepts the Oscar for best actor in a supporting role for <em>Oppenheimer.</em>
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Robert Downey Jr. accepts the Oscar for best actor in a supporting role for Oppenheimer.

Robert Downey Jr.'s long and unlikely career has taken him through serious ups and downs, from three Oscar nominations (for Chaplin, Tropic Thunder and now Oppenheimer) and countless Marvel blockbusters to several drug arrests. Upon winning at last, Downey wasn't about to let the moment go by without acknowledging his life's darker moments.

Thanking his wife Susan Downey — whom he jokingly called "my veterinarian" before noting that she "loved me back to life" — Downey acknowledged how difficult it could be to be part of his team over the years. And, of course, he thanked Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan for casting him as the film's ostensible villain, Lewis Strauss: "I needed this job more than it needed me," Downey said. "Chris knew it."

Downey gave Oppenheimer its first win of the night — though almost certainly not the last. And, for those of us who were rooting for Barbie's Ryan Gosling in this category, Gosling will get the last word when he performs "I'm Just Ken" later in the evening.

Stephen Thompson, 9:05 P.M. ET

The Zone of Interest takes best international film, and its director takes on current events

Jonathan Glazer poses in the press room with the Oscar for best international feature film for <em>The Zone of Interest.</em>
Robyn Beck / AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
Jonathan Glazer poses in the press room with the Oscar for best international feature film for The Zone of Interest.

When Jonathan Glazer accepted the Oscar for best international film for The Zone of Interest, his bleak examination of a commandant's family living pleasurably outside Auschwitz, you might have expected a mention of current events – and he offered more than a mention. Glazer specifically tied the film to ongoing violence in Israel and Gaza.

"All our choices were made to reflect and confront us in the present," he said. "Not to say 'look what they did then'; rather, 'look what we do now.' Our film shows where dehumanization leads at its worst." He went on to say, "Right now, we stand here as men who refute their Jewishness and a Holocaust being hijacked by an occupation which has led to conflict for so many innocent people, whether the victims of October the seventh in Israel, or the ongoing attack on Gaza." He went on to ask, "How do we resist?", mentioning the resistance of the young girl in the film who "glows" when you see her on a thermal imaging camera, sneaking food to prisoners – a girl he based on a woman he met while working on the film.

Linda Holmes, 9:03 P.M. ET

Oscars mid-point check-in: How many categories to go?

How's everybody doing? Holding up okay? Timed your pee breaks? I'm headed to the kitchen; need anything?

This year's ceremony is gonna be four hours long, so it's worth checking in on the show's pacing.

There will be 23 Oscars handed out tonight. That means we should be hitting a pace of 5.75 awards per hour. (What's .75 of an Oscar, you ask? Shut up, is the answer.)

They handed out 5 Oscars in the first hour, and 7 in the second. Pretty good! We may all get out of here by 11:00 p.m. ET after all!

Glen Weldon, 8:59 P.M. ET

A modest plea: Bring back the Oscar clips!

Every few years, someone at the Oscars has a terrible idea: "Who needs Oscar clips, anyway?"

That person then elaborates: "Why show the viewing public the nominated performances — a process that takes maybe a minute, if that — when we could have a bunch of presenters drone on about how great they are, in a process that lasts what feels like a thousand years? That's why they have the saying 'Tell, don't show,' right?"

Sunday night's Oscars telecast has thankfully shown a fair number of clips so far, including during the nominations for best original and adapted screenplay. But when they've rolled out best supporting actress (won by Da'Vine Joy Randolph, for The Holdovers) and best supporting actor (won by Robert Downey Jr., for Oppenheimer), Oscars producers made the deeply unwise decision to have a panel of past winners lavishly praise the nominated performances instead of simply showing them to us.

If nothing else, it retroactively takes a bit of the fun out of watching this year's nominated performances and puzzling out which moments would serve as Oscar clips. Maybe next year?

Stephen Thompson, 8:48 P.M. ET

The Osage Tribal Singers give the Oscars a fresh note of celebration

The Osage Singers perform during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.
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The Osage Singers perform during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.

