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Arts and Entertainment

LAist's 2014 Oscars Liveblog: 12 Years A Slave Is Best Picture But Ellen Took A Twitter-Breaking Selfie

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As the crew of SyFy's Ghost Hunters stakes out the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion hoping to scare up some footage of famed Oscar host Bob Hope's ghost firing off ancient one-liners ("So Jimmy Cagney and Bing Crosby walk into a bar..."), gazillions of viewers the universe over will be tuning into ABC tonight to watch the 86th Academy Awards. Host Ellen DeGeneres has been workshopping her opening number for weeks now, trying to find the perfect way to blend her patented Mom-Approved™ choreography with the kinds of topical AIDS and slavery jokes that will ensure her place atop tonight's Trending Topics. Tonight's Oscar festivities promise to be the most memorable since last year's, which is why why we'll be here all night long liveblogging from the comfort of our Room & Board couch. So grab some Lemmon 714s, make sure you don't have any metal in your science oven, open up another tab with our Official LAist Oscars Drinking Game and Red Carpet livestream, and buckle your seatbelts ... it's gonna be a wild ride!


9:39 p.m. We've got a burning hot question: did the pizza delivery guy ever get the tips from Pharrell's hat? A TMZ photog stalked him and saw him receive a warm welcome. But he wouldn't say much:

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We've got our fingers crossed he'll end up on the Ellen DeGeneres Show.

9:03 p.m. Well, with that, we are OUT! Thank you for joining us this evening. We hope you got good and drunk, we hope you won your Oscar pool (we only missed 2!), and we hope you have a safe and fun Oscar night. A huge thanks to Jen Chung, our Oscars correspondant Jean Trinh, my trusty cohort Emma Gallegos, and everyone who took the time to read, comment, or share this post on social. Until next year!


Best Picture winning producer Brad Pitt accepts for 12 Years A Slave (Getty Images)
8:59 p.m. It looked all night like it was going to be Gravity's night, but the night's big prize for Best Picture ended up going to 12 Years A Slave. The Academy dodged a bullet and a million thinkpieces by doing the right thing and voting for a powerful film about one of our country's most unforgivable atrocities. I can't even imagine what would have happened had it gone Gravity's way, but now we can all call Brad Pitt an Oscar winner. What a world!

Oh, and Ellen's selfie has over 2 million Tweets (she said it broke Twitter):


8:54 p.m. Alright alright alright! Matthew McConaughey just won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his role in Dallas Buyers Club. And yes, his speech went on and on and on, but he did say something that resonated with us. "It is a scientific fact that gratitude reciprocates." All snarkiness aside, this is a pretty dope sentiment. Props to you, Wooderson.


8:53 p.m. More from Jean, who's backstage in the press room: "For best original song for Frozen, Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez continued being adorable. She was holding a necklace made out of dry macaroni and cardboard letters that spelled out 'EGOT' that she made with her daughters and put it around his neck."

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8:46 p.m. Cate Blanchett won the Best Actress Oscar for her role in Blue Jasmine, but her speech left a lot to be desired. She got things off on a bad foot by misusing the word "exacerbate," then she told Julia Roberts to "HASHTAG SUCK IT," then she screamed "THE WORLD IS ROUND, PEOPLE!" for some reason we didn't quite catch. She barely mentioned Woody Allen, and instead focused her speech on giving props to Australia. A blown opportunity.

11:42 p.m. Do you love the Oscars AND social media experts? Then the above tweet is the tweet for you.

8:39 p.m. Just getting word that this tweet is breaking World Record. Congrats, Kevin Spacey!

8:35 p.m. And your Best Director award goes to Alfonso Cuaron, director of Gravity. It's an interesting side note that Angelina Jolie is the one who announced this award, as she was originally attached to star in the role that eventually went to Sandra Bullock. (Robert Downey Jr. was attached to the Clooney role.) Does this portend a Gravity Best Picture win? We don't think so. (And we certainly don't hope so!)

8:26 p.m. They are just cranking out these awards at an epic pace right now! Best Adapted Screenplay went to John Ridley for 12 Years A Slave, and Best Original Screenplay to Spike Jonze for Her. Spike clearly didn't rehearse his speech and did not take advantage of the moment whatsoever. A great victory for an awesome dude, but I think he'll look back on that speech and cringe for the rest of his life.

8:19 p.m. Two more Oscars to announce: Gravity wins for Best Score and "Let It Go' wins for Best Original Song. (Btw, we hope you're enjoying this -- we have been at this for five hours and 20 minutes now. Wish us luck!)

8:09 p.m. Our favorite singer has always been and will always be Adella Dazeem. Right John Travolta? Ugh, dude. Spend less time on your laughable toupee and more time practicing your lines, you goon. He should publicly apologize to poor Idina Menzel.

8:02 p.m. Well, here come the waterworks. It's In Memoriam time. So, who anchored the politically charged death montage? Phillip Seymour Hoffman, just as we predicted. We're also glad they found room to include Sarah Jones, the camera assistant for the upcoming Gregg Allman biopic Midnight Rider, who was killed on set last month by an oncoming train. And Bette brought the house down with a stirring, if oddly sequenced, version of her stone classic "Wind Beneath My Wings."

