LATEST FROM THE OSCARS: ‘Green Book’ wins Oscars best picture award

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Latest on the 91st Academy Awards, which are being presented Sunday night at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles 

“Green Book” is the winner of the Academy Award for best picture.

The film from Universal Pictures stars Mahershala Ali as an African-American concert pianist in the 1960s and Viggo Mortensen as his driver. It won three Oscars on Sunday, including best supporting actor for Ali and best original screenplay.

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Alfonso Cuaron is the winner of the Academy Award for best director.

It’s the second time Cuaron has won an Oscar as best director. He previously won in 2014 for “Gravity.” His film “Roma” is based on his childhood in Mexico and the woman who raised him.

Cuaron has also won two Oscars Sunday night, as well as the best foreign language film for Mexico, its first.

The writer-director dedicated his speech to domestic workers, noting that tens of millions of them work around the world with any rights.

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Olivia Colman is the winner of the best actress Academy Award for “The Favourite.”

It’s the first Oscar in her first nomination for Colman, who plays Queen Anne. She has won four British Academy of Film and Television Arts Awards and two Golden Globes throughout her career.

She beat out Glenn Close, who was considered the front-runner going into Sunday’s Oscars. Colman gave a special shout-out to Close, who she said she has admired all her life.

She thanked “The Favourite” director Yorgos Lanthimos, as well as her co-stars Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz.

Colman also thanked her children, who she said she hoped were watching at home. She says, “This is not going to happen again.”

History has been made by women at the 91st annual Academy Awards.

With the win of Jamie Ray Newman and Guy Nattiv for live action short film, 13 women captured Oscars on Sunday. The Academy says the previous record was set in 2007 and matched in 2015.

Lady Gaga’s win with Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando and Andrew Wyatt put the number at 14.

History-makers were among the winners. Ruth E. Carter and Hannah Beachler became the first African-Americans to win in their respective categories. Carter was awarded for costume design, and Beachler for production design.

— Nekesa Mumbi Moody and Brooke Lefferts at the Oscars.

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“Shallow” from “A Star Is Born” has won the Academy Award for best original song.

“Shallow” was written by Lady Gaga, Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando and Andrew Wyatt. Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper perform it in the film. The song won two Grammy Awards earlier this month.

Gaga effusively thanked the academy and her co-winners, as well her sister and Cooper.

She says it was not about winning, but it was about not giving up and all the times people have to get up after they are knocked down.

The best original score winner was “Black Panther” composer Ludwig Goransson.

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“BlacKkKlansman” is the winner of the best adapted screenplay Academy Award, delivering Spike Lee his first competitive Academy Award.

Lee started out his acceptance speech with some profanity, telling producers not to start the clock on his speech. Winners have been allotted 90 seconds for their speech from the time their names are called.

Lee ready from a two-page letter that tied together history and the years 1619 and 2019, along with his own story.

The writer-director shares the award with Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott.

Lee received the award from Samuel L. Jackson, who has appeared in Lee’s film. Jackson ribbed Lee at the outset of his presentation along with actress Brie Larson, reciting the score of the Knicks game, who notched a rare win.

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“Green Book” has won the Oscar for original screenplay.

The winners are Nick Vallelonga, Brian Currie and Peter Farrelly.

“Green Book” is based on the real-life story of Vallelonga’s father, who drove African-American pianist Don Shirley on a tour through the Deep South in the 1960s and is played by Viggo Mortensen in the film.

“Green Book” is also nominated for best picture, and has already won the best supporting actor Oscar for Mahershala Ali, who played Shirley in the film.

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“First Man” is the winner of the Oscar for visual effects, beating out films about the Avengers and Han Solo.

Paul Lambert, Ian Hunter, Tristan Myles and J.D. Schwalm take the trophy for recreating Neil Armstrong’s moon landing. It’s the second Oscar for Lambert and Hunter, the first for the other two men.

Other nominees in the category were “Avengers: Infinity War,” ”Christopher Robin,” ”Ready Player One,” and “Solo: A Star Wars Story.”

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Even among A-List actors it’s good to be a rock star.

During the commercial break after “Bohemian Rhapsody” won Oscars for sound editing and sound mixing, Rami Malek ran from his front-row seat to congratulate the real-life members of Queen.

Sitting several rows back were guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor when Malik, who played their late lead singer Freddie Mercury, raced over to embrace them.