When this year's best original song nominees were announced, the surprise inclusion of "Wahzhazhe (A Song for My People)" portended an exciting opportunity to watch the Osage Tribal Singers perform the song before a wide audience. The celebratory song, written by Scott George, had never even been written down prior to being submitted for nomination.

The Osage Tribal Singers' performance followed clips from Killers of the Flower Moon, which received 10 Oscar nominations this year — including the one for "Wahzhazhe (A Song for My People)."

Stephen Thompson, 8:37 P.M. ET

With a win for costume design, Poor Things locks 3 statuettes

The first film Holly Waddington worked on was Atonement (2007), as assistant to Oscar-nominated costume designer Jacqueline Durran. Waddington just beat Durran – who was up for Barbie – to win best costume design.

She knows the Victorian period from her work on 2016's Lady Macbeth. But this fantastical film following nonconformist Bella Baxter (who has a literal baby brain) forced her to come up with deranged takes on the era's frilly fashions.

Poor Things is up for 11 awards tonight.

Emma Bowman, 8:30 P.M. ET

Poor Things wins for best hair and makeup

Nadia Stacey, Mark Coulier and Josh Weston take home the Oscar after nabbing a BAFTA for their work on the Victorian-era fable. The team's most obvious makeup achievement: The disfigured, Frankensteinian mug of Willem Dafoe's mad scientist character. There was also Emma Stone's long, raven tresses and mustachioed Mark Ruffalo's silly mop of hair. It's Stacey's first win, second nomination. She also worked with Stone's locks for 2021's Cruella.

Emma Bowman, 8:24 P.M. ET

The weird and fantastical worlds of Poor Things honored

Production designers James Price and Shona Heath, with set decoration from: Zsuzsa Mihalek take the best production design Oscar. In what critic Glen Weldon described as a cinematic terrarium, they constructed ambitious and weird depictions of London, Lisbon, Paris and Alexandria.

Emma Bowman, 8:24 P.M. ET

Anatomy of a Fall and American Fiction take home screenplay Oscars

Justine Triet and Arthur Harari took home best original screenplay for their courtroom drama Anatomy of a Fall. During their acceptance speech, they looked back to the origins of their script, which was crafted during the pandemic and while they tended to their two young children.

The original and adapted screenplay categories were especially contentious this year — Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach's Barbie was nominated in the adapted screenplay category on the grounds that it's based on a pre-existing character. This, despite the fact that it was campaigned for in the original screenplay category and the WGA had officially deemed it as such.

Barbie instead faced stiff competition from Oppenheimer, The Zone of Interest, Poor Things, and, the ultimate winner this evening, American Fiction. First time filmmaker Cord Jefferson's screenplay is based on Percival Everett's novel Erasure, a social satire about a Black author who begrudgingly writes a book filled with racial stereotypes and stumbles into a best-seller.

Jefferson took the time during his speech to acknowledge what it took for him to get his relatively smaller passion project — in comparison to Oppenheimer and Barbie — to get made. "I understand that this is a risk averse industry, I get it. But $200 million movies are also a risk, you know, and it doesn't always work out, but you take the risk anyway."

"Instead of making one $200 million movie, try making 20 $10 million movies," he continued, also adding, "..I felt so much joy making this movie and I want other people to experience that joy and they are out there. I promise you the next Martin Scorsese is out there. The next Greta – both Gretas – is out there ... the next Christopher Nolan's out there."

Aisha Harris, 8:17 P.M. ET

Early wins for non-white artists

An hour into the Oscars ceremony and we already have two important wins for non-white artists: Da'Vine Joy Randolph from The Holdovers as best supporting actress and Cord Jefferson from American Fiction for best adapted screenplay. Such wonderful proof of the quality diversity can bring and a welcome change from the days – not long ago – when it took a hashtag like #OscarsSoWhite to get the industry to pay attention.

