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2022 Oscars: Awards, speeches and highlights

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Will Smith slaps Chris Rock on stage at Oscars
Will Smith slaps Chris Rock on stage at Oscars 03:03

There were a number of historic firsts as the 94th Academy Awards returned to the Dolby Theater in Hollywood Sunday night — but they were overshadowed by a shocking moment when Will Smith walked up on stage and smacked Chris Rock after Rock made a joke about Smith's wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.

Then, less than 30 minutes later, Smith gave an emotional speech after winning his first Oscar, for Best Actor. In a line that seemed to allude to his behavior, Smith said that Richard Williams, whom he portrayed in "King Richard," was a "fierce defender of his family," and he offered an apology to the Academy and his fellow nominees.

A big winner of the night was "CODA," a coming-of-age film starring three Deaf actors. It took home Best Picture, and Troy Kotsur became the first Deaf man to win an acting Oscar. Kotsur's win was greeted by the audience raising their hands in a gesture of silent applause..

"This is an amazing journey, I can't believe I'm here," Kotsur said. The film was also the first Best Picture Oscar for a streaming service, Apple+.

Other big wins included Ariana DeBose, the first openly queer woman of color to take home Best Supporting Actress. DeBose won for playing Anita in "West Side Story," the same role that Rita Moreno won for 60 years ago.

Though "The Power of the Dog" led the nominations with 12, its only major win went to director Jane Campion. Best Actress went to Jessica Chastain for her role in "In the Eyes of Tammy Faye."

"Dune" was also a big winner, taking home six awards, including Best Cinematography.

For the first time in several years, the Oscars show had a host — three, in fact, with Regina Hall, Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes sharing hosting duties. 

"This year, the Academy hired three women to host because it's cheaper than hiring one man," Schumer quipped. 

Midway through Sunday night's broadcast, the show observed a moment of silence to honor the ongoing struggle in Ukraine. "We collectively as a global community can do more," said a statement displayed on screen. "We ask you to support Ukraine in any way you are able."

 

Academy reacts to Will Smith-Chris Rock incident

After the broadcast ended, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Scientists took to Twitter to weigh in on Will Smith slapping Chris Rock on stage

The Academy said it doesn't "condone violence of any form," adding simply, "Tonight we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world."

 

"CODA" ends the night with Best Picture win

In what may be seen as an upset, the heartwarming film "CODA" took home the Academy Award for Best Picture. Lady Gaga and Liza Minelli announced the night's highest honor, and the award was accepted by the producers and cast of the film, with sign language interpreters front and center. 

"CODA" won in all three of the categories it was nominated for: Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Supporting Actor for Troy Kotsur.

"CODA" (which stands for Child of Deaf Adults) tells the story of a Deaf family — Kotsur and Marlee Matlin play the parents — and how their hearing daughter comes of age and faces the difficulty of choosing between a more independent future and staying with her family. 

The win is also a triumph for the streaming industry, with Apple TV+ becoming the first streaming service to take home the Oscar for Best Picture. 

"Thank you to the Academy for letting 'CODA' make history tonight," producer Philippe Rousselet said.

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Jessica Chastain wins Best Actress for "The Eyes of Tammy Faye"

Jessica Chastain won the Oscar for her face-changing performance in "The Eyes of Tammy Faye." 

Chastain, who wore major prosthetics to transform herself into the famed televangelist, thanked her fellow nominees, whom she said it was an honor to be nominated and a part of the conversation with. 

94th Academy Awards - Show
Jessica Chastain wins the Oscar for Best Actress in a Leading Role for her performance in "The Eyes of Tammy Faye." Myung Chun / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

The Best Actress winner also spoke out against 'bigoted" and "discriminatory" legislation focused on LGBTQ+ youth. 

"For any of you out there that do in fact feel hopeless and alone, I just want you to know that you are unconditionally loved for the uniqueness that is you," Chastain said in her acceptance speech. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Will Smith wins his first Oscar for Best Actor in "King Richard"

Will Smith took home the Oscar for Best Actor his role in "King Richard," becoming the fifth Black man to win the award. 

Smith's speech focused on love and protection, only a few minutes after the shocking moment where he struck comedian Chris Rock on stage after a joke about Smith's wife. Smith began to cry as he gave his acceptance speech.

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Actor Will Smith accepts the Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role for "King Richard."  ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

"Richard Williams was a fierce defender of his family," Smith said, in tears. "In this time in my life, in this moment, I am overwhelmed by what God is calling on me to do and be in this world."

"I want to be a vessel for love," he said. 

He also said, "I want to apologize to the Academy, I want to apologize to my fellow nominees. This is a beautiful moment and I'm not crying for winning an award … it's about being able to shine a light."

He added, laughing amid his tears, "I look like the crazy father, just like they said about Richard Williams."

