|94th Academy Awards|
|Date||March 27, 2022|
|Site||Dolby Theatre |
Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Produced by||Will Packer |
|Directed by||Glenn Weiss|
|Most awards||Dune (6)|
|Most nominations||The Power of the Dog (12)|
|TV in the United States|
|Duration||3 hours, 40 minutes|
The 94th Academy Awards ceremony, presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), honored the best films released between March 1 and December 31, 2021, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on March 27, 2022, by presenting Academy Awards to the winners. The ceremony was hosted by Regina Hall, Amy Schumer, and Wanda Sykes. It was the first ceremony since the 83rd Academy Awards in 2011 to feature multiple hosts.
CODA won three awards, including Best Picture, and was the first film distributed by an internet streaming service to receive that award. Dune won a leading six awards, while The Eyes of Tammy Faye won two awards. The Power of the Dog, King Richard, West Side Story, Drive My Car, Encanto, Belfast, No Time to Die, Cruella, The Long Goodbye, The Queen of Basketball, Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised), and The Windshield Wiper won one award each.
The ceremony received overwhelmingly negative reviews from critics and was watched by 16.62 million viewers, a 63% increase in viewership from the previous year's awards. However, the ceremony was still the second-lowest viewed overall. The ceremony also drew several controversies, most notably an incident in which actor Will Smith walked onstage, and slapped actor and comedian Chris Rock on the face after Rock made a joke about Smith's wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. The incident largely overshadowed the rest of the ceremony and prompted widespread outrage, commentary, and debate.
Due to the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on cinema, the modified eligibility criteria from the 93rd Academy Awards (such as the inclusion of direct-to-digital releases and providing flexibility for eligible theatrical runs in cities besides Los Angeles for those films) remained in force. Because the 93rd Academy Awards had allowed a two-month extension of eligibility through the end of February 2021, only films released between March 1 and December 31, 2021, were eligible to compete in the 94th Academy Awards.
Voting for nominations concluded on February 1, 2022. The nominations were announced on February 8, 2022, by Tracee Ellis Ross and Leslie Jordan.
In April 2020, the Academy announced that the Best Picture category at the 94th Academy Awards would have 10 nominees; since the 84th Academy Awards, between five and ten films have been nominated for Best Picture, based on the outcome of the ballot process. The minimum amount of original music required for eligibility in Best Original Score was reduced from 60% to 35%. Submissions for Best Original Song were capped at five songs per film. The nomination process for Best Sound introduced a preliminary round with 10 nominees. In addition, the shortlists expanded from 10 to 15 films in the categories of Best Animated Short Film, Best Documentary Short Subject, and Best Live Action Short Film.
As part of environmental initiatives, the distribution of screeners and other physical goods is no longer allowed; digital equivalents and streaming must now be used.
The Power of the Dog became the first film directed by a woman to receive more than ten nominations while its director, Jane Campion, became the first woman to receive more than one Academy Award nomination for Best Director. CODA became the first film from Apple Original Films, as well as the first starring a predominantly deaf cast in leading roles, to be nominated for Best Picture; among the cast, Troy Kotsur became the first deaf male actor to receive a nomination for an acting award (in the category of Best Supporting Actor) and the second deaf actor overall to receive an acting nomination, after CODA co-star Marlee Matlin, who won Best Actress for Children of a Lesser God (1986).
For international feature films, Drive My Car became the first Japanese film to be nominated for Best Picture while its director, Ryusuke Hamaguchi, became the third Japanese director to be nominated for Best Director. Flee became the first film to be nominated in the categories of Best Animated Feature Film, Best Documentary Feature and Best International Feature Film, simultaneously.
Kenneth Branagh became the first individual to have been nominated in a total of seven different categories with his nominations in the Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay categories for Belfast. At the age of 87, Judi Dench became the second oldest nominee (in the category of Best Supporting Actress) for her performance in the aforementioned film, after Gloria Stuart was nominated for the same category for her performance in Titanic (1997). Steven Spielberg's West Side Story became the second adaptation of the same source material for a previous Best Picture winner to be nominated for the same award, after 1962's Mutiny on the Bounty. With his Best Picture nomination, Spielberg became the most nominated individual in the category with eleven films. Spielberg's Best Director nomination also makes him the first director to be nominated in that category in six consecutive decades. For his work on West Side Story, Paul Tazewell became the first African American male costume designer to be nominated for Best Costume Design. Paul Thomas Anderson's Licorice Pizza became MGM's first fully produced, marketed, and distributed film to be nominated for Best Picture in 33 years, after 1988's Best Picture winner Rain Man.
