South Korean black comedy 8220;Parasite 8221; made movie history at the Oscars on Sunday, becoming the first non-English-language film to win the best picture award 8212; Hollywood 8217;s biggest prize of all.
A genre-defying thriller about a poor family infiltrating a wealthy household, 8220;Parasite 8221; won four awards, stunning the pundits who believed the Academy would never crown a subtitled Asian movie.
8220;It 8217;s such a great honor. I feel like I 8217;ll wake up to find it 8217;s all a dream. It all feels very surreal, 8221; a jubilant Bong told journalists backstage, calling the night 8220;crazy. 8221;
8220;Parasite 8221; also won the Oscar for best international feature, and became the first Asian film to scoop best original screenplay.
8220;I thought I was done for the day and ready to relax, 8221; Bong had said upon winning best director honors, before promising to 8220;drink until next morning. 8221;
Bong also paid tribute on stage to his childhood hero and fellow nominee Martin Scorsese, drawing a standing ovation for the veteran director of 8220;The Irishman 8221; 8212; which went home empty-handed.
But a bigger shock was in store as the movie beat frontrunner 8220;1917 8221; to win best picture, the night 8217;s final prize.
8220;It feels like a very opportune moment in history is happening right now, 8221; producer Kwak Sin-ae told an audience of Tinseltown A-listers, who cheered the film 8217;s wins throughout the night at the Dolby Theatre.
Bong predicted that 8220;naturally we will come to a day 8221; when 8220;a foreign language film winning this won 8217;t be much of an issue. 8221;
The movie 8212; filmed to appear like one continuous shot 8212; had swept up trophies at several other galas in the build-up to Sunday.
Joaquin Phoenix won his first Oscar for his turn in supervillain origin story 8220;Joker, 8221; the film that started the night with the most nominations.
In an emotionally charged speech, the actor railed against injustice and 8220;an egocentric worldview 8221; that leads to environmental destruction, before paying tribute to his actor brother River, who died of a drug overdose in 1993.
Renee Zellweger sealed a remarkable comeback by winning best actress for 8220;Judy, 8221; dedicating the award to the Hollywood screen legend she portrayed.
8220;Judy Garland did not receive this honor in her time. I am certain that this moment is an extension of the celebration of her legacy, 8221; she said in accepting her second Oscar.
8220;They told me I only have 45 seconds up here, which is 45 seconds more than the Senate gave John Bolton this week, 8221; he said, referring to President Donald Trump 8217;s recent impeachment trial.
8220;American Factory 8221; 8212; the first film from Barack and Michelle Obama 8217;s production house, about a Rust Belt factory reopened by a Chinese billionaire 8212; won best documentary.
Best adapted screenplay went to Nazi satire 8220;Jojo Rabbit, 8221; about a young boy corrupted by fascism.
Taika Waititi, who is of Maori origin, said he hoped the win would inspire 8220;all the indigenous kids in the world who want to do art and dance and write stories. 8221;
Laura Dern won best supporting actress for her turn as a feisty divorce lawyer in 8220;Marriage Story. 8221;
Record Grammy-winning singer Billie Eilish sang a moving version of 8220;Yesterday 8221; to accompany the 8220;in memoriam 8221; montage for those Hollywood lost this year, which opened with Bryant and closed with Douglas.
Music was a prominent theme throughout the night, which began with a medley addressing a swirling row over the lack of minorities and female directors on the star-studded nominee list.
8220;We celebrate all the women who directed phenomenal films and I 8217;m so proud to stand here as a black, queer artist, 8221; singer Janelle Monae said.
Elton John won for best original song from 8220;Rocketman, 8221; a film about his life.
Rapper Eminem, who won an Oscar in 2003, made a surprise appearance on stage to perform his winning song 8220;Lose Yourself 8221; 8212; which was heavily bleeped out by censors.
Icelandic composer Hildur Gudnadottir won best original score for her haunting music for 8220;Joker. 8221;
8220;To the girls, to the women, to the mothers, to the daughters, who hear the music bubbling within, please speak up, 8221; she said. 8220;We need to hear your voices. 8221;
Natalie Portman, a best actress Oscar winner in 2011 for 8220;Black Swan, 8221; literally wore her feelings 8212; she had their names stitched into the Dior cape she wore to the gala.