A journey from snubs to spotlight

Only two things have the potential to make me haul myself off the bed at the very unearthly hour of 5 in the morning. The ‘things’ in question being The Academy Awards and examinations. All thanks to the nearly 13 hours and 30 minutes time zone difference between where I live and The Dolby Theatre, I’ve got to get up at the crack of dawn to watch as the events unfold. But it’s THE ACADEMY AWARDS! So I can’t really complain. I was most excited about whether this was going to be the year when Leo finally gets his hands on an Oscar! Presenter Chris Rock definitely took the stage by storm (or should I say The Academy?) Not one to beat around the bush, he made sure that OscarSoWhite took centre stage. The hilarious film parodies served to drive the point home. But he did raise a valid point when he said that opportunities have to be provided. It was an incredible hosting on his part – inciting laughter and making people stop and think about it, at the same time. In my opinion, The Academy couldn’t have chosen a better person to host the 88th Academy Awards.

I’m no film critic, and I won’t try to be one either. Lady Gaga’s heart-rendering performance, Alejandro  Iñárritu’s brilliant acceptance speech, and Pete Docter’s moving words notwithstanding, the most memorable moment for me was when the winner for the Best Actor in a Leading Role was announced. The build-up was intense, as the world held its breath and hoped against hope that The Academy won’t snub Leonardo DiCaprio for the sixth time. To my delight, 2016 turned out to be the year when the Academy decided that it got tired of snubbing one of the brilliant actors of our times. The list of brilliant actors who have never won an Oscar is rather long, but I, for one, am glad that The Academy decided to let Leonardo DiCaprio off that hook. His win put an end to the numerous memes about his bad luck at the Oscars. Amidst standing ovation, Leonardo finally picked up the one award that had managed to elude him for nearly 22 years and the Internet exploded with memes, albeit with a difference this time. (Check this out – Leo’s Red Carpet Rampage) His reaction was, in no way close to the many predictions that had been making the rounds all over the Internet. 22 years of long wait, and when he finally took the stage, he used his time in the spotlight to create awareness about Climate Change. (I’m going let the whole chinook fiasco slide.) Not many would have done the same thing, especially in what must have been an overwhelmingly emotional moment. And what a way to conclude a great acceptance speech – “I do not take tonight for granted”. It’s no surprise that DiCaprio’s win became the most-tweeted moment ever in Oscar history. That moment alone was worth staying awake for. As Alejandro  Iñárritu mentioned in his speech, Leo DiCaprio WAS the revenant. (read – a guy whose ‘Oscar’ dreams had been repeatedly mauled by the Academy and left hanging in midair, avenges his previous Oscar snubs.) Portraying Hugh Glass certainly wasn’t a piece of cake. It certainly ticked all the right ‘Oscar’ boxes!

On a completely different note, I hope that opportunities and honours are provided to those who deserve it. And of course, that this is the first of many Oscars for Leo. Here’s to no more Oscar snubs… for Leo!!

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© 2016 Shweta Suresh. All rights reserved.

Image courtesy: Getty Images

GIF courtesy: GIPHY

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