80th Annual Academy Awards Results and Commentary (2008)

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  • Date of Ceremony: Sunday, February 24, 2008
  • For films released in: 2007

Welcome to Digital Hit’s coverage of the 80th Annual Academy Awards.

8:17 PM ET

We’re about 13 minutes away from the awards. The press have settled in back here: we’ve finished eating the jumbo shrimp and cake they feed us and are now preparing for the hard work of covering the big show.

Expectations are high. With the strike and the lack of big glitzy shows this season, fans are like a couple who waited until marriage: they’re hoping the actual event lives up to the anticipation.

8:30 PM ET

Here we go…the show opens with an amazing film sequence of a truck rushing to the ceremony to deliver the awards…everyone it passes on the street is a character from a film.

8:32 PM ET

Jon Stewart, tonight’s host, is introduced.

“You’re here, you’re actually here. These past three and a half months have been tough…the strike is over. Welcome to the makeup sex.”

“The Vanity Fair party was cancelled out of respect to the writers. Want to respect them? How about you actually invite some writers to the Vanity Fair party. They won’t mingle.”

“Lots of psychopathic movies…does this industry need a hug. No Country for Old Men, There Will Be Blood, Sweeney Todd. Thank God for teen pregnancy.”

Javier Bardem combined Hannibal Lecter’s viciousness with Dorothy Hamill’s wedge cut.”

“Dennis Hopper is here for God’s sake. I only say that so that he knows where he is.”

“Diablo Cody used to be an exotic dancer, now she’s an Oscar-nominated writer. Enjoy the pay cut.”

8:41 PM ET

Jennifer Garner is tonight’s first presenter. Looking lovely in black, the gorgeous actress is presenting the Oscar for Costume Design. And the Oscar goes to Alexandra Byrne, for Elizabeth: The Golden Age.

8:46 PM ET

George Clooney strolls out. He discusses the 80 year history of the Oscars before introducing a clip package illustrating the point.

8:51 PM ET

Jon Stewart introduces Get Smart co-stars Steve Carell and Anne Hathaway. Steve discusses documentaries before Anne tells him they’re presenting Animated Feature. And the Oscar goes to Ratatouille and director Brad Bird.

“I think I’m gonna throw up, too. I want to thank the Academy and I also want to thank my junior high guidance counselor for a meeting we had where he asked me, “What do you want to do with your life?” And I said, “I want to make movies.” And he said, “What else do you want to do with your life?” And I said, “Make movies,” and he said, “What if you couldn’t make movies,” and I said, “I’d find a way that I could.”

“What if movies didn’t exist?”

“I’d have to invent them.” And it went on like this until we were sick of each other and i only realized just recently that he gave me the perfect training for the movie business.” – Brad Bird

8:55 PM ET

Katherine Heigl, is tonight’s next presenter for Achievement in Makeup. She quite nervous as she introduces the nominees. And the Oscar goes to Didier Lavergne and Jan Archibald for La Vie en Rose. Star Marion Cotillard looks overjoyed for their win.

8:58 PM ET

Jon Stewart pretends to start singing “Happy Working Song”, before introducing Enchanted star Amy Adams to do the real work.

9:06 PM ET

Jon Stewart tells the viewer that during the commercial breaks, the stars sit around and make catty remarks about the clothes the home audience are wearing.

9:07 PM ET

Dwayne Johnson a.k.a. The Rock, presents Visual Effects. And the Oscar goes to Michael Fink, Bill Westenhofer, Ben Morris and Trevor Wood for The Golden Compass.

“We just want to say “Thank you!” We just brought a small quote from Walt Disney, who said “It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.” “ – Michael Fink

9:09 PM ET

Double nominee Cate Blanchett, always stylish and classy, is tasked with handing out the Oscar for Art Direction. And the Oscar goes to Dante Ferretti and Francesca Lo Schiavo.

“Just i would like to say, this time, thank you, thank you to the Academy. I’m so happy, so grateful. And thank you to Tim Burton. Great director. Johnny Depp and all the actors, Everybody, for this fantastic movie.” – Francesca Lo Schiavo

9:15 PM ET

A winner from last year, Jennifer Hudson, prepares to add a name to the list of Supporting Actor winners. And the Oscar goes to Javier Bardem for No Country for Old Men.

