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2024 Oscars Live Blog 9 min read

2024 Oscars Live Blog

Check back for my ongoing commentary of film's biggest night.

By Cary Littlejohn

9:30 PM CDT:

Well, that's all she wrote. It ended in a predictable yet uncertain way with Pacino seeming like he might not be doing his job correctly (many wondered if he wasn't supposed to either just read the nominees or at least read them before he announced the winner).

But it was a good night at the Oscars, mainly because it was a good year in film. Oppenheimer continued its award season domination, and it deserved to do so. Poor Things got a lot of love and provided a little excitement for the one truly competitive race that wasn't fully decided before the night arrived (Best Actress).

Ovreall, there were 23 categories on the ballot that I shared below. I didn't guess in two of the categories, and I missed two (The Boy and the Heron and Emma Stone). So that leaves me at 19/21 (that I actually guessed) and 19/23 overall. Not a terrible night and always a lot of fun.

Go to the movies next chance you get.

9:20 PM CDT:

Al Pacino is out here presenting the nominees for—nope, scratch that. Straight into the envelope. And the winner for Best Picture is Oppenheimer.

9:17 PM CDT:

Kimmel reads a mean tweet about his hosting performance from none other than former president Donald Trump. Thank you for watching, Kimmel says. "I'm surprised you're still up. Isn't it past your jail time?"

My second incorrect prediction of the night. Hate it so much for Lily and Killers of the Flower Moon getting blanked. But so genuinely happy for Emma Stone and the recognition for her brilliant performance in Poor Things.

9:13 PM CDT:

Best Actress.

Annette Benning-Nyad
Lily Gladstone-Killers of the Flower Moon
Sandra Hüller-Anatomy of a Fall
Carey Mulligan-Maestro
Emma Stone-Poor Things-WINNER

9:10 PM CDT:

Closing in on the finale here. Before we get to the night's main prize, we have another round of my new favorite thing—personalized introductions for the acting categories.

9:06 PM CDT:

Nolan's shoutout to the Academy was quite touching. Imagine being there 100 years into painting or some other art, he said. It's impossible to know where it will go, but an honor to know they think he's contributed something to the ever-growing history of film

9:05 PM CDT:

Best Director. No surprises here.

Justine Triet-Anatomy of a Fall
Martin Scorsese-Killers of the Flower Moon
Christopher Nolan-Oppenheimer-WINNER
Yorgos Lanthimos-Poor Things
Jonathan Glazer-The Zone of Interest

9:03 PM CDT:

Steven Spielberg, say whatever you want. We love you

9:00 PM CDT:

Once again, these personal introductions are just the best thing. I hear the folks craving for clips from the films, but this is honestly just so much nicer. I vote for both. But this is gold.

Bradley Cooper-Maestro
Colman Domingo-Rustin
Paul Giamatti-The Holdovers
Cillian Murphy-Oppenheimer-WINNER
Jeffrey Wright-American Fiction

8:57 PM CDT:

Cillian Murphy about to bring it home yet again for Oppenheimer, now that Best Actor is up.

8:50 PM CDT:

Beautiful strings performance for the In Memoriam segment.

8:43 PM CDT:

And Best Song. (But after that "I'm Just Ken" performance, we all know who should win.)

The Fire Inside-Flamin' Hot
I'm Just Ken-Barbie
It Never Went Away-American Symphony
Wahzhazhe (A Song for My People)-Killers of the Flower Moon
What Was I Made For?-Barbie-WINNER

8:39 PM CDT:

It's time for Music (Original Score).

American Fiction
Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny
Killers of the Flower Moon
Poor Things

8:30 PM CDT:

Finally, the moment we've all been waiting for: "I'm Just Ken" performed by Ryan Gosling in a sparkly pink suit.

Looks like the entire cast of Kens is there for the performance, which is just so cool.

And now here's Slash (SLASH! yes, that Slash. Of Guns 'N Roses.) playing the solo? The Oscars are back, y'all.

Cliche to say it, but this was one of those categories you could predict as you were in the film itself. The sound was just the most visceral part of The Zone of Interest.

8:26 PM CDT:

Sound is up next, introduced by John Mulaney, which goes off on a tangent about Field of Dreams and how it should win Best Picture (which, sure, who amongst us...right?).