ERIC DEGGANS, 8:13 P.M. ET

Billie Eilish gives 'What Was I Made For?' the intimate reading it deserves

Finneas O'Connell and Billie Eilish perform during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.
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Finneas O'Connell and Billie Eilish perform during the 96th Annual Academy Awards.

Billie Eilish and Finneas O'Connell won the Oscar for best original song two years ago, for the theme from the James Bond film No Time to Die. Two years later, they opened Sunday night's performances of nominated songs with "What Was I Made For?" from Barbie.

With O'Connell seated at a small piano and Eilish standing by his side, the pair gave the song the slow, soft, intimate reading it requires — and received a thundering ovation in response. The song may be heavily favored to win the pair's second Oscar in three years, but its strongest competitor is still to come Sunday night, when Ryan Gosling performs "I'm Just Ken," also from Barbie.

Stephen Thompson, 8:02 P.M. ET

The Boy and the Heron wins best animated feature Oscar

Best animated short goes to War Is Over! Inspired by the Music of John & Yoko. The alternate WWII reality short is filmmakers Dave Mullins' and Brad Booker's first Oscar.

Twelve-year-old Mahito journeys into an otherworldly realm in <em>The Boy and the Heron.</em>
/ via Studio Ghibli
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via Studio Ghibli
Twelve-year-old Mahito journeys into an otherworldly realm in The Boy and the Heron.

The Boy and the Heron wins best animated feature film. Hayao Miyazaki and Toshio Suzuki weren't present to accept the award. The film is a swan song for 83-year-old Miyazaki, perhaps the world's most famous animator (if you believe his latest retirement announcement is for real this time.) The Studio Ghibli cofounder also made My Neighbor Totoro (1988), Kiki's Delivery Service (1989) and Spirited Away (2001). Read the Fresh Air reviewhere.

Emma Bowman, 8:02 P.M. ET

Jimmy Kimmel cements his status as Hollywood's favorite host

Jimmy Kimmel onstage at the 96th Annual Academy Awards.
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Jimmy Kimmel onstage at the 96th Annual Academy Awards.

Taking the stage for his fourth time as Oscars host, Jimmy Kimmel went right into a cheeky monologue that walked a fine line between gently roasting Hollywood and celebrating all those big stars with their larger egos – some of whom might be experiencing the biggest night in their careers.

Several audience members stood up to applaud Kimmel before he said anything – a sort of testament to the goodwill he's amassed as a host who makes this impossible task look easy. He quipped that, despite starting an hour earlier than usual, "we're already five minutes over and I am not joking." (He wasn't – the pre-show went long).

It wasn't long before Kimmel dove into the controversy of Barbie star Margot Robbie and director Greta Gerwig not getting nominated in the lead actress and director categories. Looking on skeptically while the audience applauded after he mentioned Gerwig's name, the comic cracked "you're the ones who didn't vote for her, by the way. Don't act like you had nothing to do with this."

That's kind of how his monologue unfolded – knowing jabs at stars and Hollywood culture, leavened by bits that were complementary and a little less pointed. Sometimes the humor didn't quite land — like a penis joke about Robert Downey Jr. that felt a little off. But another bit scored when he turned to Robert DeNiro – who was first nominated at the same time as fellow nominee Jodie Foster 48 years ago for their work in Taxi Driver – noting, "in 1976, Jodie Foster was young enough to be Robert DeNiro's daughter. Now she's 20 years too young to be his girlfriend." (what sealed it was Foster mugging for the camera, nodding along with a smile right after the punchline landed.)

Other times, Kimmel summed up the sentiments of film fans everywhere, joking about how long many of the nominated films were: "when I went to see Killers of the Flower Moon, I had my mail forwarded to the theater."

But he really cemented his status as a beloved ambassador for Hollywood by thanking the Teamsters and trade unions for standing alongside the actors and writers during their strikes last year, bringing a group of crew members to take a break from working the show and come on stage amid hearty applause from the audience.

In the end, Kimmel gave a masterclass on how to win over a hardened industry crowd, capping his monologue with an earnest reminder of all the pain and struggle they endured over the last year, while giving them a great reason to celebrate a great slate of films that emerged despite it all.

