While most of the attention was focused on the Best Picture blunder at the conclusion of the 2017 Academy Awards, there were several other important moments that were overlooked.
Asghar Farhadi’s powerful speech
Iranian director Asghar Farhadi won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film for The Salesman – but he wasn’t at the ceremony to accept the award.
In an act of protest against President Donald Trump’s executive order banning people from seven Muslim-majority countries – including Iran –Farhadi refused to attend.
Instead, Iranian-American businesswoman Anousheh Ansari – the first Iranian in space – went in his place and read a powerful statement from the two-time Oscar winner.
“I am sorry that I am not with you tonight. My absence is out of respect for the people of my country and the other Six Nations who have been disrespected by the inhumane laws that bans the entry of immigrants to the US,” it read.
“Dividing the world into the us and our enemies categories creates fear a deceitful justification for aggression and war. These wars prevent democracy and human rights in countries which have themselves been victims of aggression.
“Film makers can turn their cameras to capture shared human qualities and break stereotypes of various nationalities and religions.
“They create empathy between us and others, an empathy that we need today more than ever. Thank you on behalf of Mr Fahardy.”
— Victoria Brownworth (@VABVOX) February 27, 2017
Farhadi previously told The New York Times he would not attend even if he was granted an exception, saying it “now seems that the possibility of this presence is being accompanied by ifs and buts which are in no way acceptable to me even if exceptions were to be made for my trip”.
White Helmets cinematographer refused entry
Farhadi wasn’t the only Oscar winner affected by President Trump’s divisive policies, with two winners of the documentary short winner The White Helmets having been denied entry to the US.
Syrian cinematographer Khaled Khatib and member of the Syrian Civil Defense was scheduled to arrive in the US days before the awards, however was refused entry, according to the Associated Press.
US officials from the Department of Homeland Security said they discovered “derogatory information” regarding Khatib, it reported.
The Syrian Civil Defense said that its leader Raed Saleh was also unable to attend due to “intense air strikes across the country”.
Khatib posted a statement on Twitter on Saturday to clarify why he and Saleh could not attend.
— Khaled Khatib (@995Khaled) February 26, 2017
Gael Garcia Bernal: ‘I’m against any form of wall’
Donald Trump’s name and policies dominated this year’s Oscars’ political flavour, with Mexican actor Gael Garcia Bernal speaking out when presenting the award for the best animated feature film.
Bernal has repeatedly spoken out against Trump’s plan for a border wall between the US and Mexico in the past and the renowned political activist used this opportunity to speak out.
“As a Mexican, as a migrant worker, as a human being, I’m against any form of wall that separates us,” he said.
— ABC News (@ABC) February 27, 2017
Brie Larson’s awkward reunion with Casey Affleck
Brie Larson has had yet another awkward run-in with now Oscar-winning actor Casey Affleck.
Affleck, who was involved in two sexual misconduct and harassment lawsuits in 2010, won the Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Drama last month and backed up his success to claim the Oscar for Actor in a Leading Role.
However, his award just happened to be announced by Larson, a famous women’s rights advocate and star of Room, for which she won the 2016 Oscar for Actress in a Leading Role and which has strong themes dealing with sexual assault and abuse.
Larson was clearly unimpressed having to hand Affleck both his awards, but was applauded on social media for the way she handled the situation.
All award season Brie Larson, who starred in a movie about sexual assault, had to present Casey Affleck all his awards. pic.twitter.com/L2WbQvSJNv
— Marnie (@ChrnclsOfMarnia) February 27, 2017
Nicole Kidman’s awkward clap hands
Although the Best Picture error was painfully awkward, some people were far more disturbed by Best Supporting Actress nominee Nicole Kidman’s apparent inability to clap.
Kidman drew comparisons to a seal, the Grinch and a cast of other colourful characters for her unique style of applause.
oh my god i cannot unsee nicole kidman's horrifying clapping hands pic.twitter.com/gghzQjdrtZ
— mattro boomin (@mmirrored) February 27, 2017