Leo takes home long-awaited Oscar on Hollywood’s big night


Leonardo DiCaprio finally bagged his first Oscar with the Best Actor prize at the 88th Academy Awards last night at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. DiCaprio, 41, has been nominated for a total of six Oscars in his meteoric movie career, three for Best Actor. He has finally secured the official Hollywood seal of approval of winning an Oscar at this year’s ceremony for his role in wilderness and revenge movie The Revenant.

In his politically-charged acceptance speech, on what was a fairly serious night’s business by Hollywood standards, the actor dedicated his award to the indigenous people of the world, and made a strong statement about climate change.

“Making The Revenant was about the relationship between man and nature – climate change is real. It’s happening right now. We need to support leaders around the world who speak for all of humanity, and not those focused on greed. I thank you all for this amazing award tonight. Let us not take this planet for granted. I do not take this award for granted,” said Leo DiCaprio, to a standing ovation.

Leo’s acceptance speech was not the only political statement, as Oscars ceremony  host Chris Rock addressed Hollywood’s apparent lack of diversity. The #OscarsSoWhite campaign hung over this year’s proceedings, with some famous names neglecting to attend the ceremony.

Rock addressed the matter with controversial humor, calling the Oscars the ‘white People’s Choice awards’, and questioning why the diversity concerns emerged this year rather than in the 1950s and 60s, saying that Black Americans had “real things to protest at the time.”

Winning the Best Director Oscar for The Revenant, director Alejandro González Iñárritu addressed diversity too. “Maybe next year the government will inflict some immigration rules on the Academy. Two Mexicans in a row, that’s suspicious, I guess,” joked Iñárritu, at his own expense as a Mexican. The director dedicated his win to Mexicans and Mexican-Americans. “I just pray that they can be treated with the same dignity and respect as the ones who came before and built this incredible immigrant nation.”

As featured and highly commended by the BricPlusNews reviewing team in London, acclaimed Pakistani ‘honour’ killing film A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness took home the Best Short Documentary award. The Best Feature Documentary award went to Amy, a touching biopic about the departed songstress Amy Winehouse.

The big winner of the night based on sheer number of statuettes claimed was the Australian dystopic sci-fi thriller Mad Max: Fury Road, which was nominated in ten categories, taking home six of the golden statuettes in technical categories such as Best Editing and Best Sound Mixing.

Chris Rock’s frequent comments were the story of the night however. With this level of controversy, few would bet on comedian Rock’s return to the coveted hosting spot in 2017. Others were saying that it was Rock who had helped defuse the awkward absence of black Americans from the Oscars podium, and he deserved an Oscar himself.


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