“Wow. Alright, this is very amazing. It’s a great honor for me to have this. I want to & I have to speak fast here, man. Thank you to the Coens for being crazy enough to think that I could do that and put one of the most horrible haircuts in history over my head. Thank you for really proving my work. I want to share this with the cast, with the great Tommy Lee Jones, with the great Josh Brolin, with the great Kelly MacDonald. And I want to dedicate this to my mother…” – Javier Bardem

9:22 PM ET

We’re almost done the first hour here. Jon Stewart introduces a montage that would have been shown if the strike had continued…a tribute to binoculars and periscopes.

9:24 PM ET

August Rush star Keri Russell introduces the next nominated film. “Raise it Up” from…wait for it…August Rush.

9:28 PM ET

Owen Wilson introduces the nominees for Short Film – Live Action. And the Oscar goes to Le Mozart des Pickpockets (The Mozart of Pickpockets)’s Philippe Pollet-Villard.

“Thank you, thank you very much. I don’t really speak English. I’m very bad student. I can say I’m very happy and I want to thank my producer Fabrice Goldstein and Antoine Rein and my wife Gaby and my son Sebastien.” – Philippe Pollet-Villard

9:31 PM ET

The Jerry Seinfeld bee character from Bee Movie introduces a clip package of his early work before introducing the nominees for Best Animated Short. And the Oscar goes to Suzie Templeton and Hugh Welchman for Peter & The Wolf.

“Yeah, no this really is a fairy tale ending for us, but hopefully it’s only the beginning for Peter and this amazing award, and it will help keep Prokofiev’s “Peter and the Wolf” in the hearts and minds of children all over the world. So, the Academy, thank you so much. it’s been amazing.” – Hugh Welchman

9:34 PM ET

We see a clip package showing past winners of Best Supporting Actress. Alan Arkin, last year’s Supporting Actor, says the nominees this year show the golden age of cinema is very much alive. And the Oscar goes to Tilda Swinton for Michael Clayton.

“I have an American agent who is the spitting image of this. Really truly the same shape head and, it has to be said, the buttocks. And I’m giving this to him because there’s no way I would be in America at all ever on a plane, if it wasn’t for him. So, Brian Swardstrom, I’m giving this to you. And Tony Gilroy walks on water, it’s entirely official as far as I’m concerned, and Jen Fox and Steve Samuels, our incredible producers. And Sydney Pollack, and George Clooney, you know, the seriousness and the dedication to your art, seeing you climb into that rubber bat suit from “Batman & Robin,” the one with the nipples, every morning under your costume, on the set, off the set, hanging upside-down at lunch, you rock, man. “ – Tilda Swinton

9:44 PM ET

Jessica Alba, who hosted the Scientific and Technical Acheivement Awards, introduces a few of the winners.

9:45 PM ET

“Jessica Alba is pregnant, Cate Blanchett is pregnant. Two pregnant women, but the night is still young and Jack Nicholson’s here.”

9:46 PM ET

Josh Brolin and James McAvoy toss out some great film lines before handing out the Academy Award for Adapted Screenplay. And the Oscar goes to Joel and Ethan Coen for No Country for Old Men. This is their second screenplay win in the category.

“Thank you very much for this. Thank you, Scott Rudin for bringing us this novel and giving us the opportunity to make the movie. I think whatever success we’ve had in this area has been entirely attributable to how selective we are. We’ve only adapted Homer and Cormac McCarthy, so thank you.” – Joel Coen

9:49 PM ET

Sid Ganis, the Academy’s President, thanks everyone for coming. He discusses the process for choosing the nominees and winners, before a clip package shows members discussing the voting process.

9:52 PM ET

“Our next presenter is Miley Cyrus, and no, I can’t get her to sign anything for your kids.” Miley then intros the performance of another nominated song. Kristin Chenoweth performs “That’s How You Know.”

