The Academy Awards or The Oscars (the official title was rebranded as The Oscars in 2013 – changed from The Academy Awards) is an annual American awards ceremony honoring cinematic achievements in the film industry. The various category winners are awarded a copy of a statuette, officially the Academy Award of Merit, that is better known by its nickname Oscar. The awards, first presented in 1929 at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, are overseen by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS).
The awards ceremony was first televised in 1953 and is now seen live in more than 200 countries. The Oscars is also the oldest entertainment awards ceremony; its equivalents, the Emmy Awards for television, the Tony Awards for theatre, and the Grammy Awards for music and recording, are modeled after the Academy Awards. The Academy Awards are widely considered to be the most prestigious cinema awards ceremony in the world.
The 86th Academy Awards ceremony was held on March 2, 2014, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles, later than usual as to not clash with the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. The 87th Academy Awards ceremony was held on February 22, 2015. Historically given during the first quarter of the New Year, the awards honor achievements for cinematic accomplishments for the preceding year.
For example, 12 Years a Slave was awarded Best Picture for 2013, although the Oscar ceremony was conducted in 2014.
Oscars 2015: As it happened
The 22 Most Noteworthy Things Said Backstage At The Oscars
By Sasha Bronner, www. huffingtonpost.com
[赫芬顿邮报（The Huffington Post）是美国当今最具影响力新闻博客网站]
This year's Oscars ceremony was an up and down affair, but the acceptance speeches were top drawer. From Patricia Arquette's plea for equal wages to John Legend's critique of the American judicial system, this year's Academy Award winners had more on their minds than just Hollywood. That extended to the backstage area as well, where Arquette, Legend, "Imitation Game" writer Graham Moore and "Citizenfour" director Laura Poitras all expounded on their Oscar moments. Below are the 22 most noteworthy things said backstage at the 87th annual Academy Awards.
Patricia Arquette, Best Supporting Actress for "Boyhood"
"It's time for us. It's time for women. Equal means equal. It's inexcusable that we go around the world and talk about equal rights for women in other countries when we don’t have equal rights for women in America. When they wrote the constitution, they didn’t intend it for women. It's time for all women in America and all the men who love women and all the gay people and people of color that we've all fought for to fight for us now." John Legend, Best Original Song for "Glory" from "Selma"
On his wife, Chrissy Teigen: "She inspires me. My biggest song is ‘All Of Me’ and it’s about us and what it means to be in love unconditionally. She’s so happy right now. She’s been crying since I won. She’s trying not to do it on camera. We are going to celebrate tonight."
"I wanted the song to sound triumphant but also show that there is more work to do. We are going to do that work. We want to do that work. And we hope that our song is an inspiration for how to live with a spirit of love and not a spirit of fear. Hopefully we can take those lessons and recognize each other’s humanity and try to strive toward a love that is public."
Common, Best Original Song for "Glory" from "Selma"
- "Nina Simone talked about using a platform. The fact that we have the opportunity to get to a stage like the Oscars -- how could you not say anything? Especially when representing a film like 'Selma.' Those are the things we can do as people in positions of power and influence. I feel it’s our duty. I don’t hold any other artist accountable -- but I feel it’s our duty."
Laura Poitras and Mathilde Bonnefoy, Best Documentary for “CITIZENFOUR”
Mathilde Bonnefoym, on people calling Edward Snowden a traitor: “One of the things people can do is focus on the person Snowden. We tried to give him a real voice. I think when you see it, you see that his motives were pure and authentic. He is a young man who decided to end his life as he knew it. It was an extraordinary act of courage."
Laura Poitras: “All we need to do is look at the civil rights movement and see what the government did to Martin Luther King Jr. There is no oversight. We should be very concerned about democracy.”
Graham Moore, Best Adapted Screenplay for "The Imitation Game"
- On how difficult it was to make his emotional acceptance speech: “The camera is just a little black circle. It’s not like I see a billion people. It was hard. I’m a writer -- when am I ever going to be on television? This was my 45 seconds in my life to get on TV and I might as well use it to say something meaningful.”
