The Oscars 2022 saw Will Smith punch Chris Rock, Jamie Lee Curtis present with a tiny dog, and Beyoncé doing what Beyoncé does best.
Undoubtedly the most talked-about moment of the night came when Will Smith struck Chris Rock for making a poor-taste joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith’s alopecia.
“Jada, I love you. GI Jane 2, can’t wait to see you,” the controversial comic said. Smith then walked out from the audience on to the stage and hit the comic, before shouting: “Keep my wife’s name out your f***ing mouth.”
Smith apologised when he returned to stage to accept the Oscar for Best Actor (for playing the father of Venus and Serena Williams in King Richard).
“Art imitates life. I look like the crazy father, just like they said about Richard Williams. But love will make you do crazy things,” he said.
He shared some advice he’d received from Denzel Washington just moments before: “At your highest moment, be careful that’s when the devil comes for you.”
Lupita Nyong’o and Nicole Kidman become memes
Let’s just say both were shocked by what went down on stage.
— matt murdocks gf ♡ (@omgmattmurdock) March 28, 2022
— Pop Crave (@PopCrave) March 28, 2022
Regina Hall, Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes stand for LGBT+ rights
The comedians were the Oscars’ first all-female presenting line-up, and they did not disspaoint.
While Hall said she was excited to be representing “Black women who are standing proud”, and Sykes those who are also “living out loud”, Schumer was there for the “unbearable white women who call the cops when you get a little too loud”.
Sykes lived up to her promise, taking a stand for Florida’s LGBT+ community.
“For you people in Florida, we’re going to have a gay night. Gay, gay, gay!”
DeSantis just won his election with this. Maybe the 2024 Presidency too. pic.twitter.com/B979VQlZf2
— Justin Hart (@justin_hart) March 28, 2022
Ariana DeBose makes history
DeBose won Best Support Actress for her part in West Side Story, becoming the first queer woman of colour ever to win an Oscar.
Accepting the award, she said: “Imagine this little girl in the back seat of a white Ford Focus. Look into her eyes, you see an openly queer woman of color and Latina who found her life and strength in art.
“That’s what I believe we are here to celebrate. So to anybody who has ever questioned your identity, ever, ever, ever, — or you find yourself living in the gray spaces — I promise you this: There is indeed a place for us.”
“To anybody who has ever questioned your identity or you find yourself living in the gray spaces…I promise you this: there is indeed a place for us,” Ariana DeBose says during her #Oscars acceptance speech.https://t.co/YILAwH0cbk pic.twitter.com/UbSXyJZ3EM
— Variety (@Variety) March 28, 2022
Jamie Lee Curtis’ tiny dog
Curtis paid tribute to Betty White’s animal activism during the Oscars’ In Memoriam segment.
She bought a tiny dog on stage, telling the audience that White “was not only a Golden Girl, she was a legend who brightened every room she walked in and brought a smile to the faces of all who watched her on the screen. And day in and day out for almost a century, she was a woman who cared so much for not just her two-legged friends but for animals just like this.
“So the greatest gift you could give Betty White is to open your heart and your home and adopt a rescue dog just like Mac-N-Cheese from Paw Works. So thank you, Betty, thank you for being a friend to us all.”
— Empire Magazine (@empiremagazine) March 28, 2022
Beyoncé’s Oscars performance
Amid the shock and unpredictability of the Oscars, Beyoncé was a reassuring presence.
She opened the ceremony with a performance of “Be Alive”, her song from King Richard, which later lost of for Best Original Song.
Beyoncé performed the track from a tennis court in Compton, where Venus and Serena Richards were coached by their father in their youth.