ERIC DEGGANS, 8:00 P.M. ET

Jimmy Kimmel celebrates the efforts of the SAG and WGA strikes

Toward the end of an opening monologue that was largely a laundry list of low-swinging crowd work including poking fun at Robert Downey, Jr.'s past struggles with drug addiction, Oscars host Jimmy Kimmel took a moment to acknowledge last year's Screen Actors Guild and Writers Guild strikes. "This group of writers, actors and directors, the people who actually make the film said we will not accept a deal," he noted, before taking a swipe at the Directors Guild: "Well, not the directors, you guys folded immediately."

Kimmel went on to crack a joke about artificial intelligence, one of the main grievances driving the strikes, before launching into a more sincere recognition of the picket lines' efforts: "...The reason we were able to make a deal is because of the people who rallied beside us. So before we celebrate ourselves, let's have a very well deserved round of applause for the people who work behind the scenes, the teamsters, the truck drivers, the lighting crew, sound.... All the people who refused to cross the picket line."

Hollywood isn't done organizing yet, however – the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees is currently in negotiations with studios regarding health and pension benefits.

Aisha Harris, 7:46 P.M. ET

Oscars 2024: The complete list of winners

You can follow along with a full list of nominees and winners here.

Isabella Gomez Sarmiento, 7:37 P.M. ET

Da'Vine Joy Randolph wins best supporting actress for The Holdovers

Just a few years after her breakout, scene-stealing role in Dolemite Is My Name – and following more recent excellent turns, including High Fidelity and Only Murders in the Building – Da'Vine Joy Randolph can now call herself an Oscar winner. On Sunday, she took home best supporting actress for her stirring performance in The Holdovers. Co-star Paul Giamatti escorted her to the stage.

"For so long, I've always wanted to be different. And now I realize I just need to be myself. And I thank you for seeing me," she said while accepting the award at Sunday's ceremony. More here.

Aisha Harris, 7:30 P.M. ET

Last-minute menu ideas for your Oscars party

You've got folks coming over to watch the Academy Awards, and you know they're gonna be hungry for glitz, glamor, gowns, strained presenter banter, speeches that thank the Gersh Agency, and light apps.

There's still time. Serve them these Oscar-themed recipes. Note: Several of these dishes directly involve your guests in their preparation. This is to offer them something to do with themselves during the performance of the song from "Flamin' Hot." You're welcome.

Oppenheimer Puree mushrooms, whisk until they're light and fluffy as a cloud; serve with regret.

Poured Things In a blender, prepare a thick, alcoholic slurry of your choice – a frozen marg, a mudslide, what have you. Before pouring into your guest's glass, add bright, dramatically bold food coloring and hand them copies of The Diary of Anaïs Nin and What is to be Done?

The Leftovers Raid the fridge for last night's roast chicken, mashed potatoes and green beans. Make it a real crowd-pleaser by serving it up on your mom's vintage avocado-gold bowls and burnt-umber plates. Pair with a pint of Jim Beam. Your guests will find it all warmly nostalgic.

<a href="https://www.npr.org/2023/06/09/1180748796/past-lives-review-greta-lee-teo-yoo">Pasta Lives</a>: You can only choose one.
Mhari Shaw / NPR
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NPR
Pasta Lives: You can only choose one.

Pasta Lives Prepare a bowl of Hamburger Helper. Prepare a bowl of spicy gochujang noodles. Guests must choose between them.

Killers of the Floured Moon Pie Dredge "The Original Marshmallow Sandwich" in flour, sugar and an egg wash. Deep fry. If at any point in the process you start to feel like it's all taking too long, stick with it – it's worth it.

The Calzone of Interest Prepare pizza dough, fold, stuff pocket with sauerkraut and horrifying complicity. Serve cold.

American Fiction Go to your cupboard. Select an ingredient you know to be delicious and satisfying, but that historically plays a secondary or tertiary role in your favorite recipes. Sesame oil, say. Or red beans. Up to you. Prepare a dish that finally gives it the spotlight it deserves. (Note: In this example, Jeffrey Wright is sesame oil.)