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Jane Campion wins for Best Directing

"The Power of the Dog" director Jane Campion won the Academy Award for Best Directing.

Campion, who made history by being the first woman to be nominated twice for the honor, is the third woman to win the coveted award for directing. During her acceptance speech, she thanked her cast and the women who came before her. 

"The Power of the Dog" is also nominated for Best Picture. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Bond songs continue to win at Oscars

Billie Eilish and Finneas took home the Oscar for Best Original Song for their Bond theme, "No Time to Die." This is the 20-year-old Eilish's first Oscar, for a song that was shelved along with the accompanying movie during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

It was the third James Bond song to win at the Academy Awards, with Sam Smith and Adele taking home Oscars in 2015 and 2012, respectively. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

So that happened… Will Smith and Chris Rock fight at the Oscars

In a moment that stunned the live television audience, the Oscars took a surprise turn when nominee Will Smith went up on stage and punched presenter Chris Rock during his monologue. 

It happened after Rock made a joke about Smith's wife Jada Pinkett Smith's haircut, referring to her as G.I. Jane 2, which Smith did not appear to take lightly.

The audio on the ABC broadcast was cut a moment later, apparently to avoid profanity. Uncut footage from other countries, posted on social media, reveal Smith cursing after walking off stage, yelling at Rock, "Keep my wife's name out of your f—ing mouth!"

Pinkett-Smith has been vocal about the fact that her short buzzcut was a choice she made after being diagnosed with alopecia in 2018.

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

"Summer of Soul" wins Best Documentary Feature

"Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)" took home the Oscar for Best Documentary Feature, for its immersive look at the music and impact of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival. 

Director Questlove thanked his family and dedicated his win to his late father. 

"This is about marginalized people in Harlem that needed to heal from pain," Questlove said during his speech, overcome with emotion. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

"In Memoriam" segment includes Betty White and Sidney Poitier

In its annual "In Memoriam" segment, the Academy Awards celebrated the lives and legacies of Hollywood legends who died in the last year.

Special tributes were paid to Sidney Poitier, Betty White, William, Hurt, Michael K. Williams, Ivan Reitman and Stephen Sondheim, as well as filmmakers Jean-Marc Vallée, Peter Bogdanovich and Lina Wertmüller, and numerous others. The Samples Choir performed a medley of songs dedicated to the late icons.

Critics were quick to point out that Bob Saget was not included in the tribute.

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

"CODA" wins Best Adapted Screenplay

In another win for an inspirational story, "CODA" took home the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay. "CODA" tells the story of a teenage girl who is the child of Deaf parents, torn between her devotion to her family and her dream of attending music school.

Director Sîan Heder, who is hearing, had a sign language interpreter accompany her speech, in which she thanked her exceptional cast and her family. 

"You guys are artists, you made me an artist, you made me make things," she said.

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Belfast wins Best Original Screenplay

Best Picture nominee "Belfast" won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. Kenneth Branagh, who also produced and directed the film, accepted the award for the story of a family whose life was changed by the political violence in Northern Ireland. 

"This story is the search for joy and hope in the face of violence and loss," he said.

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Megan Thee Stallion joins "Encanto" cast in "We Don't Talk About Bruno"

In a surprise twist, the cast of "Encanto" was joined by Megan Thee Stallion in a remix of the smash hit song "We Don't Talk About Bruno." 

The "Good News" rapper had a surprise verse in the Oscar performance, where she rapped alongside the movie's voice actors. The performance also included artist Becky G and a plethora of dancers. 

While the performance was received by major energy from the audience and accompanied by viral TikToks behind the performers, it bafflingly didn't include the most viral parts of the song. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

"Cruella" wins Best Costume Design

The Disney film "Cruella" was honored with the Oscar for costume design. Jenny Beavan accepted the award and dedicated it to her late-son-in-law. 

Beavan wore an outfit that said she chose to "honor her inner Cruella" and thanked her "Cruella" compatriots, including actress Emma Thompson. 

"It does bring a bit of fun and joy in these terrible times," she said. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

"Drive My Car" wins Best International Feature Film

Japan's entry, "Drive My Car," took home the Oscar for Best International Feature Film. The award was presented by "Shang-chi" actor Simu Liu and comedian Tiffany Haddish. 

The movie tells the story of a husband's struggle with grief as he grapples with the loss of his dear wife and tries to continue directing a production of "Uncle Vanya."

The film is also nominated for Best Picture. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Troy Kotsur wins Best Actor in a Supporting Role

Troy Kotsur won the Academy Award for his performance in the Apple TV+ film "CODA." This is his first Oscar nomination, and he made history as the first Deaf man to be nominated. His co-star in "CODA," Marlee Matlin, was the first Deaf performer to win an Oscar in 1986.

