News / Arts & Entertainment

'12 Years a Slave' Wins Best Picture Oscar

Director and producer Steve McQueen jumps after accepting the Oscar for best picture for his work in
Director and producer Steve McQueen jumps after accepting the Oscar for best picture for his work in "12 Years a Slave" at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood, CA, March 2, 2014.
Reuters
The slavery drama 12 Years a Slave won the Academy Award for best picture on Sunday, making history as the first movie from a black director to win the film industry's highest honor in 86 years of the Oscars.

British director Steve McQueen's unflinching portrayal of pre-Civil War American slavery also won two other Oscars, including best supporting actress for newcomer Lupita Nyong'o and best adapted screenplay based on the memoir of Solomon Northup, a free man sold into slavery in Louisiana.

"Everyone deserves not just to survive but to live, this is the most important legacy of Solomon Northup,'' said McQueen in his acceptance speech.

It prevailed over space thriller Gravity from Mexican filmmaker Alfonso Cuaron, which nevertheless racked up the most Oscars of the night with seven, including the best director honor for Cuaron, a first for a Latin American director.

WATCH: Penelope Poulou's Interview with Alfonso Cuaron

Interview with film director Alfonso Cuaroni
X
February 28, 2014 9:29 PM
VOA's Penelope Poulou spoke with Alfonso Cuaron about his visual masterpiece "Gravity." Cuaron talks about technological challenges and innovations in making the film and the hard physical work put in by actors Sandra Bullock and George Clooney in portraying two astronauts adrift in space.

Gravity, starring Sandra Bullock as a stranded astronaut, swept the technical awards like visual effects and cinematography, a reward for its groundbreaking work on conveying space and weightlessness.

In one of the strongest years for film in recent memory, the 6,000-plus voters of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences scattered golden Oscar statuettes among the many acclaimed movies in contention.

It was a good night for the scrappy, low-budget film Dallas Buyers Club, a biopic of an early AIDS activist two decades in the making that won three Oscars, including the two male acting awards.

Matthew McConaughey, in a validation of a remarkable career turnaround, won best actor for his portrayal of the homophobe turned AIDS victim turned treatment crusader Ron Woodroof, a role for which he lost 50 pounds (23 kg).

Jared Leto accepts the award for best actor in a supporting role for “Dallas Buyers Club” during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on March 2, 2014, in Los Angeles.Jared Leto accepts the award for best actor in a supporting role for “Dallas Buyers Club” during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on March 2, 2014, in Los Angeles.
x
Jared Leto accepts the award for best actor in a supporting role for “Dallas Buyers Club” during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on March 2, 2014, in Los Angeles.
Jared Leto accepts the award for best actor in a supporting role for “Dallas Buyers Club” during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on March 2, 2014, in Los Angeles.
His co-star, Jared Leto, won best supporting actor for his role as Woodroof's unlikely business sidekick, the transgender woman Rayon, for which he also slimmed down drastically.

Australia's Cate Blanchett won the best actress Oscar for her acclaimed role as the socialite unhinged by her husband's financial crimes in Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine. 

``Thank you so much Woody for casting me,'' Blanchett said.

The tale of Nordic princesses, Frozen, won best animated film, a first for Disney Animation Studios since the category was introduced in 2002.

Comedian and talk show star Ellen DeGeneres returned as Oscar host on Sunday in an appearance many saw as calculated to project a lighter, more affable tone for Hollywood's biggest night after the provocative performance of her immediate predecessor, Seth MacFarlane.

In the comedian's easy breezy style, DeGeneres mixed with the crowd, taking a star-studded selfie with the likes of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie that broke the record for retweets on Twitter.

The big loser of the night was director David O. Russell's 1970s crime caper American Hustle, which walked away empty-handed despite earning 10 nominations, the same number as Gravity.

Lupita Nyong'o, best supporting actress winner for her role in Lupita Nyong'o, best supporting actress winner for her role in "12 Years a Slave", speaks on stage at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood, CA. March 2, 2014.
x
Lupita Nyong'o, best supporting actress winner for her role in
Lupita Nyong'o, best supporting actress winner for her role in "12 Years a Slave", speaks on stage at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood, CA. March 2, 2014.
Kenyan actress Nyong'o was one of the big stars of the night, not only for her winning pale blue Prada gown on the red carpet, but for her touching speech.

 In accepting the first award of the night for 12 Years a Slave, Nyong'o, 31, paid homage to her character.

It does"n't escape me for one moment that so much joy in my
 life is thanks to so much pain in someone else's, and so I want to salute the spirit of Patsey, for her guidance,'' a tearful Nyong'o told the audience.

  • From Left, Matthew McConaughey, Cate Blanchett, Lupita Nyong'o, and Jared Leto pose in the press room with their awards during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre, March 2, 2014, in Los Angeles.
  • Matthew McConaughey winner of the award for best actor for his role in the "Dallas Buyers Club" poses in the press room during the Oscars.
  • Cate Blanchett speaks on stage after she won best actress for her work in 'Blue Jasmine" at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood, CA, March 2, 2014.
  • Jared Leto accepts the award for best actor in a supporting role for “Dallas Buyers Club” during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on March 2, 2014, in Los Angeles.
  • Lupita Nyong'o, best supporting actress winner for her role in "12 Years a Slave", speaks on stage at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood, CA. March 2, 2014.
  • Alfonso Cuaron accepts the Oscar for best director for "Gravity" at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood, CA. March 2, 2014.
  • Kristen Anderson-Lopez, left, and Robert Lopez pose in the press room with their awards for best original song in a feature film for “Let It Go” from “Frozen” during the Oscars.
  • Paolo Sorrentino poses in the press room with the award for best foreign language film of the year for "The Great Beauty" during the Oscars.
  • Emmanuel Lubezki poses in the press room with the award for best cinematographer of the year for "Gravity" during the Oscars.
  • Anthony Katagas, from left, Jeremy Kleiner, Dede Gardner, Steve McQueen, and Brad Pitt pose in the press room with the award for best picture of the year for "12 Years a Slave" during the Oscars.

Error rendering storify.

You May Like

Multimedia US Defense Secretary: Iraqi Forces Lack 'Will to Fight'

Ash Carter criticizes Iraq's reaction to Islamic State; National Security Advisor Susan Rice echoed Carter's concerns in an interview on CBS More

Boko Haram Surrounds Havens With Land Mines

Chad and Cameroon say huge numbers of land mines planted by Boko Haram fighters along Cameroon's border with Nigeria are a danger to people, livestock and soldiers More

Women Peace Activists Cross Korean DMZ

Governments of Koreas give international delegation of women peace activists permission to pass through heavily fortified border, but some critics say symbolic crossing only benefits Pyongyang More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs

New in Music Alley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harry Wayne Casey – “KC” of KC and the Sunshine Band – comes to VOA’s Studio 4 to talk with "Border Crossings" host Larry London and perform songs from his new album, “Feeling You! The 60s.”