Anatomy of a Daal For this fun, deconstructed treat, lay out some red lentils, vegetable broth, coconut milk, ginger-garlic paste, tomatoes, lime juice and your favorite spices next to a blender.

When your guests ask you what they're supposed to do, tell them you don't want to supply them with easy answers. Whisper, "It's about the ambiguity," and then leave them to sort it out for themselves.

(Shrimp on the) Barbie Find the brightest, pinkest, most stereotypical shrimp you can, and grill 'em up. When your guests ask you for silverware, launch into an inspiring monologue (preferably in a thick Australian accent) about what is, and what is not, a knife.

(If your guests ask who prepared this dish, simply shrug.)

Maestromboli Prepare and spread pizza dough. Top with ham. Lots of ham. Like, don't skimp. More ham than you think strictly necessary. A truly unsettling amount of ham, is the aim. Toss in some corn. Roll, bake and serve.

(Note: This is one thirsty dish; make sure your guests hydrate.)

Glen Weldon, 6:57 P.M. ET

Red carpet looks from the 2024 Oscars

While we wait to see how the Academy voted, click here for some of the most memorable red carpet looks.

Mhari Shaw, 6:54 p.m. ET

Hints for your Oscar Pool ballot

The Oscars come at the tail end of a wave of awards ceremonies, some from groups with memberships that overlap with the Academy's. And when a lot of those groups agree, as has happened this year, that can make the race feel less like a contest than a coronation.

At this point, it would be actively startling if Oppenheimer (which received 13 nominations) does not win the two big prizes — best picture and best director (Christopher Nolan) — likely along with best editing, best score, best cinematography, and possibly best supporting actor (Robert Downey Jr.). Da'Vine Joy Randolph has won every best supporting actress award on the circuit so far for her grieving cafeteria manager in the prep-school dramedy The Holdovers.

Still, a goodly number of other awards appear up for grabs, including:

  • Best actress, where Flower Moon's reserved Lily Gladstone and Poor Things' boisterous Emma Stone appear equally favored.

  • Best actor, where Oppenheimer's Cillian Murphy has been trading wins all awards season with The Holdovers' Paul Giamatti.

  • Best animated feature, where Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse and Hayao Miyazaki's The Boy and the Heron are perhaps a brush stroke apart in popularity.


All of which is to say, there's still plenty of wriggle room on your Oscar pool ballot and reason to watch.

Bob Mondello, 6:50 p.m. ET

Diversity-and-inclusion standards and broadened voting membership

This year's best picture nominees were required to fulfill at least two of four previously optional diversity-and-inclusion standards the Motion Picture Academy instituted after being stung by years of #OscarsSoWhite hashtags and a freshly minted #OscarsSoMale hashtag at its 2020 telecast.

The aim is to expand participation by historically under-represented groups on and off-screen. And while the standards aren't particularly difficult to meet – of the 321 films eligible for Oscars, 265 qualified under the new requirements for Best Picture consideration – there is demonstrable diversity among nominees this year.

This could also be due to the Academy's enlarged and broadened voting membership — almost 11,000 people (up from 6,261 in 2012) from 93 countries — with substantial increases in the percentage of women and persons of color over previous years.

Anecdotal evidence that this might be helping:

  • Four of the year's best picture nominees (Killers of the Flower Moon, Anatomy of a Fall, Past Lives, and Zone of Interest) are at least partly not in English.

  • Seven of the 20 acting nominees are performers of color, with the best actress category already precedent-setting for the presence of Lily Gladstone, the first Native American acting nominee in Oscars history.

  • GLAAD issued a statementpraising the nominations of Rustin's Colman Domingo and Nyad's Jodie Foster as the first time two out LGBTQ actors have been nominated for playing LGBTQ characters (and real-life historical icons).

Bob Mondello, 6:40 p.m. ET

What to expect at the Oscars tonight

An Oscar statue at the Ray Dolby Ballroom in Los Angeles on Jan. 9, 2024.
Robyn Beck / AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
An Oscar statue at the Ray Dolby Ballroom in Los Angeles on Jan. 9, 2024.