Having starred in Don't Look Up and Nightmare Alley, Cate Blanchett became the first female actor in history to have credited roles in nine Best Picture nominees, surpassing Olivia de Havilland's record of eight. Olivia Colman and Jessie Buckley's acting nominations for The Lost Daughter mark only the third time that two individuals have been nominated for portraying the same character in the same film. The nominations of Kristen Stewart (Spencer) and Ariana DeBose (West Side Story) mark the first time that two openly LGBT actors have been nominated in the same year. This also marks the first time in which two couples were nominated in the same year, namely married couple Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem (Cruz for Parallel Mothers; Bardem for Being the Ricardos), as well as engaged couple Kirsten Dunst and Jesse Plemons (both for The Power of the Dog).
This ceremony marked the first time in the preferential era and second time since 2006 that all of the nominees for Best Actress did not star in one of the films nominated for Best Picture. It also marked the first time in the award's history where none of the Best Actress nominees were nominated for the same category at the 75th British Academy Film Awards.
CODA won all three awards for which it was nominated, including Best Picture, becoming the first film distributed by a streaming service (Apple TV+), the first Sundance Film Festival premiere, and the first film featuring predominantly deaf actors in leading roles to win Best Picture. It was the first Best Picture winner with three or fewer nominations since Grand Hotel (1932), the first film to win without having been nominated for Best Director and Best Film Editing since Grand Hotel, the first film to win after skipping all fall film festivals since The Departed (2006), and the first film to win as a remake of a non-English language film since The Departed. Sian Heder, the film's writer-director, became the first woman to win Best Adapted Screenplay by herself since Emma Thompson for Sense and Sensibility in 1996. Kotsur became the first male deaf actor to win an Oscar and only second deaf actor ever after his co-star Matlin.
Campion became the third woman to win Best Director (winning for The Power of the Dog) and the second consecutive after Chloé Zhao in 2021, as well as the first woman to win Oscars for both directing and screenwriting. The Power of the Dog became the first film to win Best Director with no other awards since The Graduate in 1968, and it marked the first time since the 91st Academy Awards in 2019 that Best Picture and Best Director were awarded to different films. It also became the latest film after The Color Purple (1985) to have lost out on a record potential eleven other awards, with the former being nominated for eleven and winning none. Will Smith became the fifth African-American male to win Best Actor for his performance in King Richard. DeBose became the first Afro-Latina actress and openly queer actor of color to win an acting award (Best Supporting Actress) for her performance in West Side Story. This is also the first time the award has been given to actresses who played the same part: Anita; Rita Moreno won for her performance as Anita in the 1961 adaptation of the stage musical. The two also became the third pair of actors to win for portraying the same character in two different films and the first to win the same category.[a]
Additionally, Billie Eilish, who received Best Original Song[b] for the title theme song from No Time to Die, became the first person born in the 21st century ever to win an Oscar and the second to be nominated since Quvenzhané Wallis became the first to be nominated (Best Actress for Beasts of the Southern Wild) in 2013. No Time to Die also became the third consecutive James Bond film to win Best Original Song, after Skyfall (2012) and Spectre (2015).
Winners are listed first, highlighted in boldface.
The Academy held its 12th annual Governors Awards ceremony on March 25, 2022, during which the following awards were presented:
|12||The Power of the Dog|
|West Side Story|
|4||Don't Look Up|
|Drive My Car|
|3||Being the Ricardos|
|The Lost Daughter|
|No Time to Die|
|The Tragedy of Macbeth|
|The Eyes of Tammy Faye|
|Tick, Tick... Boom!|
|The Worst Person in the World|
The ceremony was held on March 27, 2022, at the Dolby Theatre; an estimated 2,500 attendees were present for the ceremony. The date was chosen as not to clash with the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing (which ran from February 4–20, 2022), and Super Bowl LVI (which was hosted in the Los Angeles area on February 13, 2022). Sponsors for the event included pharmaceutical companies BioNTech and Pfizer.
