Nomadland triumphs at the Oscars

Chloé Zhao becomes the second woman ever to win Best Director

by Jennie Kermode

Carey Mulligan at the Oscars
Carey Mulligan at the Oscars Photo: Matt Petit / A.M.P.A.S.

Following a fantastic awards season, Nomadland has been named Best Picture at the 93rd Oscars. It also saw Chloé Zhao win Best Director. She's the first woman of colour ever to win the award and only the second woman to have won it, after Kathryn Bigelow did so for The Hurt Locker in 2010. Though clearly excited, she kept her composure, and it was only when Harrison Ford, presenting the Editing award, mentioned her name that she looked briefly overwhelmed and starstruck. Frances McDormand won Best Actress for her work in Nomadland, howling like a wolf in celebration, while the Best Actor award went to Anthony Hopkins for his work in The Father.

Andra Day at the Oscars
Andra Day at the Oscars Photo: Matt Petit / A.M.P.A.S.

Daniel Kaluuya won the Best Supporting Actor award for Judas And The Black Messiah, thanking God and all those who supported him in his youth and helped him to believe that he could be somebody. In an unusual move, he went on to thank his parents for having sex, while his mother looked on with a startled expression.

Best Supporting actress went to Youn Yuh-jung for her work in Minari. She thanked director lee Isaac Chung and also "my two boys, for making me go out and work." This meant that Glenn Close went home empty handed for an eighth time, but she still seemed to be having fun, surprising fellow attendees with her musical knowledge and an unexpected display of twerking.

Another Round won Best International Feature Film, a triumph for Denmark and director Thomas Vinterberg. Receiving the award, Vinterberg dedicated it to the memory of his daughter, who would have had a role in the film but was killed by a careless driver during pre-production. He thanked his cast and especially star Mads Mikkelsen, not only for his contribution as an actor but also for the way that he supported Ida.

There were no surprises in the Best Animated Feature and Best Documentary categories, with Soul and My Octopus Teacher taking the awards. Both were incredibly popular with the public, though the wider filmmaking community was divided over the Academy's choices.

The first awards to be announced tonight were those for writers, with Emerald Fennell taking the prize for Best Original Screenplay for Promising Young Woman, while the Best Adapted Screenplay gong went to Christopher Hampton and Florian Zeller for The Father.

A win in the Best Make-Up and Hairstyling category for Ma Rainey's Black Bottom was groundbreaking because it represented the first ever recognition at that level for a woman of colour.

Leslie Odom Jr and Nicolette Robinson arrive on the red carpet.
Leslie Odom Jr and Nicolette Robinson arrive on the red carpet. Photo: Matt Petit / A.M.P.A.S.

Earlier we watched the stars as they arrived on the Oscar red carpets in Los Angeles, London and Paris. Special precautions were taken to keep things Covid-safe, hence the multiple locations, and several stars were wearing masks, some of them carefully coordinated with their outfits. Despite this - and the fact that they couldn't interact with fans as many like to - the event was as glamorous as ever.

Leslie Odom Jr and his wife Nicolette Robinson were among the early arrivals, looking particularly stylish together, while Glenn Close cut an impressive figure in dazzling blue by Armani Privé, and little Alan Kim made a big impression as always, wearing a smart black suit with stripy socks. Emerald Fennel wore a dress to match her name and Yeri Han looked stunning in scarlet. Gold was the standout colour of the night, however, with Carey Mulligan's spectacular Valentino gown stealing the show.

There was also a lot of jewellery on display, including work by classic designers like Cartier and Tiffany, as the stars made a big effort to bring back the glamour that everyone had missed.

Several guests shared pictures of their outfits on social media ahead of the big event as the excitement builds. Like other people, a lot of them had been cooped up inside for months and had really been looking forward to the chance to go out and party. Those who followed advice and isolated for two weeks in order to be sure they wouldn't be infectious were talking about how excited they felt about being able to make physical contact with people outside their families again, and Daniel Kaluuya expressed his intention to party all night long.

Those winners in full:-

Best Picture

Best Director – Motion Picture

Best Performance By An Actress In A Motion Picture

Best Performance By An Actor In A Motion Picture

Best Performance By An Actor In A Supporting Role

Best Performance By An Actress In A Supporting Role

Best International Feature Film

Best Animated Feature Film

Best Documentary Feature

Best Documentary Short Subject

Best Live Action Short Film

Best Animated Short Film

Best Original Screenplay

Best Adapted Screenplay

  • Christopher Hampton and Florian Zeller - The Father

Best Cinematography

Best Editing

Best Costume Design

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

Best Production Design

Best Visual Effects

Best Sound

Best Original Score

Best Original Song

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