Despite controversies shadowing Green Book’s race to the Oscars, it still won the best picture at this year’s Academy Awards. The film is a period drama about race relations in the 1960s, inspired by the true story of a celebrated pianist’s friendship with his driver. As shown in the movie, “green book” was a guide that told black motorists of hotels that would accept them.
Even though the movie faced plenty of criticism and controversies, it seems the chemistry between Mahershala Ali and Viggo Mortensen was enough to convince Academy voters to forego the criticism and realize that this is indeed an academy award worthy film. Moreover, it also won best original screenplay and best actor in a supporting role for Mahershala Ali, being his second win for best supporting actor in three years. He won his first Oscar for Moonlight back in 2017, becoming now the second African-American actor with multiple Oscars, joining the ranks of Denzel Washington.
The film took home a total of three trophies, including best picture – which has been expected to go to Netflix’s Roma. Also surpassing the other movies nominated, such as Black Panther, A Star is Born, and many others. However, Black Panther also won several technical awards, as did Bohemian Rhapsody – the Queen and Freddie Mercury biopic, including Rami Malek’s first win for best actor, who gave a moving speech:
“To anyone struggling and trying to discover their voice – listen, we made a film about a gay man, an immigrant, who lived his life unapologetically himself. And the fact I’m celebrating him and his story with you tonight is proof that we’re longing for stories like this.”
Among the other notable winners, the award for best actress went to British actress Olivia Colman for her performance in The Favorite. Regina King won her first best supporting actress Oscar nomination for If Beale Street Could Talk. While Spike Lee won his first ever competitive Oscar for best adapted screenplay for BlacKkKlansman, already having an honorary Oscar received back in 2016.
Lacking a host, first time ever in 30 years, the evening was filled with music and comedy bits, including the duo from A Star is Born made up of Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga, that later won the academy award for best song.