“There’s been a mistake.The winner is Moonlight.” The infamous quote was said by Jordan Horowitz at the 89th Annual Academy awards. By far the most spoken about part of the night, Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty read out that La La Land had won best picture, and moments later discovered that the award had actually gone to Moonlight, directed by Barry Jenkins. La La Land’s directors and producers were in the middle of giving their acceptance speeches when producer Jordan Horowitz called attention to the mistake. Later Jimmy Fallon joked, “I blame Steve Harvey,” a comedic reference to last year’s Miss Universe competition, when Harvey announced the wrong winner at the awards. Moonlight’s cast and crew proceeded to go on stage and give their speeches. People watching on their TV’s across the country, and audience members throughout theatre, could not believe what they had just witnessed.
To describe Moonlight, Barry Jenkins’s second feature, as a movie about growing up poor, black and gay would be accurate enough. It goes through sixteen years of the life of Chiron, a young man growing up in Miami, Florida who is learning about who he is as a person, and discovering his sexuality and what it’s like to be gay.The movie begins with Chiron as a 10-year-old boy when his classmates have already labeled him ‘gay’ before he really knew what the word meant. By the time he turns 16 and comes out as gay, the bullying still continues. He is incredibly lonely without his mother ever being home.During the third and final chapter of this story, Chiron is grown up, goes by the name Kevin, and is completely unrecognizable. The movie attracted millions viewers worldwide and earned 27 million dollars in the opening week, the The When the cast found out that they had won best picture, they all ran up on stage celebrating with tears of joy. A shocked Barry Jenkins exclaimed, “Even in my dreams this could not be true, but to hell with dreams because this is true.”
Emma Stone went on to win the award for best actress for her role in La La Land. She won a Golden Globe in January prior to the Oscars for best actress in a musical. The story entails an aspiring young actress in Hollywood falling in love with a passionate musician trying to restore the jazz scene to its glory days as it’s dying out in modern society. This was Stone’s first Oscar, and she thanked director Damien Chazelle for casting Ryan Gosling and ‘raising the bar’.
The 89th Academy Awards will certainly be remembered for years to come.From Emma Stone’s humble and gracious speech after winning best actress, to the announcement of the wrong movie for best picture, these awards were unlike any other. Known for being one of the most prestigious award ceremonies in the world of entertainment, this year’s Oscars proved to be an unpredictable night that provided drama and excitement worldwide.