“If someone commits an act of violence, they get an Oscar for Best Actor” | Oscars 2023

It was inevitable. The host of the 95th Oscars would address the moment that marked the previous edition, presenter Chris Rock’s on-stage assault by nominee Will Smith, and saved the joke for the end of his opening monologue. In short, he warned: “If anyone commits any act of violence during the ceremony, they will receive an Oscar for Best Actor”. And when in doubt, “do exactly what you did last year,” he told the audience. “Absolutely nothing.”

The comedian and ABC presenter Jimmy Kimmel is the master of ceremonies for these 2023 Oscars, which take place under the shadow of the 2022 Oscars and the explosion that went around the world. At the end of a monologue of about 13 minutes, he there addressed the (ghost of the) elephant in the room.

“We want them to feel safe and, more importantly, we want me to feel safe,” he said onstage under the watchful eyes of this year’s nominees. “We have a strict policy tonight. If anyone commits any act of violence during the ceremony, they will receive an Oscar for Best Actor and give a 19-minute speech. But seriously, if someone commits an act of violence during this ceremony, do exactly what you did last year”, he told the famous audience. “Absolutely nothing. Maybe even give the bully a hug,” he alluded.

It was a Kimmel-style monologue—neither too sharp nor without flame, in which he touched on the main themes of the night. Appearing by parachute (an unwitting evocation of Ice Merchants, for those more expectant about the Portuguese nomination) after a pre-recorded number with Tom Cruise, the North American saluted “the year in which the world left home to see the work that so many strived to do” in theaters. It made palpable the enthusiasm of the Actors branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Hollywood for its newcomer nominees — Jamie Lee Curtis, Michelle Yeoh, Brendan Fraser, Ke Huy Quan (who minutes later would win the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor) — and made fun of two of them.

“Two actors from the film The Boy of the Chipped Stone (1992), [Brendan Fraser e Ke Huy Quan] are nominated for an Oscar,” he noted.

And then he returned to the specter of the pandemic, playing with the limitations it imposed on the industry. “Even poor Steven Spielberg had to make a film about Steven Spielberg”, she said, to the delight of the room regarding The Fabelmans. “Business is booming,” she said of the (partial) recovery of cinema exhibition. But James Cameron didn’t show up for these Oscars, and gossip says it’s because he wasn’t nominated for Best Director, says Kimmel.

“In fact, how come the Academy doesn’t name the guy who made Avatar? Who do you think he is? A woman?”, he said about the fact that the list of five candidate names did not include any professional in the discipline. The list of absentees at the Dolby Theater is joined by Tom Cruise, named as producer for “Top Gun: Maverick — the film that saved cinema. everyone loved it Top Gun: Maverick”, recalls Jimmy Kimmel. “But the two guys who insisted we go to the movies didn’t show up. [neste] movie theater [onde se realiza a cerimónia].”

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