Last night, the 88th Academy Awards aired on ABC, and despite our disappointment in the lack of nominations for people of color, there were plenty of highlights from the night. Here are some of our favorite moments from the 2016 Oscars.
1. Kerry Washington straight preaching on the Red Carpet with Robin Roberts
Kerry Washington looked like her trademark gorgeous self on the red carpet in a Versace gown, but we quickly forgot to care about who she was wearing after she talked to Robin Roberts about diversity in the film industry and why she decided not to boycott the Oscars. Washignton said, “I really respect and admire some of the people who aren’t here tonight. I really get it, but for me I felt like my voice is best used at the table...I really want to be part of the conversation to make sure that there’s institutional change so that we never have a year like this again so that we can be as inclusive as possible." PREACH Ker-Bear. Preach.
2. #OscarsSoWhite Sketch
One of the highlights of the night was the hilarious sketch that featured black actors like Leslie Jones and Tracy Morgan replacing characters from some of the year's nominees for best picture. It was laugh out loud funny and also packed a punch with its point about diversity in this year’s films. Morgan as the Danish Girl is just straight-up brilliant.
3. Lady Gaga’s performance of “Til It Happens To You”
Gaga was joined onstage by survivors of sexual abuse for a chilling performance of her song, which was nominated for "Best Original Song" from The Hunting Ground, a documentary about sexual assault on college campuses. The performance was beyond moving, and the added bonus was that she was introduced by her friend and ours, Joe Biden.
4. Director Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy’s acceptance speech for Best Documentary Short
Winner of Best Documentary Short for her film A Girl on the River: The Price of Forgiveness, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinory gave a beautiful acceptance speech which started with, “This is what happens when determined women get together.” She completed the speech by announcing that last week, the Pakistani prime minister promised to change the law on honor killing after watching this film. Incredible.
5. Spotlight's Best Picture Acceptance Speech
The producer of Spotlight, Michael Sugar, also had an acceptance speech with an important message. The film was based on the true story of how the Boston Globe uncovered the child molestation scandal and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese. Sugar said, "This film gave a voice to survivors, and this Oscar amplifies that voice, which we hope will become a choir that will resonate all the way to the Vatican. Pope Francis, it’s time to protect the children and restore the faith." A great call to action to end the evening.
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