Alejandro G. I.árritu, triple-win for “Birdman”: Best Film, Best Original Screenplay, Best Director
On his nationality: "I cannot have these stupid borders, flags and passports. They were invented by human society. Naked, we are entirely the same. I have never felt that different. To make films in the U.S. or Africa or Mexico, I'm talking about human beings and emotions. That's the beauty of art. It doesn't have the borders that fuck the world so much."
"I don't have a career. I have a life. Today I'm living it fully. I don't know what will happen later, but today is great."
"I haven't figured out why I did what I did in this film. Why I took those chances. I think it's when you lose fear. Fear is the condom of life. It doesn't allow you to enjoy things. I made this without one and it was making love for sure."
"Kids are so obsessed with competition. In order to feel good about themselves, they have to defeat someone else. I hate that. Once I finish a film, I feel successful."
"I would like to ask you to do me a favor: say that I did this for my mom. She was watching it on TV and I didn't mention her. My mom is a big part of this journey. She's very old and I would like her to know." Julianne Moore, Best Actress for “Still Alice"
"My husband has been amazing. He's also the person who walked me up the steps to get my Oscar. I don't know if people could see that. This is the first time I've told anybody this -- but he was the first person to see the movie. He came with me and I heard him crying. When we walked out of there, he said, 'You're going to win an Oscar.' That's how much he supported me from the very beginning."
"I go to the movies because I like to see complicated, interesting stories about people and relationships. So when there's success with a film like this, then people think about them more. But at the end of the day, Hollywood is a business. I think it depends on how many people buy tickets." Eddie Redmayne, Best Actor for “The Theory of Everything"
On his speech: "I was just trying to bury all this frenzy of nerves and white noise and trying to speak articulately. It just felt like an extraordinary euphoria, really."
On the future: "Retaining employment will keep me very happy."
"I was not that nervous because three years ago, I came to the Oscars for the first time with 'Les Misérables' and had to sing. Just before going on, someone said, 'Yeah that’s a billion people watching.' That's too much stress for your vocal chords to possibly consider! Today felt much more relaxing. You either win or you lose. Either way, I was just so excited to be invited to the party."
"What’s been great is staying in a hotel just down the road with friends of mine -- Emma Stone, Sienna Miller and my wife" [he then cradled his Oscar like a baby]. J.K. Simmons, Best Supporting Actor for "Whiplash”
"I read a very romantic book when I was in college -- Rilke's 'Letters To A Young Poet.' I've always felt that if you are in any artistic endeavor and you feel that there’s something else you could do for a living and be happy, I think you should do something else, because you're much more likely to find comfort and happiness. But if you can look deeply within yourself and honestly answer that nothing else will bring you satisfaction, then there's your answer."
On slower times in his career: "The lean times were a wonderful and beautiful time of my life. I was struggling for many years doing regional theater for not much money and doing odd jobs in between. But I didn't have a wife and kids to support. I didn't have responsibilities aside from feeding myself and being a decent human being. I look back on those times with great fondness."
When asked if he will now get on Twitter, Simmons simply said: "No." Emmanuel Lubezki, Best Cinematography for "Birdman"
"The first time Alejandro I.árritu talked to me about [‘Birdman’], he said he wanted to do a movie in one shot. This was before I had read the script. And in that moment, I truly, honestly thought: ‘I hope he doesn’t offer me this movie. I’m not interested. It sounds like a nightmare.'"
The Oscars——"Birdman" Ascendant
“BIRDMAN” flew away with the Oscars this year. Alejandro González I.árritu’s hallucinatory backstage farce won the Academy Awards for Best Film, Director (pictured), Screenplay and Cinematography. If it weren’t for Eddie Redmayne’s uncanny transformation into Stephen Hawking in “The Theory Of Everything”, it is likely that I.árritu’s leading man, Michael Keaton, would have won in the Actor category, too. In the circumstances, it’s easy to feel a pang of disappointment for Richard Linklater, the writer-director of “Boyhood”. His beautiful, surprisingly feminist chronicle was neck-and-neck with “Birdman” in the awards ceremonies that preceded the Oscars, but ultimately “Boyhood” had to make do with Patricia Arquette’s Best Supporting Actress trophy. In the voters’ minds, perhaps, the struggles of an ordinary Texan family were less compelling than the headaches of being a fading Hollywood movie star.