The Zone of Interest-WINNER
The Creator
Mission: Impossible-Dead Reckoning Part I

8:17 PM CDT:

Short Film (Live Action).

The After
Knight of Fortune
Red, White, and Blue
The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar-WINNER

Well, well, well. Wes Anderson, long overlooked for his brilliance in feature-length films by the Academy, wasn't there to accept his win for the short.

Hoyte van Hoytema telling future filmmakers to shoot on celluloid +1

8:14 PM CDT:

Cinematography. Let's gooooooo!

El Conde
Killers of the Flower Moon
Poor Things

8:06 PM CDT:

Surprisingly, for me, I haven't seen most of the Best Documentary films, either.

Bobi Wine: The People's President
The Eternal Memory
Four Daughters
To Kill a Tiger
20 Days in Mariupol-WINNER

8:04 PM CDT:

Best Documentary Short, another category where I have total ignorance.

The ABCs of Book Banning
The Barber of Little Rock
Island in Between
The Last Repair Shop-WINNER
Nai Nai & Wai Po

7:55 PM CDT:

Would listen to John Batiste sing the phone book.

So it begins. Oppenheimer's about to clean house.

7:53 PM CDT:

Film Editing is up next.

Anatomy of a Fall
The Holdovers
Killers of the Flower Moon
Poor Things

7:50 PM CDT:

The award for Visual Effects is up.

The Creator
Godzilla Minus One-WINNER
Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 3
Mission: Impossible-Dead Reckoning Part I

Another brutal use of the play-off music as this man bravely struggles through a speech in a foreign language he most likely didn't expect to give.

7:46 PM CDT:

Nowhere is safe from the nostalgia play. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito are presenting together. Their connection? No, not Twins. But the fact that they both tried to kill Batman.

When they call out Michael Keaton and say, "He's right there! You've got a lot of nerve," Keaton had to know the camera was right on him because he does not flinch. Until he beckons them to bring it on. Loved it more than I expected to.

7:39 PM CDT:

Robert Downey, Jr. is giving off some weird, nervous energy in the early moments of his speech, but he settles in nicely. Then kind of gets weird again at the end. But couldn't be happier for the man.

7:33 PM CDT:

Former Best Supporting Actors are coming on stage to introduce the nominees for this year's Best Support Actors. Like with the actresses, these represent my favorite introductions. They feel so personal, so real, so heartfelt. It's just really nice to see.

Sterling K. Brown
Robert De Niro
Robert Downey, Jr.-WINNER
Ryan Gosling
Mark Ruffalo

7:27 PM CDT:

I love Ryan Gosling. His apparent beef with Emily Blunt over Oppenheimer's success at the expense of Barbie is genuinely funny. I can't wait for their upcoming film, Fall Guy.

Although, I will say this is a bit of weak sauce, since it's just an admission that there should have been a Stunt/Choreography category at the Oscars for decades now. If we're truly getting a new category in coming years, I don't understand why it isn't this one.

This category represents the one I'm most excited to catch up on. I have Perfect Days and Teachers' Lounge in my Up Next on my Apple TV.

7:24 PM CDT:

Up next: Best International Feature Film

Io Capitano
Perfect Days
Society of the Snow
The Teachers' Lounge
The Zone of Interest-WINNER

7:20 PM CDT:

Incredible live performance by members of the Osage Nation. It's a real shame that Killers of the Flower Moon won't get more love from the Academy tonight.

7:13 PM CDT:

It's now Costume Design, as introduced by the costume-less Cena.

Killers of the Flower Moon
Poor Things-WINNER

7:12 PM CDT:

John Cena as a failed streaker is a great bit. The man's comedic chops continue to impress me. Love this so much.

7:08 PM CDT:

That's two for Poor Things (and two that I could have easily got wrong in the predictions, but I truly believe deserved this one). It was such a novel world they created for the film, one that was easy to get lost in. It could be an early sign for how much the Academy loves the film and presages Emma Stone over Lily Gladstone for Best Actress.

And now the award for Production Design.

Killers of the Flower Moon
Poor Things-WINNER

7:05 PM CDT:

Michael Keaton and Catherine O'Hara are absolutely delightful. Give them anything they want.

It's time for Makeup and Hairstyling.

