The 2021 Oscars defy norms

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Andrea Hurtado

On April 25, 2021, the 93rd OSCARS took place at the Union Station in Los Angles California. Films nominated for the award for Best Picture include “Nomadland,” “The Father,” “Mank,” “Judas and the Black Mesiah,” “Minari,” “Promising Young Women” and “Sound of Metal.” Films like the animated feature “Soul” by Disney’s Pixar and “Over the Moon” a Netflix original film were nominated for Best Animated Feature. Graphic by Andrea Hurtado

This year marked the 93rd anniversary of the Academy Awards. On Sun., April 25, the 2021 Oscars took place at Union Station in Los Angeles, California.

The ceremony was quite different from past years due to the implemented COVID-19 travel restrictions. Guidelines regarding social distancing resulted in fewer people at the awards ceremony. Those who did make an appearance though were highly encouraged to remain six feet apart. The Nominees were permitted to take off their masks while performing or on camera but were asked to keep them on while seated.

The pandemic also limited the number of interactions at the event. Most of the awards were given out by a single person and did not include the usual conversations between the presenter and the winner.

There were other factors that made this year’s show different from past years. The Academy Awards have been constantly criticized. Accused of choosing winners that lack diversity and for having racist tendencies in general. This year was the very first time that an all-black producing team was nominated for best picture. Creating buzz across the industry, this occurrence helped to change the reputation of this event for the better.

Hairstylists and makeup artists behind the film “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” won. These winners made history as the first Black women to win the award for best makeup and hairstyling.

The Oscars also included women in the nominations, including best director. Chloe
Zhao received the award for best director. Her Film “Nomadland” also took the best picture award.

Furthermore, critics were pleased when Yuh-Jung Youn won the best-supporting actress prize for her work in Lee Isaac Chung’s “Minari.” As she was the first Korean performer to win in an acting category.

Another staggering occurrence was when Anthony Hopkins won the best actor over the beloved Chadwick Boseman. The crowd was definitely disappointed.

Although the awards may not have been a complete success, Netflix and Disney both received multiple wins that night. Netflix took seven trophies and Disney received five including the three wins for “Nomadland” and “Soul.”

The Academy also switched it up when they announced the best picture winner before it announced the recipients of best actor and best actress. The award for best picture is usually the last one presented.

This year’s awards season officially ended with the Oscars. However, it is set to begin again on Feb. 27, 2022. With COVID-19 cases gradually decreasing as a result of the vaccine, there is a possibility that the Oscars will return to their previous routine in the years to come.