In general, the Oscars fell the way they were expected to—as they usually do these days, now that there are countless websites and algorithms devoted to their prediction. Wes Anderson’s dessert-trolley-for-the-eyes, “The Grand Budapest Hotel”, was the evening’s other big winner, for Score, Production Design, Costume and Make-up. Julianne Moore (“Still Alice”) and JK Simmons (“Whiplash”) thoroughly deserved their Best Actress and Best Supporting Actor victories, even if Ms Moore was really being honoured for her work in numerous earlier, better films than “Still Alice”. Hers was a classic “Right Actor, Wrong Role” Oscar, to rank alongside Al Pacino for “Scent Of A Woman” and Paul Newman for “The Color Of Money”.
There were only two salient injustices—and again, they weren’t unexpected. “The Imitation Game” won for Best Adapted Screenplay, despite its failure to convey what the Bletchley Park code breakers actually did, and its inclusion of risibly fake clashes between the boffins and the brass (“We need six more months!” “You’ve got one month!”). Meanwhile, the decision to give the Best Animated Feature award to Disney’s cynical, forgettable attempt to launch a superhero cartoon franchise, “Big Hero 6”, only emphasised how absurd it was that the far superior “Lego Movie” wasn’t even nominated.
If the ceremony raised any broader question, it is whether we have finally seen the demise of the Hollywood Oscar-bait movie. For decades, the Best Picture category was dominated by high-sheen, middle-brow, supposedly uplifting, politically liberal epics, from “Gandhi” to “Dances With Wolves” to “The English Patient”. They were usually based on novels or true stories, they tended to be on the dull side, and, in the 1990s, they were often driven to award-nabbing glory by the campaigning of Miramax’s head honcho at the time, Harvey Weinstein. If you were the kind of person who only went to the cinema once a year, you could see such a film and come away with the comforting assurance that Hollywood (and its British counterpart) was still making well-crafted, largely humourless entertainment. But times have changed: in recent years, the Best Picture line-up has skewed ever more low-budget, quirky and unpredictable. Anybody who plumped for “Birdman” as their annual cinema outing would have stumbled out of the cinema wondering what on earth they had just seen.
Ironically, Hollywood is now reliant on indie movies and foreign imports when it wants to congratulate itself: of this year’s eight Best Picture finalists, “American Sniper” was the only film to come from a major studio, and Sunday’s prize-winners were virtually indistinguishable from those at the Independent Spirit Awards on Saturday (although “Boyhood” did better at the Independent Spirits).
One reason for the sea change is that in 2009 the Oscars expanded the Best Picture shortlist from five titles to a potential ten, making room for some riskier contenders. Another factor is that cutting-edge cable television dramas have whetted audience appetites for more daring fare. Less romantically, however, the key factor is that Hollywood’s studios are now shovelling their money into superhero franchises, having given up on any project that won’t sell a zillion dollars of plastic figurines to a global audience. A stodgy three-hour biopic directed by Ron Howard just doesn’t represent the same international investment as an “Iron Man” sequel.
Many a hand-wringing article has been written, bemoaning the demise of the mature, mid-level Hollywood movie. But when you look at the runners and riders at this year’s Academy Awards, you have to ask whether the studios’ cowardice is actually a positive thing. Whether you prefer Mr. I.árritu’s formal fireworks, Mr. Linklater’s low-key humanism, or Mr. Anderson’s neurotically precise whimsy, it’s clear that that the glut of superhero blockbusters hasn’t stopped innovative, experimental, personal films being made—and those films are now getting the sort of mainstream media coverage that they wouldn’t have done back when stuffily prestigious Oscar bait was hogging the Best Picture shortlists. The Academy’s new indie-friendly attitude may have resulted in “Birdman” being this year’s main winner, but cinema-goers can count themselves lucky, too.