Poor Things-WINNER
Society of the Snow

6:50 PM CDT:

Hey, would you look at that? American Fiction just won an Oscar. I was worried I'd get this one wrong because of the huge awards season run of Oppenheimer and the potential consolation prize for the "snubbed" Barbie. If Oppenheimer had won, it would basically have just erased any slight doubt that the film was going to run the table throughout the night. If Barbie had won, it would have annoyed me in terms of category fraud—like, really? Barbie, the film, was adapted from just the fact that Barbies have existed as a toy forever now? Seemed a perversion of the category, no matter how much I like Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach writing things.

Cord Jefferson's speech is great. I loved every second of it. And he's right—a $200 million movie is STILL a risk, so why not take a chance on 20 different $10 million films instead? I like his vision of Hollywood (but I know this man is probably going to fend off dozens of offers to join Marvel's or DC's ranks—check out Wesley Morris and Pablo Torre discussing the same possibility).

Adapted Screenplay

American Fiction-WINNER
Poor Things
The Zone of Interest

6:48 PM CDT:

Octavia Spencer and Melissa McCarthy are striking out on this extended bit. But I continue to love them both.

Original Screenplay

Anatomy of a Fall-WINNER
The Holdovers
May December
Past Lives

6:45 PM CDT:

Screenplay awards up next. These are for the real heads out there. We all know some of the best movies get awarded for their writing and nothing else.

6:43 PM CDT:

Reflecting on The Boy and The Heron, and it just reiterates how much I need to complete the full Miyazaki watch-through. So many described the film as a culmination of everything he'd been exploring for his entire career.

6:39 PM CDT:

The Boy and The Heron wins Best Animated Film. What a surprise but in the best possible way! I definitely didn't think it was going to happen (see my prediction), and my ongoing battle with Connor in Vulture's Movie Fantasy League just took a direct hit, as he had The Boy and The Heron on his team, while I had Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.

This was exactly the right decision, and I'm so happy to be wrong. Maybe there will be some excitement left in the rest of the show.

6:37 PM CDT:

War is Over wins Animated Short.

This is one of the categories where I have to confess total ignorance.

BUT, I can say this for certain: Chris Hemsworth and Anya Taylor-Joy are ridiculously good-looking people.

The music starts to play off the trio, before the last speaker simply wants to shout out his 92-year-old mother on Mother's Day in the U.K.

6:30 PM CDT:

Just thinking about how much I loved The Holdovers. It's one of the few Best Picture nominees that I've watched more than once. When I first saw it, ahead of the holiday season, Randolph's performance of a mother grappling with the loss of her son to the fighting in Vietnam, I was hit hard because it was fast approaching my first Christmas without my dad. Her quiet strength and vulnerability was something I aspired to but new I could never reach.

It wasn't a surprise that Randolph won, but I'm so glad she did.

6:28 PM CDT:

Emotional speech from Randolph. Just love to see it. Good bit of producing for the quick cut to her The Holdovers co-star Paul Giamatti with tears running down his cheek.

6:25 PM CDT:

Touching introduction of the nominees for Best Supporting Actress. Feels personalized and genuine from some all-timer leading ladies of Hollywood.

Jodie Foster
Emily Blunt
Da'Vine Joy Randolph-WINNER
Danielle Brooks
America Ferrera

6:18 PM CDT:

Some good jokes in Jimmy Kimmel's monologue, but I loved the one about what a long year it's been. "Remember that kid from the The Fabelmans? This is what he looks like now." Cut to Steven Spielberg in the audience.

6:15 PM CDT:

Fine, fine. Since you're all dying to know, I'll dish on who I'm wearing: the fabulous stylings of Letterboxd.

It's finally here, film's biggest night (or at least its supposed biggest night but we all know its biggest night in recent memory was at some point during the opening weekend of Barbenheimer).

I'm going to be watching and blogging along, because why not?

To kick things off, here's my list of predictions.

(Note: This list does not necessarily represent who should win, in my mind, but who I think will win by night's end). Other cinephiles marked theirs up with two colors (one for who will win, one for who should win), and others, like my friend Connor, simply cast a ballot as if her were in the Academy.

Thanks to the fine folks at Letterboxd for providing an unofficial ballot for me to mark up, unofficially.