Bong Joon Ho’s black comedy Parasite was the big winner on Oscar night, taking home four Academy Awards, including best picture, best director, best original screenplay and best international feature.
Parasite made history Sunday night in several ways: This marked the first time best international feature and best picture were won by the same movie. It was the first win in a new category after best foreign-language film was changed this year to best international feature. And it was the first win for a South Korean movie. In May, it was the unanimous winner of the Palme d’Or at Cannes, presaging its awards-season triumph.
Parasite outshone the night’s expected winner, Sam Mendes’ WWI entry 1917, which won three Oscars for sound mixing, visual effects and cinematography for Roger Deakins, who has been nominated 14 times and now won twice in two years. In 2019, he won this award for his work on Denis Villeneuve’s Blade Runner 2049.
The acting categories had all been locked down for months and, as such, the expected winners in all four categories won Sunday night: Brad Pitt for best supporting actor for Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon A Time in Hollywood, Laura Dern for best supporting actress for Noah Baumbach’s Marriage Story, Joaquin Phoenix for Todd Phillips’ Joker and Renee Zellwegger for Rupert Goold’s Judy.
Best animated feature went to Disney’s Toy Story 4, while best documentary feature went to Netflix’s American Factory, which was executive produced by former President and First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama’s production company.
Taika Waititi won an Oscar for his adapted screenplay of Jojo Rabbit, about a young Nazi boy whose imaginary friend is Hitler, played by Waititi.
Joker, besides its win for lead actor Phoenix, also won an Oscar for Icelandic composer Hildur Guðnadóttir, who is just the fourth woman to win in this category and the first since 1997. To highlight this, Irish conductor Eimear Noone became the first woman to ever conduct on the Oscars stage, overseeing a medley of all of the best-score nominations.
Once Upon A Time in Hollywood, which turned the clock back to 1969 Los Angeles, won a second Oscar for production design.
In the technical categories, James Mangold’s Ford v Ferrari won two Oscars for sound editing and film editing.
Greta Gerwig’s Little Women won for best costume design, giving costume designer Jacqueline Durran her second Oscar after seven nominations. She won her other Oscar in 2012 for Anna Karenina.
Bombshell, about the revelations of sexual misconduct at Fox News, won the Oscar for best hair and makeup, largely for transforming Charlize Theron into former Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly and John Lithgow into the late Fox News chief Roger Ailes.
Elton John and Bernie Taupin won the Oscar for best original song for Rocketman’s (I’m Gonna) Love Me Again, which John performed on stage.
[Images courtesy of ABC]