Barbenheimer's day is done. Oppenheimer's night is here.

At any rate, that is how awards season has been playing out in the lead-up to Sunday's 96th Annual Academy Awards (on ABC at 7:00 p.m. EDT).

Greta Gerwig's living-doll of a Barbie movie handily won the hot-pink vs. dark-brooding competition at the box office, raking in $1.4 billion as the year's biggest smash while also dominating the year's memes and becoming the most successful woman-directed film in history.

Now though — if the Golden Globes, Critics Choice, BAFTA and Hollywood's guild ceremonies are any indication — it will be Oppenheimer, Christopher Nolan's IMAX portrait of the father of the atom bomb, that'll be raking in the gold statuettes.

Host Jimmy Kimmel will start the evening's festivities at the Dolby Theater an hour earlier than usual, one of several strategies the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is employing to lure TV viewers back to something approaching pre-pandemic (30 million+) levels. (The last three years have averaged less than half that.)

There's reason for optimism: the biggest predictor of viewership has always been whether audiences have seen the nominees, and this year, with two of the most popular films of 2023 in the running for best picture, and with both of them and all their fellow nominees already available on streaming — the telecast is as well positioned as it has been in decades. More here.

Bob Mondello, 6:30 p.m. ET

The 96th Academy Awards will take place Sunday at the Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood.
Kevin Winter / Getty Images
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Getty Images
The 96th Academy Awards will take place Sunday at the Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood.

Roll out the red carpet — Hollywood's biggest night is here!

Jimmy Kimmel returns to host the 96th Academy Awards, which will air an hour earlier this year.

Oppenheimer, Christopher Nolan's three-hour epic about the construction of the atomic bomb during World War II, leads the pack with 13 nominations. Other nominees include Barbie, Poor Things and Killers of the Flower Moon. Want to tune in? Here's everything you need to know.

When are the Oscars this year?

The Oscars will air live from the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, March 10, at 7 p.m. ET, an hour earlier than usual. A 30-minute pre-show hosted by Vanessa Hudgens and Julianne Hough will kick things off on the red carpet at 6:30 p.m. ET.

How do I watch them? What if I don't have cable?

ABC will broadcast the Oscars live. You can find your local ABC station here.

If you don't have cable, you can watch on streaming services such as Hulu Live TV, YouTube TV, AT&T TV and Fubo, most of which offer free trials.

NPR critics and reporters will also be live-blogging during the show.

What should I expect from this year's ceremony?

Jimmy Kimmel will return to host the awards for a fourth time.

In a throwback to the 81st Academy Awards ceremony in 2009, the academy recently confirmed that past winners will introduce nominees and present the awards in the four acting categories. Emily Blunt, Cynthia Erivo, Ryan Gosling, Ariana Grande, Mahershala Ali, Bad Bunny, Michael Keaton, Regina King and Rita Moreno have also been announced as presenters.

Who is performing?

Kenough speculation — Ryan Gosling will sing a rendition of "I'm Just Ken," his breakout number from the Barbie soundtrack, also nominated for best original song. In fact, all five nominated songs in that category will be performed throughout the ceremony, which means Becky G, Jon Batiste, Billie Eilish and Osage singer Scott George will all grace the stage throughout the night.

Who are the favored contenders?

Oppenheimer topped the nominations with 13 nods, including best picture, directing, lead actor, and several technical categories like sound and cinematography. Yorgos Lanthimos' Poor Things and Martin Scorsese's Killers of the Flower Moon follow with 11 and 10 nominations each, respectively.

Lily Gladstone, who is nominated for her role as the real-life Mollie Burkhart in Killers, could become the first Native American to win the Academy Award for best actress in a leading role. For the first time, three of the best picture nominees were directed by women: Anatomy of a Fall (Justine Triet), Barbie (Greta Gerwig) and Past Lives (Celine Song).

See the complete list of nominations here.

Isabella Gomez Sarmiento6:15 p.m ET

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