In October 2021, film producer Will Packer was hired to produce the ceremony. Shayla Cowan, the chief of staff of his production companies, was named co-producer. On January 11, 2022, President of Hulu Originals and ABC Entertainment Craig Erwich confirmed that the ceremony would have an assigned host for the first time since 2018. Potential hosts that were considered included Pete Davidson, Tina Fey, Selena Gomez, Steve Martin, Martin Short, Amy Poehler, and Maya Rudolph. On February 11, it was announced that the ceremony will be structured in three acts, with a different host presiding over each act, as a "strategy to lure a broader audience and share the burden of guiding the telecast". On February 14, Regina Hall, Amy Schumer, and Wanda Sykes were announced as the three hosts. Vanessa Hudgens, Terrence J, Sofia Carson, and fashion designer Brandon Maxwell hosted the red carpet pre-show.
Musician Adam Blackstone, who served as music director for the Super Bowl LVI halftime show, served as music director. He was joined by Taryn Hurd as talent producer, David Korins as production designer, Robert Dickinson as lighting designer, and Rob Paine as supervising producer. Dave Boone, Dana Eagle, Mitch Marchand, Suli McCullough, Agathe Panaretos, Danielle Schneider, and Chuck Sklar served as writers, with Jon Macks as head writer.
The ceremony featured an in-house band consisting of Blackstone, Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker, singer and percussionist Sheila E. and pianist Robert Glasper, who were joined by a full symphonic orchestra. DJ D-Nice and The Samples performed at the ceremony, with the former confirmed to perform at the Governors Ball.
The ceremony featured tributes to the 60th anniversary of the James Bond franchise and the 50th anniversary of 1972 Best Picture winner The Godfather. In order to draw in younger viewers, the cast of Encanto (Adassa, Stephanie Beatriz, Mauro Castillo, Carolina Gaitán, and Diane Guerrero) appeared, along with Megan Thee Stallion, Becky G and Luis Fonsi for the first live performance of "We Don't Talk About Bruno" to capitalize on its viral success, despite not being submitted and nominated for Best Original Song. It was expected to be the musical highlight and biggest production number of the ceremony, according to Packer, as he gave the reason why it will be showcased on the telecast: "If there is a song that unites people this year (it is this one), and that is kind of the epitome to me of what movies can do, because people of all stripes, ethnicities, ages, color, background, around the world (are singing it) ad nauseum, [sic] and we are going to help them out so they sing it a little bit more. Our apologies to the parents." The song's lyrics were slightly altered to be about the Oscars, rather than "about Bruno" as originally written, including an original verse by rapper Megan Thee Stallion.
For the second year in a row, broadcasters in mainland China and Hong Kong did not air the Oscars for its viewers. No immediate explanation has been given.
The ceremony offered accommodations for the deaf and the visually impaired. For the second ceremony in a row, the telecast offered audio description for the visually impaired. For the first time, the AMPAS streamed a feed of sign language interpretation for the ceremony on YouTube as a second screen component of the telecast; in regards to this and other accessibility aspects of the ceremony (including the ramp to the stage), the Academy's vice president of Impact and Operations Jeanell English stated that the Academy "can't accomplish inclusion without prioritizing accessibility", and that "we're not going to get everything right. We know that, but we ask, how can we continue to improve? Let's keep pushing the boundaries and challenging and trying to create more access where we can."
Unlike the previous year's ceremony, which was downsized and held at a different venue with strict health and safety protocol due to COVID-19, the 94th Academy Awards returned to the Dolby Theatre with modified protocols; on February 17, 2022, The New York Times reported that the Academy would require attending nominees and guests to show proof of vaccination or a valid medical exemption, and two negative PCR tests, in order to attend. Presenters and performers underwent "rigorous testing", but were not required to be vaccinated. Audience members in sections closest to the stage were seated further apart (with the floor of the auditorium configured using a mix of tables and seats), but were not required to wear face masks. Masks were required for attendees in the mezzanine. The Academy stated that this was part of a goal, alongside the film industry, to enact return-to-work standards in Los Angeles County in the wake of the Omicron widespread surge.
