Recapping the 94th Academy Awards


Courtesy of The Academy on Instagram

The cast of Best Picture winner, CODA. 

Editor’s Note: This article is a review. Views are the individual’s own and do not represent the views of the organization. 

The 94th Academy Awards aired live on Sunday on ABC — intended to be a celebration of movies. But Will Smith stole the show after his confrontation with Chris Rock.

In recent years, the Oscars have received fair criticism for not putting up a show that is appealing for the general movie fan. This year, ABC and the Academy made a few changes to the show with the intention of increasing viewership and making the event more entertaining.

Throughout the broadcast, the Oscars added two main categories for fans to vote on Twitter with the hashtags #OscarFanFavorite title and #OscarCheerMoment. Zack Snyder was the big winner of both categories with his cut of “Justice League” winning best movie moment of 2021 and his Netflix original “Army of the Dead” winning the fan-favorite film of the year.

When it comes to academy voted awards, the Apple TV+ original film “CODA” was the big winner of the night taking home best picture, best supporting actor and best-adapted screenplay. Troy Kotsur, a supporting actor in “CODA”, is the first deaf actor to win an Academy Award.

“The Power of the Dog” won the best director with Jane Campion becoming the third woman to ever win an Oscar. Jessica Chastain won the best actress for “The Eyes of Tammy Faye” and Will Smith won the best actor for “King Richard” after confronting comedian Chris Rock.

Chris Rock had come on stage to present the award for best documentary feature. Moments before announcing the winner, Rock made a joke about Jada Pinkett, Will Smith’s wife, and her alopecia condition. Will Smith did not take the joke lightly, walked on stage and slapped Chris Rock.

This viral moment was censored by the North American version broadcast; however, a full uncensored clip can be found on YouTube. As of this moment, it stands as number one trending with around 42 million views.

This unfortunate event takes away from where the spotlight should be: The movies.

From now on, no one will remember the awards and the people that won them. The 94th Oscars will forever be stained by this confrontation.

In terms of the technical awards, Denis Villeneuve’s “Dune” takes home the most awards with the best cinematography, editing, sound, production design, visual effects and score. This is the first time in Oscar history that a film won six categories but did not have the director nominated for an award.

Hans Zimmer, the composer of “Dune” was not present to receive his award; however, he expresses his gratitude in Amsterdam for winning his second Oscar. His first win was for “The Lion King” 28 years ago.

This was also an important year for international films. Best picture nominee “Drive my Car” (Japan) wins best international feature, “The Worst Person in the World” (Norway) was nominated for two big awards (adapted screenplay and international feature) and “Flee” (Denmark) made an impression with its nominations for best animation, documentary and international feature.

The broadcast of the Oscars drew 15.36 million viewers last night, which is a significant increase from the 9.85 million last year.