10:00 PM ET

Jon does some pregnant Jolie schtick before introducing Dame Judi Dench and Halle Berry. Alas, it’s actually Seth Rogen and Jonah Hill. They fight over who’s Judi and who’s Halle before presenting the Oscar for Sound Editing. And the Oscar goes to Karen Baker Landers and Per Hallberg for The Bourne Ultimatum.

“Oh my God, I went blank. It’s such an honor to be here. I want to thank, we want to thank the Academy. We want to thank Universal Studios.” – Karen Baker Landers

Seth and Jonah still fight as they present Sound Mixing. And the Oscar goes to Scott Millan, David Parker and Kirk Francis for The Bourne Ultimatum. It’s back to back sound wins for the action flick.

“…I’d like to add one thing, kind of a somber note, this last week we lost a colleague and a friend, who was also a member of the Board of Governors here at the Academy, his name is Paul Huntsman. I would like to dedicate this to Paul. So, thank you very much.” – Scott Millan

10:09 PM ET

It’s 10:09 and we’re ready to find out the Best Actress winner. Forest Whitaker, last year’s Best Actor, will handle the hardware. And the Oscar goes to Marion Cotillard for La Vie en Rose. She looks terribly surprised. Her true excitement is refreshing.

“Oh — thank you so much. Olivier, what you did to me, Maestro Olivier Dahan, you rocked my life. You truly rocked my life. Thank you so much to Picturehouse for your passion, members of the Academy, thank you so, so much. And — wow. Well, I’m speechless now. I — I — well, I — thank you life, thank you love, and it is true, there is some angels in this city. Thank you so, so much.” – Marion Cotillard

10:17 PM ET

Jon Stewart plays Wii with the young singer from August Rush. He then introduces Colin Farrell. He’s introducing the song from the Irish film Once, “Falling Slowly”.

A sidenote: seeing the show on HD monitors back in the press room really makes me want to buy an HD set.

10:22 PM ET

The king of the Oscars, Jack Nicholson, says he loves the movies before introducing a clip package paying tribute to the previous 79 Best Picture winners.

10:27 PM ET

Renee Zellweger is presenting Best Editing. And the Oscar goes to Christopher Rouse for The Bourne Ultimatum.

“Forty-eight years ago, my father was privileged enough to receive an Oscar, and I’m deeply, deeply honored that you put me in his company tonight. To the brilliant Paul Greengrass, to Frank Marshall, thank you, thank you, thank you. To everybody in post-production, led by my good friend and colleague, Mark Fitzgerald, each and every one of you share in this award with me. To Universal Pictures, to the Academy, my deepest, deepest thanks. To the amazing Matt Damon, thank you. And to my family, especially Anne, Anno, Ava and Fiona. My kids, I love you. Thank you so, so much.” – Christopher Rouse

10:30 PM ET

“No, No,” shouts Stewart. “Someone just took the lead in their Oscar pool based on a guess.” He then introduces Nicole Kidman. She’s there to present the Honorary Oscar to Robert Boyle, the legendary production designer, who’s 98. We see a clip package of his work.

Robert Boyle gets a well-deserved standing ovation as he takes to the stage.

“That’s the good part of getting old. I don’t recommend the other.

It’s not possible for me to express my appreciation to the countless people who helped me on this great trip, this wonderful journey of being in the movies.

But I can thank the members of the Board of Governors of the Academy and to Nicole Kidman who so graciously introduced me.

I would like to remember some of the old folk, like Hans Dreier who took a chance and gave me my first job in the movies, and to “Hitch” who also took a chance and gave me my first big film. And I also would like to remember that Hitch introduced me to the screenwriter Bess Taffel, who became my wife and my companion throughout this wonderful journey. I also would like to thank my children and grandchildren who supported me with their love and support, thank them.

To Norman Jewison, who made moviemaking fun and much laughter while dealing with real subjects. And to Don Siegel, who cut to the chase and gave us truth.

And with all of these, there was my beginning at the USC School of Architecture and my great colleagues in the Art Directors Guild who supported me, and, finally, to Jean Firstenberg who introduced me to the American Film Institute and the opportunity to give back to the next generation of storytellers.

