What you didn't see on TV at the 2023 Oscars: Love for 'Everything,' an MIA 'Mermaid' trailer, the impostor donkey and the biggest star of all
Jimmy Kimmel's jokes. Passionate acceptance speeches. Powerful musical performances. The coronation of Everything Everywhere All at Once. Sunday's 95th Academy Awards broadcast played to a worldwide audience, and clips from the show were shared across social media. Yahoo Entertainment was among the lucky few to have a prized ticket inside the Dolby Theatre for the festivities, and here are some things you didn't see on TV.
Guillermo means business
Jimmy Kimmel's long-suffering TV sidekick, Guillermo Rodriguez, pretaped a public service announcement to make sure would-be winners kept it snappy with their acceptances in a bit that played immediately before the show kicked off. "Keep your speeches conscious," he told nominees before someone off-camera corrected him: "concise."
"And when the prompter says, 'Wrap your speech,'" Rodriguez warned, "Wrap your f***ing speech!"
In case you're wondering, Guillermo was in the audience, but way up in the balcony nose-bleeds.
Everything wins the applause-o-meter
Beginning with Ke Huy Quan and Jamie Lee Curtis's double whammy wins in the supporting-acting categories to kick off the show and ending with Michelle Yeoh's historic Best Actress triumph, the Dolby crowd went absolutely wild for Everything Everywhere All at Once, cheering heartily at every opportunity. In addition to its leading seven wins on Sunday, Everything was easily the fan favorite in the room.
The Little Mermaid trailer was MIA
While viewers at home were subjected to a shameless plug for Disney's new live-action adaptation of the classic cartoon, presented by stars Halle Bailey and Melissa McCarthy, the theatre audience did not get a sneak peek of the trailer. Instead, a "look at future nominees" video and clips from the student Academy Award winners' work played.
The star bar
The lobby bar is always one of the most happening spots at the Oscars and this year didn't disappoint. During the middle portion of the show, several stars decamped to the watering hole to grab some drinks and mingle. Yeoh stopped and gave props to Black Panther star and presenter Danai Gurira. Cate Blanchett enjoyed some alone time, texting on her phone. Seth Rogen, Jenny Slate, Cara Delevingne, Baz Luhrmann and Rian Johnson were also among those who needed some mid-show refreshment.
That wasn't Jenny
One of the night's better bits was when Kimmel brought a donkey onstage an identified as Jenny, the scene-stealing, finger-chewing creature from The Banshees of Inisherin, to applause from the film's nominated star Colin Farrell, who blew a kiss from his perch in the front row. "Not only is Jenny an actor, she's a certified emotional support donkey, or at least that’s what we told the airline to get her on the plane from Ireland. So if you're feeling upset, or you didn't win or you're anxious or you just love mules, feel free to come up and give her a hug." Alas, Banshees writer-director Martin McDonagh admitted backstage that the real Jenny was still back on the Emerald Isle — the Oscars' version was a fraud.
A star among stars
After presenting the Oscar for Best Picture to Everything Everywhere All at Once — and sharing an embrace with his Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom co-star Quan — Harrison Ford was mobbed by colleagues and fans as he left the theater. Banshees nominee Brendan Gleeson was one of those who spent considerable time chatting up Ford. Ford then posed for some good-natured selfies before heading off to the Governors Ball. But even though he's one of the world's biggest movie stars and one of the most popular people at the Academy Awards (where moments earlier he presented Best Picture), Ford still had to show his ticket to gain entry to the afterparty. Sometimes celebrities are just like us.
After the party it’s the afterparty
As is Hollywood tradition, the majority of the ceremony’s attendees made their way up a couple escalator flights to the Governors Ball, where it’s hard to walk a few feet without seeing someone carrying an Oscar statue (mostly, it turns out, by people you wouldn’t recognize, given the number of below the line/craft winners vs. bold-faced names). It’s also where winners have their trophies engraved, leading to a few memorable moments as Everything Everywhere winners Curtis (see below) and Quan both excitedly waved theirs in the air to crowd cheers and photo flashes. The most popular people in the room? Lead acting winners Yeoh (who drew a crowd as she chatted with Disney chief Bob Iger, so don’t be surprised if we see her announced in a Marvel or Star Wars project soon) and The Whale's Brendan Fraser (who had to be shielded from selfie hunters for two minutes while he scarfed down a small cone of fish and chips from caterer Wolfgang Puck).