Guillermo del Toro walks to the stage to accept the Academy Award for Best Picture for "The Shape of Water" in Hollywood's Dolby Theater on Sunday (04/03). (Reuters Photo/Lucas Johnson)

'Shape of Water' Takes Best Picture Oscar; Oldman, McDormand Are Best Actors


MARCH 05, 2018

Los Angeles. Fantastical romance "The Shape of Water" won best picture, the film industry’s most prestigious honor, at Sunday’s (04/03) Oscar ceremony.

The Fox Searchlight movie’s Mexican filmmaker, Guillermo del Toro, took home the best director Oscar, dashing the hopes of a rare win by a woman or a black filmmaker.

The movie about a mute cleaning woman who falls in love with a strange river creature had gone into the ceremony with a leading 13 nominations and won a total of four Academy Awards.

As expected, Britain’s Gary Oldman was named best actor for playing World War Two leader Winston Churchill in Warner Bros.' "Darkest Hour," while Frances McDormand’s woman in a fury was a popular best actress winner for Fox Searchlight’s dark comedy "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri."

McDormand capped her acceptance speech by asking all the women in the hall who had been Oscar-nominated to stand as they received a rousing ovation.

Elsewhere, awards were spread around, recognizing first-timers, LGBT movies and films inspired by other cultures.

Oscars host Jimmy Kimmel tackled Hollywood’s sexual misconduct scandal with jokes on a night heavy with nods to activism on issues ranging from LGBT issues and school shootings to sexism and racism.

Gay romance "Call Me by Your Name" won best-adapted screenplay and racial satire "Get Out" won best original screenplay.

"A Fantastic Woman," Chile’s groundbreaking story about a transgender woman, played by transgender actress Daniela Vega, won best foreign language film, and Mexican-inspired "Coco" was named best animated feature.

Sam Rockwell and Allison Janney took home their first Oscars for their supporting roles "Three Billboards" and independent ice-skating movie "I, Tonya," respectively.

Oscar host Jimmy Kimmel led a star-studded celebration of Hollywood’s best in honoring the campaign against sexual misconduct and the breakthrough of racial and ethnic diversity beginning to transform the movie business.

In his opening monologue, Kimmel skewered the class of powerful men who prayed on women with a sight gag focused on a larger-than-life Oscar statue on stage, noting the male sculpture’s anatomically simplified lack of genitalia.

"He is literally a statue of limitations. And that’s the kind of man we need more of in this town," he said, drawing uproarious laughter from the Dolby Theater’s audience of film luminaries.

The joke helped break the looming tension from a torrent of sexual misconduct allegations that have roiled the film industry since legions of mostly female victims broke their silence in recent months to shed light on long-cloaked abuses of power and gender bias.

Kimmel also called out Harvey Weinstein, the one-time Hollywood titan whose fall from grace helped give rise to the #MeToo social media movement, which galvanized accusers of powerful men in media, politics and other walks of American life, and the Time’s Up campaign for greater equality.
Weinstein, who has denied ever having nonconsensual sex with anyone, was expelled last year from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences after dozens of women accused him of a range of sexual misbehavior, including rape.

But the centerpiece for Oscar recognition for the issue came midway through the show, as three actresses who were among Weinstein’s accusers – Annabella Sciorra, Ashley Judd and Salma Hayek – introduced a montage of film clips and celebrity interviews paying tribute to diversity of all kinds.

The segment saluted breakthroughs of women and people of color behind and in front of the camera, citing the critical and commercial success of such works as the blockbuster Marvel superhero film "Black Panther," featuring a predominantly African-American cast.

HBO Asia reruns for the 90th Academy Awards will take place tonight at 6 p.m, Wednesday at 8 p.m. Sunday at 3.20 p.m. and Friday at 3 p.m. Jakarta time.