7:44 p.m. Another Oscar win for Catherine Martin, this time for Production Design for The Great Gatsby.

7:32 p.m. That Ellen selfie tweet is up to 650,000 retweets right now, but we have a mission for you, LAist readers. Let's get this tweet of Liza Minnelli unsuccessfully trying to get her face in Ellen's selfie above that number. WE CAN DO IT! WE CAN DO IT! WE CAN DO IT!


7:29 p.m. We're a bit behind in congratulating Lupita Nyong'o, Best Supporting Actress winner for her work in 12 Years A Slave. It took us awhile to write about this because, to be quite honest, we teared up pretty significantly during her speech. It was the part about "dreams being validated" that took us down for the count. A well-deserved win, Lupita. May you always remember when Liza Minnelli got her paws on you.

7:28 p.m. And a Best Cinematography Oscar goes to Gravity. And Best Film Editing, too.

7:25 p.m. The above tweet is via Jen Chung, who also adds "Meryl is like the new Jack Nicholson; he used to be the one in on all the jokes."

7:13 p.m. More from our on-site correspondant, Jean Trinh! "Robin Mathews, winner of best makeup for Dallas Buyers Club, said she used grits and cornmeal as makeup for Matthew McConoughey to make sores on his face because the film budget was so low ($4.5 million). 'Matthew was a huge advocate of it.' I said, 'I can't put grits and cornmeal on your face, dude."

7:08 p.m. Two more technical achievement awards for Gravity: Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing. Called it!

7:03 p.m. We're about halfway through tonight's ceremony, how are you all feeling out there? We felt sluggish, like we just ate a sub that had been in the fridge a few days too long, after U2's boring and pompous tribute to Mandela. But then Ellen took that "Most RT'd Selfie Ever" photo and, well, we finally admitted to ourselves that she's an incredibly likable host. Ellen is, in fact, incredibly hard NOT to like, which we think is her special sauce. Still, since we always tend to side with the underdog, we embedded Carson Kressley's crappy picture of his TV instead of Ellen's official selfie above. You do you, Carson! QUEER EYE 4 LIFE!

6:53 p.m. Ellen just did her first costume change. Patton Oswalt is not impressed.

6:50 p.m. The Great Beauty just won the Oscar for Best Documentary Feature. (We know you are keeping score at home, as we are.)

6:42 p.m. Kevin Spacey, himself a 2-time Oscar winner, just broke into a little House Of Cards accent while on stage. In the past, daring to even REFERENCE a television show while onstage at the Oscars would've gotten one blackballed from the motion picture industry for a few life sentences, but everyone in the crowd—even Jennifer Lawrence!—seemed to get and appreciate the reference. The sands are shifting, people.

6:39 p.m. Annnnnnnd 20 Feet From Stardom took home Best Documentary Feature. There was a very nice and spontaneous standing O for Miss Darlene Love, but we really wish she would have sang "Christmastime For The Jews" while up on stage instead.

6:32 p.m. The winner for Best Short Film Live Action was NOT Mr. Voorman (as we predicted), but rather, Helium. Thanks for nothing, Vegas and Oscarologist jerks! And for Best Documentary Short Subject goes to The Lady In Number 6 (which we did get right).

6:28 p.m. Karen O and Vampire Weekend's Ezra Koenig teamed up for a gorgeous rendition of "The Moon Song" from Her. Our esteemed leader Jen Chung had this to say: "This song is the polar opposite of the likely winning song is—it's really intimate and pretty. 'Let It Go' is about power and volume." Donald Trump, however, predictably disagreed.

6:24 p.m. Btw, Gravity won the Oscar for Best Visual Effects. No surprise there.

6:21 p.m. Here's a detail from LAist's own Jean Trinh: "Jared Leto passed his Oscars around the press room and told all the reporters to 'take a fondle' and they did. (It was really heavy!) He also said the song that sums up his feeling about his Oscars win is 'City of Angels.'"


6:13 p.m. Well, we just lived through tonight's Jacqueline Bisset senior moment. Poor Kim Novak let a combination of nerves, excessive botox and a fistful of the muscle relaxers that Molly Ringwald's sister took before her wedding in Sixteen Candles get the best of her. Saint Matthew McConaughey, he of the McConaissance, took this unexpected behavior in stride, furiously rubbing Miss Novak's back like Temple Grandin massaged those cows, calming her right the eff down. Still, Novak sadly stumbled her way through the cue cards, going off script, but in the end, McConaughey saved the day just like you knew he would. (Oh, by the way, Best Animated Short went to Mr. Hublot, and Best Animated Feature went to Frozen; our sincere apologies for missing on Mr. Hublot in our official Oscar pool advice column.)

6:09 p.m. More Oscar surprises, after this! Leo and Sandy seemed genuinely surprised. Props to Ellen! #ELLENBOMBED

6:02 p.m. Your Oscar winner for Best Production Design is Catherine Martin (The Great Gatsby), and your Oscar winner for Best Costume Design is Dallas Buyers Club. Just in case you're keeping score at home, that makes LAist 3 for 3 with our Oscar picks so far. Not much else to say. #humblebrag

5:57 p.m. Pharrell wore short pants on the red carpet, but broke out his trademark 200 gallon hat for his performance of "Happy." In case you're wondering if he's gonna take home Lupita Nyong'o after she freaked him the aisle, the answer is (probably) no. Pharrell is married to this tall drink of water, Helen Lasichanh.