May, with his unmistakable silver curly hair and sparkly tuxedo, has been sought out by members of the Oscar audience throughout the evening.

He, Taylor and Adam Lambert had opened the Oscar show with a rousing version of Queen’s “We Will Rock You” that had the star-studded audience dancing, clapping, grinning and singing along.

— Andrew Dalton (@andyjamesdalton on Twitter) inside the Dolby Theatre

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Everyone’s favorite neighborhood webslinger is now an Oscar winner — “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” has won the best animated feature Academy Award. It is the first Marvel superhero film to win an Oscar.

The ground-breaking and mind-bending film about multiple spider-heroes from multiple universes gives Sony Pictures its first Oscar for animated feature, a category that has been dominated by Disney for its 18-year existence.

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Mahershala Ali is the winner of the Academy Award for best supporting actor. The win comes for his performance in “Green Book.”

It’s the second Oscar for Ali, who won in the same category in 2017 for “Moonlight.” In “Green Book” he plays Don Shirley, an African-American classical pianist, who tours the Deep South.

He thanked Shirley at the outset of his acceptance speech, saying telling Shirley’s story pushed him as an actor.

Ali dedicated his win to his grandmother, who he said is always pushing him to remain positive.

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Mexico’s “Roma” is the winner of the best foreign language film at the Oscars.

Other films of director Alfonso Cuaron have won Academy Awards, but “Roma” now becomes the first film from Mexico to win the Oscar for best foreign language film. The movie’s dialogue is in Spanish and Mixtec.

It is Cuaron’s second win of the night. Earlier in the ceremony, he won the best cinematography award.

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In a seeming nod to “The Favourite” and its Queen Anne’s affection for bunnies and elaborate dress, Melissa McCarthy had her audience roaring with laughter as she came out to present the award dressed in a huge, white queen’s gown covered with stuffed rabbits.

The laughter continued as McCarthy explained that a costumer’s job is to present authentic dress for actors but “never distract from the story.”

She presented the award with Brian Tyree Henry, who was also decked out in an elaborate period dress.

Laughter resumed as she struggled to open the winner’s envelope with a bunny puppet attached to one of her hands.

The Oscar went to Ruth E. Carter, costumer for “Black Panther.

Carter says: “Marvel may have created the first black superhero but through costume design we turned him into an African king.”

— Andrew Dalton (@andyjamesdalton) and John C. Rogers at the Oscars.

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“Black Panther” has won the Academy Award for production design and made Oscar history for the second time Sunday evening.

Production designer Hannah Beachler is the first African-American winner in the category. Her win came moments after “Black Panther” costume designer Ruth E. Carter became the first black winner in that category.

Beachler wins the Oscar along with set designer Jay R. Hart.

Beachler broke down in tears during her acceptance speech, which started out with her thanking “Black Panther” director Ryan Coogler.

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Ruth E. Carter has won the Academy Award for costume design and made Oscar history.

Carter is the first African-American costume designer to win the category. Carter has previously been nominated for her work on “Amistad” and “Malcolm X.”

She took the stage saying “Wow, wow, I got it.” She said the award has been a long time coming.

Carter thanked Spike Lee, who provided her career start with his 1988 film “School Daze.”

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“Free Solo” has won the best documentary feature Academy Award.

The film follows elite rock-climber Alex Honnold’s attempt to ascend the famed El Capitan rock formation at Yosemite National Park without ropes.

The film was directed and co-produced by the husband-and-wife team of Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin. Vasarhelyi thanked National Geographic, and specifically called them out for hiring female directors. She ended her speech by saying the film is “for everyone who believes in the impossible.”

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Queen launched Sunday’s Oscars with a medley of hits that gave the hostless 91st Academy Awards a distinctly Grammy-like flavor as Hollywood’s most prestigious ceremony sought to prove that it’s still “champion of the world” after last year’s record-low ratings.

Singer Adam Lambert, who has been touring with the band, replaced Freddie Mercury, the subject of the best-picture nominee “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Though the opening number was known, the feel of an Oscars without a host for only the second time in decades had been a mystery.

Following Queen, the motion picture academy ran of montage of the year’s movies before Tina Fey — alongside Amy Poehler and Maya Rudolph — welcomed the Dolby Theatre audience to “the one-millionth Academy Awards.” The trio ran through the kind of jokes, they said, they would have said if they were, in fact, hosting.

