Due to the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, many questioned whether the 93rd Academy Awards show, or more popularly known as the Oscars, would take place this year.
Would it be a virtual ceremony? Would actors be muted if their speeches were too long? How will these actors go on in life without being congratulated in solid bronze form?
Fortunately for fans of the ceremony, the 2021 Oscars went on as planned even though it was postponed for two months.
Several things of note occurred during the ceremony, including one actress howling like a wolf and another actor mentioning his parents having sex.
Sounds like it was a good show, right? Well, you can make your mind up at the end of this article.
Here are 10 highlights of the 2021 Oscars, just in case you missed it.
1. A Google Ad Which Played During the Show Was Most Interesting than Some Segments
Some viewers of the Oscars this year who suffer from insomnia reportedly had an amazing night of sleep for the first time in years.
This is because the awards show this year was painfully dull at times: there were no songs, no nominee clips, and no presenter.
It’s not so much that these Oscars haven’t been fun so far that bothers me. It’s that they haven’t even TRIED to be fun.
— Josh Horowitz (@joshuahorowitz) April 26, 2021
I figured the Oscars would be boring but not quite this boring
— Susan Orlean (@susanorlean) April 26, 2021
That’s probably why so many viewers are talking about a Google ad which played during the show instead of the ceremony itself.
The ad featured a pair of deaf grandparents using various pieces of technology to communicate during the pandemic.
Viewers were deeply touched by the ad, with some even calling for the ad to receive an Oscar.
As a CODA, or “child of deaf adults,” Googler Tony has always shared a unique bond with his parents. But when the pandemic forced a physical distance between them, they found new ways — and a new reason — to stay close. 🤟 pic.twitter.com/ZPrauhIRbc
— Google (@Google) April 26, 2021
2. Steven Yeun’s Hilarious Terminator Story
You probably know Steven Yeun as Glenn Rhee from The Walking Dead, but Yeun has recently gained critical acclaim for his starring role in the 2020 American drama film “Minari”.
Yeun didn’t win an Oscar for his performance, but netizens were certainly tickled when he recounted a story about seeing “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” with his mother in 1991.
— Nancy Wang Yuen 王嵐芝 (@nancywyuen) April 26, 2021
“When I was 7, living in Taylor, Michigan, my mother took me to watch ‘Terminator 2’ at the theaters. I’m pretty sure she didn’t know what the movie was about,” he said.
“And to her and my surprise, we got to see some… stuff.”
He then went on to describe the gruesome violence which he and his mother witnessed in the theatre that day, and how he kept glancing over to his mother to see if she was okay with it.
“I just remember… my mom playing it cool, as if she meant to bring me to this movie. But maybe that’s just my memory,” he joked.
3. Best Supporting Actor Winner Daniel Kaluuya Thanks His Parents for Having Sex
One of the most amusing moments in this year’s ceremony was Daniel Kaluuya’s acceptance speech after he won Best Supporting Actor for his role in “Judas and the Black Messiah” (2021).
Kaluuya, known for his role in “Get Out” (2017), started off his speech in a traditional manner, thanking those who have helped him on his way to Hollywood success.
But he then went off book and thanked his parents for, uh, doing the dirty deed.
“We have to celebrate life, we’re breathing and working. It’s incredible. My mom, my dad, they had sex, it’s amazing. I’m here!” he said.
His mother did not look pleased, to say the least.
tfw your son ended his oscars acceptance by explaining that you had sex with his father pic.twitter.com/wiZ7j9bNqg
— Kathryn VanArendonk (@kvanaren) April 26, 2021
4. Chloé Zhao Makes Oscar History
Chloé Zhao made Oscar history when she became the first Asian woman and the first woman of color to win the best director award.
The 39-year-old directed “Nomadland” (2020), an American drama film about a woman who lives as a van-dwelling nomad after losing everything in the Great Recession.
In her speech, Zhao recited a short Chinese poem her father taught her, before translating it to English: “People at birth are inherently good,” she said.
“Those six letters had such an impact on me as a kid,” she said.
— The Academy (@TheAcademy) April 26, 2021
And the great thing about Zhao’s win as a woman and woman of colour this year was that she wasn’t the only one.
5. More Women and Actors of Colour Were Nominated Than Ever Before
In fact, this year’s ceremony saw more women and more actors of color nominated than ever before.
In addition to Zhao and Kaluuya, Korean actress Yuh-jung Youn won best supporting actress for “Minari”.
Mia Neal and Jamika Wilson also made history with their win in Best Makeup and Hairstyling for their work on “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (2020), as they became the first black women ever to win in the category.
6. Yuh-Jung Youn Jokingly Calls Out Hollywood Peers For Mispronouncing Her Name
Amidst the protracted, boring speeches, Yuh-jung Youn shone with her dry wit.
She began her speech by gushing over the presenter, Brad Pitt, saying: “Mr Brad Pitt, finally. Nice to meet you.”
She then jokingly called out her Hollywood peers for mispronouncing her name.
“As you know I’m from Korea and actually my name is Yuh-Jung Youn. Most of Europe call me Yuh Youn and some of them call me Yuh-Jung,” she said.
“But tonight, you are all forgiven.”
She also said she was simply “luckier” than her fellow nominees and thanked her sons who “made her go out and work.”
“This is my reward because mommy worked so hard,” she said.
7. Glenn Close Danced to a song Called “Da Butt”
In one of the more entertaining segments of the show, actor Lil Rel Howery tested audience members on their knowledge of Oscar-nominated songs.
When he played a song called “Da Butt” for veteran American actress Glenn Close, the 74-year-old not only answered swiftly, but even shook her butt to the song.
Unsurprisingly, a clip of her dance went viral.
— AC Junior 😷 (@CamJunior1972) April 26, 2021
8. Viewers Were Surprised With a Trailer of the Upcoming “West Side Story”
As previously mentioned, one of the reasons the Oscars wasn’t as enjoyable this year was because there were no live musical performances unlike previous years.
That’s why viewers were excited when Amblin Entertainment dropped its long-awaited first trailer of “West Side Story” (2021) during the Oscars.
— Amblin (@amblin) April 26, 2021
The film is an adaptation of the 1957 musical and is expected to come out in December this year.
9. One Actress Howled Like a Wolf During Her Acceptance Speech
Perhaps the weirdest moment in the show came when Frances McDormand gave her acceptance speech after her film “Nomadland” won Best Picture.
After encouraging viewers to watch her film, McDormand said “We give this one to our wolf”, before howling like an actual wolf and letting out several barks before ending her speech there.
It was strange yet oddly empowering.
10. Anthony Hopkins Wins Best Actor, But People Aren’t Happy
Viewers are never going to agree on all the winners of the awards, as we all have our favourites.
But Anthony Hopkins’ win as Best Actor for his work in “The Father” (2020) seems to be universally opposed.
Why? Because many believed that “Black Panther” (2018) star Chadwick Boseman, who died of cancer last August, was more deserving of the award.
I never truly believed that the producers of the show didn’t know who was gonna win the awards before they were announced until now
— Josh Billinson (@jbillinson) April 26, 2021
Since the award was moved to the end of the show, viewers thought it would go to Boseman, to add more poignancy to his posthumous win.
But because Hopkins won and didn’t even give a speech as he wasn’t present, the show ended on an anti-climatic note, leaving a bad taste in viewers’ mouths.
Though a quieter affair than usual, that concludes our top ten highlights for this year’s Oscars. Now, the question is: did you enjoy the show?
Feature Image: LanKS / Shutterstock.com