Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance).
The film, directed by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, who also won best director, stars Michael Keaton as an aging superhero movie star suffering an identity crisis— and seeking redemption by mounting a serious Broadway play. It’s been hailed for its ensemble cast and its virtuosic camera work, which gives the sensation that the whole movie is shot in one continuous take.
The other nominees were: American Sniper; Boyhood; The Grand Budapest Hotel; The Imitation Game; Selma; The Theory of Everything; and Whiplash.
Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything.
“The Theory of Everything” star was considered the Oscar front-runner for best actor. But his oversized reaction when he won gave no hint of entitlement. Redmayne, 33, who portrayed scientist Stephen Hawking in the film that tracked both his physical decline as well as his first love, rushed on to the stage like a kid. He mugged a big grin for presenter Cate Blanchett and, at one point in his speech, hugged the Oscar statuette with delight.
“I don’t think I’m capable of articulating quite how I feel. … But please know that I’m fully aware I’m a lucky, lucky man,” the British actor said.
Julianne Moore for Still Alice.
Moore won her first Oscar as best actress for Still Alice, and she shined a light on Alzheimer’s disease in her acceptance speech Sunday night. The 54-year-old actress added an Academy Award to the Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild trophies she won earlier for her role as a college linguistics professor who is diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s. “I’m so happy, I’m thrilled that we were able to shine a light on Alzheimer’s disease,” Moore said. “So many people who have this disease feel marginalized. People who have Alzheimer’s disease deserve to be seen so we can find a cure.”
J.K. Simmons, Whiplash.
In Whiplash, J.K. Simmons played a cruel jazz band instructor who berates and humiliates his students, including Miles Teller, who co-stars as an aspiring jazz drummer in Damien Chazelle’s film. It was the first Oscar nomination for Simmons, 60, a longtime character actor. He also won the Golden Globe in January.
His acceptance remarks were refreshing as he offered a shout-out for parents around the globe. Pivoting from praise for his wife’s parenting of their three children, he urged the legions watching to “call your mom, call your dad.” And no texts or emails. “Call them on the phone and tell ’em you love ’em, and thank them and listen to them for as long as they want to talk to you.
“Thank you, mom and dad,” he said as he left the podium.
Patricia Arquette, Boyhood.
In Boyhood, Arquette played the mother of Ellar Coltrane’s Mason in Richard Linklater’s sweeping look at a boy’s life, filmed over 12 years. It was the first Oscar for Arquette. She also won the Golden Globe in January.
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu for Birdman.
“I don’t have a career. I have a life,” Inarritu said after being asked to reflect on the night after the ceremony ended. “Today I’m living it fully. Enjoying it completely. I don’t know what will happen, but today is great.”
The director has been hailed for his craftsmanship in “Birdman,” which gives the sensation of having been filmed in one continuous shot. The film stars Keaton as an aging blockbuster movie star seeking to restore his reputation — and bolster his ego — by mounting a serious Broadway play.
“This is like a slow motion kind of moment in my life,” Inarritu said.
Alejandro G. Inarritu, Nicolas Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris Jr. and Armando Bo, Bird man.
Foreign language film: Ida.
Adapted screenplay: Graham Moore, The Imitation Game.
Original screenplay: Alejandro G. Inarritu, Nicolas Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris Jr. and Armando Bo, Birdman.
Animated feature film: Big Hero 6.
Production design: The Grand Budapest Hotel.
Sound mixing: Whiplash.
Sound editing: American Sniper.
Original score: The Grand Budapest Hotel.
Original song: Glory from Selma.
Costume design: The Grand Budapest Hotel.
Documentary feature: CitizenFour.
Documentary (short subject): Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1.
Film editing: Whiplash.
Makeup and hairstyling: The Grand Budapest Hotel.
Animated short film: Feast.
Live action short film: The Phone Call.
Visual effects: Interstellar.