The Most Anticipated Night in Hollywood

Dylan Gossett, Staff Writer

Leading up to the 91st Academy Awards, movie critics and fans alike predicted and could not wait to see which films and achievements would take home the gold on February 24th, 2019. There was much speculation on who would win each category.

Netflix’s original, Roma, was the clear front runner for multiple categories, including Best Picture. Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper’s duet from A Star is Born, “Shallow”, was geared to take home the award for Best Original Song. Additionally, popular films such as Bohemian Rhapsody, Black Panther, and A Star is Born picked up multiple nominations. Fans could not contain their excitement for Hollywood’s big night. “I was looking forward to seeing Best Picture and Best Animated Feature specifically. I think this is always something interesting to see, whether or not it’s my best picture. Also Best Animated Feature, because I was very impressed by the quality of Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse,” was freshman Dylan Stanley’s most anticipated awards for the night.

However, the Oscars were subject to some altercations. Kevin Hart was originally going to host the show, but tweets of his resurfaced that contained homophobic jokes. Due to this, Hart was removed from the project. Also, the showcase was going to include a new category awarding popular blockbusters that were released this past year. They were also going to broadcast certain awards from the night during commercial breaks rather than take up run time. With his thoughts on the issue, AMC manager and movie buff, Tyler Chance, believes that “the Academy is always trying to stay relevant and trying to increase viewers for their show but sometimes they miss the mark.” Fans were outraged and voiced their disapproval of the two decisions. The Academy removed the Achievement in Popular Film category and would broadcast all the awards. 

There were many surprises throughout the night, from the real winners to wins that fans saw coming a mile away. One predicted win, Rami Malek, who played the legendary Queen lead singer, Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody, achieved the Oscar in for Best Actor in a Leading Role. A big surprise of the night was the best leading actress category. While it was speculation for The Wife’s, Glenn Close, to obtain the award, it ended up going to The Favourite’s Olivia Colman. In the supporting actor/actress scene, the predictions were right on point. Academy Award winner Mahershala Ali took home his second Oscar for a supporting role in Green Book. Regina King excelled to win the award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her performance in, If Beale Street Could Talk and “Shallow” did take home the gold for Best Original Song (to no one’s surprise). Furthermore, the biggest shock of the night was Best Picture. Some predictions leaned towards Roma, some for A Star is Born, and some for The Favourite. The Academy ultimately decided that Peter Farrelly’s Green Book was the best film of the year. Movie critics, fans, and members of the Academy have mixed feelings on the decision, but overall were mostly pleased with all the winners.

Besides the winners, there were multiple highlights throughout the Awards show. One of the most notable changes to the Oscars this year was the disappearance of a host due to the removal of Kevin Hart and no others wanting the position. Although there was no host, the show was actually extremely successful without the opening monologue and passing time in between presenters. Comedians and actors/actresses alike such as Keegan Michael Key, Amy Poehler, and Melissa McCarthy successfully entertained the audience and cracked some jokes while presenting the winners. There were many achievements throughout the night. Legendary director Spike Lee won his first Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for his film, BlacKkKlansman. Additionally, Ruth E. Carter, a costume designer, and production designer, Hannah Beachler, who both worked on Black Panther, became the first African American women to win in their categories.

Arguably the biggest achievement during the Academy Awards was the highly anticipated performance of “Shallow” from Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper. The performance blew audiences away and the duet’s chemistry while singing was intense and led to a passionate and superb section of the Oscars. Carterville High School’s English teacher, Leslie Dawson, commented, “It’s going to be hard to create a song like that again with that much chemistry and passion. I think that was very significant to make the song as amazing as it was.” The final highlight was Olivia Coleman’s acceptance speech for her award in the leading actress category for The Favourite. Her speech was both humble and genuine, being in complete shock of her win. She recognized her idol and competitor in the category, Glenn Close, while showing amazement and wonder for the Academy’s decision.

Overall, the 2019 Oscars was full of surprises, entertainment, and a lively group of the Academy to create an unforgettable award show.