They then presented best supporting actress to Regina King for her pained matriarch in Barry Jenkins’ James Baldwin adaptation “If Beale Street Could Talk.” The crowd gave King a standing ovation for her first Oscar.

“To be standing here representing one of the greatest artist of our time, James Baldwin, is a little surreal,” said King. “James Baldwin birthed this baby.”

The run-up to the 91st Academy Awards was a series of missteps and backtracks by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. A new best “popular film” category was in, and then it was out . Kevin Hart was host and then he wasn’t . Some categories were removed from the live broadcast, and then they were back.

But if the script this Oscar season has been constantly rewritten, the film academy is hoping for a Hollywood ending (and much better ratings than the all-time low viewership last year .)

After some unlikely Los Angeles weather — to much local fanfare, it snowed in parts of the city on Thursday — sunny skies greeted red carpet arrivals. Screams of “Spiiiiiike” were heard along the red carpet when “BlacKkKlansman” director Spike Lee arrived to some of the biggest applause of the afternoon.

Glenn Close, wearing a gold-draped dress that she said weighed more than 40 pounds, said she was worried all day that she won’t be able to stop crying. Close, who has been nominated seven times, is expected to win her first Oscar — though she has said she doesn’t want “a pity Oscar.”

Producers Donna Gigliotti and Glenn Weiss have pledged that the show will be speedier this year , even though its initial goal of a three-hour broadcast has faded. Kicking things off will be a performance by Queen, featuring Adam Lambert, to celebrate the best picture-nominee “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

In the academy’s favor is a popular crop of nominees: “Bohemian Rhapsody,” ”A Star Is Born” and, most of all, “Black Panther” have all amassed huge sums in ticket sales. Typically, when there are box-office hits (like “Titanic”), more people watch the Oscars.

But just how many people have seen one of the top nominees and the film favored to win best picture — Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma” — remains unknown. Netflix has declined to give box-office results or steaming viewership. It remains a nominee unlike any other. Should “Roma” — a black-and-white, Spanish and Mixtec language film about a domestic worker in a Mexican family — win, it will be both the first Netflix movie to win best picture and the first foreign language film to do so.

Yet this year’s race has been maddeningly unpredictable , with the usual predictive awards being spread across contenders such as Peter Farrelly’s “Green Book,” a divisive period dramedy about a black pianist (Mahershala Ali) and his white chauffer (Viggo Mortensen); the royal romp “The Favourite; and Ryan Coogler’s Marvel sensation “Black Panther,” which could become the first superhero film ever to win Hollywood’s top award.

Other milestones are possible, too. Though Cuaron is favored for best director, a win for Lee (“BlacKkKlansman”) would make him the first black filmmaker to ever win the award. Lee has said he likes his film’s underdog position as a “dark horse — pun intended.” Lee and his fellow screenwriters are also up for best screenplay, which would give the 61-year-old Lee his first competitive Oscar.

Many also expect Close to finally win one. She’s the front-runner for best actress for her performance in “The Wife,” a film about the overlooked and under-honored spouse of an acclaimed novelist. Though Lady Gaga began the season as the favorite, Close has won a string of awards leading up to the Oscars, including at Saturday’s Independent Spirit Awards where she brought her dog, Pip, along as a date.

One virtual lock: Marvel will win its first Oscar. Though “Black Panther,” up for six awards and could win in a number of categories, “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” is considered the overwhelming favorite for best animated film.

Last year’s Oscars followed the rise of the #MeToo movement, the launch of the gender equality group Time’s Up and the downfall of Harvey Weinstein. A year after best-actress winner Frances McDormand urged the adoption of an “inclusion rider” (a contractual stipulation for the diversity of a film’s cast and crew), numerous production companies, stars and one studio (Warner Bros.) have made similar pledges.

How much gender equality will be discussed at this year’s Oscars is unclear. Many have criticized this year’s selections for lacking a female nominee in the best director category (Greta Gerwig was the fifth ever last year) or a best picture nominee directed by a woman. Recent studies have shown that Hollywood improved on many counts in diversity and gender parity in 2018, but remains far from equitable for women and people of color.

In the last few years, the academy has considerably increased its membership in an effort to diversify its ranks, which have historically been overwhelmingly white and male. In June, the academy invited a record 928 new members.

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For full coverage of the Oscars, visit: https://apnews.com/AcademyAwards

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Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP

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