Troy Kotsur accepts the Oscar
Troy Kotsur accepts the Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role award for his performance in "CODA," from Youn Yuh-jung, on March 27, 2022, in Hollywood. Getty Images

The award was presented by Youn Yuh-jung, who took home Best Supporting Actress last year for her work in "Minari" and who signed Kotsur's name to announce his win. Accompanied by an interpreter, Kotsur delivered his acceptance speech in American Sign Language, thanking his co-stars and the Deaf spaces that allowed him to hone his craft as an actor. 

"This is our moment," Kotsur said in his speech, dedicating it to "CODA" and the entire Deaf community. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

"Encanto" wins Best Animated Feature

The movie whose earworm has taken over households across America has taken home its first Oscar. "Encanto" won the golden statue for Best Animated Feature film, beating out "Flee," "Raya and the Last Dragon" and "The Mitchells vs the Machines." 

Producers of the film celebrated its cast and the film's inclusiveness and said they were extremely proud of how they brought diversity to the screen. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

"Dune" wins Oscar for visual effects, continuing sweep

"Dune" took home yet another Oscar: Best Visual Effects. This is the film's sixth award of the night. 

The award was presented by "Euphoria" star Jacob Elordi and "West Side Story" lead Rachel Zegler, who poked fun at the backlash that allowed her to attend the ceremony. Zegler was added as a presenter after posting on Instagram that she was not invited to the Oscars and planned to be watching at home wearing sweatpants.

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

"Dune" wins Oscar for cinematography

Greig Fraser took home the Oscar for cinematography for his work on the science fiction fantasy "Dune." This is his second time being nominated for the award, the first being in 2017 for Dev Patel-led film "Lion." Fraser is best known for his work on "Zero Dark Thirty" and most recently helped to create "The Batman. " 

Fraser thanked his family in Melbourne, Australia and his co-workers who helped make the film the success it was. "Dune" continues to sweep the awards ceremony, and has already pocketed five awards since the beginning of the show. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Ariana DeBose wins makes history, wins Best Actress in Supporting Role

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Actress Ariana DeBose accepts the award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her performance in "West Side Story" during the 94th Oscars. ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

Ariana DeBose has taken home the statue for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her role as Anita in "West Side Story."

The Spielberg film was also nominated for a myriad of awards, including "Best Picture." She was cheered on by Rita Moreno, who played Anita in the original film and also took home the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress.

DeBose is the first Afro Latina and first openly queer actor of color to take home the coveted award. In her acceptance speech, she thanked the film's director Steven Spielberg and Moreno, who she said were instrumental in her performance. 

"Even in this weary world that we live in, dreams do come true," Debose said. "You see an openly queer Latina woman of color who found her strength in art and I believe that's what we're here to celebrate. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Wanda Sykes, Regina King and Amy Schumer take aim in opening monologue

Wanda Sykes, Regina King and Amy Schumer delivered a comedic opening monologue for the 2022 Oscars, taking aim at a host of nominated films and popular cultural touchstones for the year. 

The presenters, who were announced earlier in the year, made several jokes about the wage gap, Timothée Chalamet and Florida's "Don't Say Gay" bill.

This is the first time since 2018 the awards show has had formal hosts. Kevin Hart was slated to head the 2019 Oscars but was removed as host following the resurface of old homophobic tweets.

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Venus and Serena Williams open 2022 Oscars

Serena Williams,Venus Williams
Serena Williams, left, and Venus Williams introduce a performance by Beyoncé at the Oscars on Sunday, March 27, 2022, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.  Chris Pizzello

Tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams opened the telecast for the 2022 Oscars introducing a performance of the song "Be Alive." The song was created for the Williams' film "King Richard," which tells the story of the Williams' patriarch Richard and his role in the sisters' tennis careers. 

The performance, which was filmed ahead of the ceremony, took place on the same tennis courts that the sisters practiced on in Compton, California. In it, Beyoncé and a league of dancers in delicately braided hairstyles performed the hit song decked out in tennis green evening wear and accompanied by a full string quartet. 

"Be Alive" is Beyoncé's first Oscar nomination. Will Smith, who played the titular role of Richard, is also nominated for Best Actor. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

"Dune," "The Eyes of Tammy Faye" take home first awards of the night

Sci-fi thriller "Dune" struck early before the official Oscars presentation even began. The Villeneuve directed film won Best Sound, Best Original Score, Best Production Design and Best Film Editing. 

"The Queen of Basketball" won Documentary (Short Subject), while  "The Windshield Wiper" won the Oscar for Best Short (Animated). The Oscar for Short Film (Live Action) went to the creators of the "Long Goodbye."

The Academy announced in February that the awards, which are usually presented during the live telecast, would be moved to before the ceremony in an effort to keep the telecast short. 

"We must prioritize the television audience to increase viewer engagement and keep the show vital, kinetic, and relevant," said Academy President David Rubin. 

By Zoe Christen Jones
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