Since I’ve been around here for almost a century, I’ve noted a lot of conflicts, but there was one bright image in this whole life of ours, and that was the arts, and particularly the art of the moviemakers, of the moving image that we all love.

So I have, I have had the good fortune to be a part of this and I thank you all for being there for me. Thank you.” – Robert Boyle

10:37 PM ET

Marion Cotillard joins us back here. She’s still reeling from the win. Quite giddy.

10:41 PM ET

“There was a small technical glitch, so we’ll have to restart the show,” says Stewart before introducing Penelope Cruz. She’s presenting Best Foreign Language Film. And the Oscar goes to Austria’s The Counterfeiters.

“There have been some great Austrian filmmakers working here, thinking of Billy Wilder, Fred Zinnemann, Otto Preminger, most of them had to leave my country because of the Nazis, so it sort of makes sense that the first Austrian movie to win an Oscar is about the Nazis’ crimes. Making this movie, I had a most brilliant cast, a wonderful crew, the best of all families to support me at home, so actually, it was easy for me. Thank you very much.” – Stefan Ruzowitzky

10:45 PM ET

Patrick Dempsey introduces another song from Enchanted, “So Close”.

10:48 PM ET

John Travolta dances out on the stage with one of the women from Enchanted. He’s presenting the Oscar for Original Song. And the Oscar goes to Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova for “Falling Slowly” from Once.

“What are we doing here? This is mad. We made this film two years ago. We shot on two Handycams. It took us three weeks to make. We made it for a hundred grand. We never thought we would come into a room like this and be in front of you people. It’s been an amazing thing. Thanks for taking this film seriously, all of you. It means a lot to us. Thanks to the Academy, thanks to all the people who’ve helped us, they know who they are, we don’t need to say them. This is amazing. Make art. Make art. Thanks.” – Glen Hansard

10:56 PM ET

Stewart brings Marketa Irglova out to make the speech she got cut off from making.

“This is such a big deal, not only for us, but for all other independent musicians and artists that spend most of their time struggling, and this, the fact that we’re standing here tonight, the fact that we’re able to hold this, it’s just to prove no matter how far out your dreams are, it’s possible. And, you know, fair play to those who dare to dream and don’t give up. And this song was written from a perspective of hope, and hope at the end of the day connects us all, no matter how different we are. And so thank you so much, who helped us along way. Thank you.” – Marketa Irglova

10:58 PM ET

“Our next presenter is talented and beautiful…I guess you need that to get ahead in this industry,” says Stewart as he introduces Cameron Diaz. She’s presenting Best Cinematography, a word she temporarily stumbles over. And the Oscar goes to Robert Elswit for There Will Be Blood.

“John Toll won this a number of years ago said that the production designer on his movie, that 50% of it belonged to him. Well, 80% belongs to Jack Fisk and his production crew. And David Crank and Dylan Tichenor. But it really, we all know it really, really belongs to Paul. That this is his imagination and his energy and his extraordinary vision. It sort of enabled us to create the world of “There Will Be Blood.” Thank you, Paul. We’re really all standing on the shoulders, we know this, of Daniel Day-Lewis, who isn’t here right now, but thank you all so much. Thank you. And Helen. Thank you so much.” – Robert Elswit

11:01 PM ET

Two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank introduces this year’s In Memoriam segment.

11:08 PM ET

Amy Adams discusses the importance of scores to a film and introduces the nominees for Original Score. And the Oscar goes to Dario Marianelli for Atonement.

“Well, that was a very long walk, it felt like. I feel like — I’m a very lucky man. Thank you very much, Academy. I’m very lucky because I was part of a fantastic group of people that made a fantastic film. It’s called “movie” because it’s a moving film. I’m really grateful, above all to Joe Wright, the director, to have included me in this fantastic group of gifted people.” – Dario Marianelli

11:11 PM ET

Tom Hanks, two-time winner and a member of the Academy’s Board of Governors. He introduces soldiers based in Iraq, who announce the nominees for Documentary Short Subject. And the Oscar goes to Cynthia Wade and Vanessa Roth for Freeheld. They’re quite emotional over the win.