8:53 p.m. Preach, Mark Harris, preach! (via Jen)

5:43 p.m. Jared Leto is your Oscar winner for Best Supporting Actor (as we predicted). Somewhere, Brian Krakow tearing out his curly ginger hair, piece by piece, cursing God for not blessing him with even 1% of the beauty of Jordan Catalano. Shout out to Frozen Embryos, shout out to Venezuela and the Ukraine, shout out to Leto cosplay, and shout out to Tino. (And Ellen was right; Jared is BEAUTIFUL.)


5:33 p.m. Ellen's monologue contained neither a slavery nor an AIDS joke, but she did accuse Liza Minelli of being a male Liza Minnelli impersonator. In her universe, that's considered edgy. Somewhere, David Gest is fuming.


5:20 p.m. LAist Exclusive! Calista Flockhart set to star as Mary Shaw in a reboot of Dead Silence. Can't wait!


5:11 p.m. Great Zeus' ghost! Why is Thor making his uber-preggo wife Elsa Pataky sit in the Kodak Theater for the next five to seven hours? Hope she brought some Asgards or it's gonna be hemorrhoid city for her.


4:57 p.m. Anne Hathaway won an Oscar last year, cementing her place as America's Anti-Sweetheart™. Her publicist has a plan to get Annie back on top, though, starting TONIGHT. As you can see, she's looking to woo the Comic Con crowd and showed up to the red carpet dressed as Iron Man. COSPLAY BUZZ!

4:54 p.m. Tyson Beckford is a handsome man. A very handsome man, in fact. However, as the famous saying goes, both children and male models are better seen and not heard. Tyson just proved that old adage true by calling Julia Roberts "Jessica Roberts" during the ABC pre-game show. Julia's dead half sister (the one who famously hated Julia's guts) is cackling with delight from the grave.

4:48 p.m. Harrison Ford showed up on the red carpet with Ally McBeal. His choice of earring ... a hoop! According to the rules, that means you take a shot. And we do, too. Blame Indy, not us!

4:35 p.m. It wouldn't be an awards show if Jennifer Lawrence didn't do something meme-able. Does this second consecutive Oscars fall foretell a second consecutive Oscar win? Our guess is no, but we shall see!

4:29 p.m. In true Rust Cohle fashion, Matthew McConaughey posits an existential question about selfies while on the red carpet with Seacrest.

4:24 p.m. "Ooh, I spotted Robert Iger and Willow Bay behind Cate Blanchett and Ryan Seacrest. Iger looked right at the camera and all I could feel was, 'You cancelled Twin Peaks.'" (This just came over the transom from our fearless leader, Jen Chung.)

4:19 p.m. Just a reminder that Jessica Biel showed up on the red carpet sans Timberlake, so take a shot! (See: The Alcohol Buyers Club: The LAist Oscars Drinking Game for a complete list of rules.)

4:17 p.m. Remember when Chris Rock hosted the Oscars? We miss him already.


4:13 p.m.Memo to aspiring TV producers: There's a reason lower right bugs work so well. #HASHTAGFAIL

4:02 p.m. Kelly Osbourne and Ross Matthews are having dueling coniption fits somewhere far, far away from E!'s actual red carpet setup over Lupita Nyong'o's "Nairobi blue" dress. Is that a real color or are they just being a teeny bit racist? Asking for a friend.


3:54 p.m. Whose lovely, exquisite, dainty, sculptured shinbones, are those? Lupita's? Viola's? Halle's? Wait what they are Pharrell's? Move over Arby's Hat, short pants haven't been this relevant since the days of Spanky and The Little Rascals.


3:40 p.m. Just in case you had forgotten Jonah Hill was Jewish, E! is here to remind us all of his Hebrew roots. Good luck with your Best Supporting Actor nomination tonight, Jonah Feldstein!

3:28 p.m. Olivia Wilde is an exceedingly gorgeous pregnant woman, but we just can't shake the feeling that all is not right with Jason Sudeikis post-SNL. He looks rail-thin, anxious and unhappy. Why is he trippin'? He's got a lovely lady by his side, a baby on the way, and those boffo We're The Millers residuals hitting his direct deposit on the regs.

3:14 p.m. Someone must've stuck a thumb tack in Seacrest's lifts because he has his CLAWS out already. He just straight up murked Oscar Loser™ Viola Davis by asking her "Is it different coming tonight as a presenter versus being a nominee?" Translation: "Better luck next year, beeyatch. Now gets to steppin'!" #BITCHCREST

3:00 p.m. To start things off on a relatively bland yet incredibly informative note, we'd like to let you know that you can watch a livestream of the Oscars red carpet right here on LAist. Perfect for cordcutters, or for those of you who find yourselves reaching for a sharp object after prolonged exposure to Ross Matthews' voice.