“And to all our supporters and families who believe that even a 38-minute movie could change minds and lives and our children who remind us about what’s really important.” – Vanessa Roth

Hanks, now introduces the nominees for Documentary Feature. And the Oscar goes to Alex Gibney and Eva Orner for Taxi to the Dark Side.

“Here’s to all doc filmmakers. And, truth is, I think my dear wife Anne was kind of hoping I’d make a romantic comedy, but honestly, after Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, extraordinary rendition that simply wasn’t possible. This is dedicated to two people who are no longer with us, Dilawar, the young Afghan taxi driver, and my father, a Navy interrogator who urged me to make this film because of his fury about what was being done to the rule of law. Let’s hope we can turn this country around, move away from the dark side and back to the light. Thank you very much.” – Alex Gibney

11:23 PM ET

“Our next presenter is either an international movie star or a car dealership,” says Jon as he introduces Harrison Ford. Ford’s dishing out the Original Screenplay award. And the Oscar goes to Diablo Cody for Juno. She breaks down at the end of her speech.

“This is for the writers, and I want to thank all the writers. I especially want to thank my fellow nominees because I worship you guys and I’m learning from you every day, so thank you very much. I want to thank the Academy, I want to thank Fox Searchlight, Mr. Mudd, Mandate, Dan Dubiecki. I want to thank our incredible cast including the superhuman Ellen Page. I want to thank Jason Reitman, who I consider a member of my family, and I’m in awe of his talent as a filmmaker. I want to thank Sarah Self. I want to thank Mason Novick who knew I could do this before I did. And most of all, I want to thank my family for loving me exactly the way I am.” – Diablo Cody

11:29 PM ET

We’re shown a clip package of Best Actor winners. Then the regal Helen Mirren presents the Oscar for Best Actor. And the Oscar goes to Daniel Day-Lewis, his second Oscar win. “That’s the closest I’ve come to a knighthood,” he says to Mirren.

“My deepest thanks to the members of the Academy for whacking me with the handsomest bludgeon in town. I’m looking at this gorgeous thing you’ve given me and I’m thinking back to the first devilish whisper of an idea that came to him and everything since and it seems to me that this sprang like a golden sapling out of the mad, beautiful head of Paul Thomas Anderson.” – Daniel Day-Lewis

11:39 PM ET

Another clip package, this one about Best Director winners. Last year’s winner, directing legend Martin Scorsese, is presenting this year’s award. And the Oscar goes to Joel and Ethan Coen for No Country for Old Men.

“Ethan and I have been making stories with movie cameras since we were kids. In the late ’60s when Ethan was 11 or 12, he got a suit and a briefcase and we went to the Minneapolis International Airport with a Super 8 camera and made a movie about shuttle diplomacy called “Henry Kissinger, Man on the Go.” And honestly, what we do now doesn’t feel that much different from what we were doing then. There are too many people to thank for this. We’re really thrilled to have received it, and we’re very thankful to all of you out there for letting us continue to play in our corner of the sandbox, so thank you very much. “ – Joel Coen

11:44 PM ET

Denzel Washington gets down to business and announces the nominees for Best Picture. And the Oscar goes to Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen for No Country for Old Men. Scott Rudin pays tribute to the original book’s author, Cormac McCarthy, who sits in the audience.

“Ethan and I have been making stories with movie cameras since we were kids. In the late ’60s when Ethan was 11 or 12, he got a suit and a briefcase and we went to the Minneapolis International Airport with a Super 8 camera and made a movie about shuttle diplomacy called “Henry Kissinger, Man on the Go.” And honestly, what we do now doesn’t feel that much different from what we were doing then. There are too many people to thank for this. We’re really thrilled to have received it, and we’re very thankful to all of you out there for letting us continue to play in our corner of the sandbox, so thank you very much. “ – Scott Rudin

11:47 PM ET

The 80th Academy Awards are over. Thanks for joining us. And please remember to check out our red carpet photos and backstage quotes.

Special thanks to Freeman Formalwear for Ian Evans’ tuxedo.

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