The vaccine requirement was in line with public health orders enforced by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LAC DPH), which mandated proof of vaccination for the attendees of any indoor event with more than 1,000 attendees ("Indoor Mega Event"). While the city of Los Angeles required masks at indoor events with more than 500 attendees, the city has historically exempted film and television productions (including televised awards shows) from being considered an indoor event for the purposes of public health orders, due to the health and safety protocols that have been agreed upon and adopted by the industry.
To tie in with the ceremony's theme of "Movie Lovers Unite", the Academy teamed up with Twitter to host an "Oscars Fan Favorite" contest, where Twitter users could vote for their favorite film of the year and their favorite movie moment, the two with the most votes being recognized during the telecast. Fans could vote for their favorite films using the hashtags #OscarsFanFavorite and #OscarsCheerMoment, with up to 20 submissions each day per user. The contest began on February 14, 2022, and ended on March 3, 2022, with the five finalists for Oscars Cheer Moment being announced on February 24, 2022.
The contest drew a predominantly negative reaction, with some critics viewing it as a variation of the "Popular Film" category proposed for the 91st ceremony, and others viewing it as a forced and rigged consolation prize to recognize Spider-Man: No Way Home and its box office performance, after late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel and filmmaker Kevin Smith criticized the Academy of snubbing the film for a Best Picture nomination. The hosts of ABC's The View, Joy Behar, Whoopi Goldberg, Sara Haines and Ana Navarro, were among those who were critical of the contest, with Behar saying: "We already have the People's Choice Awards, where everybody weighs in on it, people on Twitter and what have you. I think it's enough."
Mark Donaldson of Screen Rant also criticized the decision, writing: "The unintended consequence of this decision to introduce a populist category is that it widens the gulf between Academy voters and moviegoers. For example, aside from featuring Benedict Cumberbatch in both films, Power of the Dog is miles away from No Way Home. That's how it should be, there should be room for arthouse and commercial cinema. However, Spider-Man: No Way Home winning Fan Favorite and Cumberbatch's new film winning Best Picture would further entrench the divide between art and commerce within film culture."
Ultimately, the following films were announced as the Oscars Fan Favorite nominees:
On February 24, 2022, the contest announced the five finalists for Oscars Cheer Moment, the following being presented in the order they were ranked, as announced during the ceremony:
According to TheWrap, the most active voters in the Twitter polls were autonomous web programs.
The presentations and acceptance of eight awards (Best Animated Short Film, Best Documentary Short Subject, Best Film Editing, Best Live Action Short Film, Best Makeup and Hairstyling, Best Original Score, Best Production Design, and Best Sound) were not broadcast live but instead pre-taped an hour before the start of the telecast, in an attempt to "allow more time for comedy, film clips and musical numbers," and shorten the ceremony; a similar move had been attempted for the 91st Academy Awards in 2019 but had been reversed after being negatively received.
The Hollywood Reporter wrote that the decision was made under pressure from ABC executives, who had initially demanded that 12 of the 23 categories be moved off the live broadcast, under the possible penalty of not airing the ceremony at all if cuts were not made; a member of the Academy's governing committee claimed that the subsequent agreement to remove eight categories was then reached after negotiations. Josh Brolin and Jason Momoa had entered negotiations to present the eight awards off the air; the two ultimately presented together. Despite these efforts, the final program ran 3 hours and 42 minutes, the longest show since 2018.
As with the previous ceremony, most of the films nominated for Best Picture performed poorly at the box office in part because of the pandemic, with the exception of Dune, which grossed over $400.7 million worldwide, while West Side Story is the second-highest-grossing with $76 million. CODA, which won Best Picture, grossed $1.1 million internationally with no reported U.S. box office prior to the Oscar nomination announcements, making it one of the lowest-grossing films to win the award in Oscars history; the film's low gross was because of its release primarily through the streaming service Apple TV+ rather than in theaters. According to a Morning Consult survey released on March 22, 2022, Dune and West Side Story had the most awareness and popularity with audiences out of all ten of the nominated films, with 66% of 45,000 respondents saying they heard of West Side Story while 54% said the same about Dune. The survey also revealed that 22% of the same respondents have seen the entirety of Don't Look Up, followed by 19% who saw Dune, 16% who saw West Side Story and 4% who saw Belfast and CODA, respectively. By March 20, 2022, according to Samba TV through Deadline Hollywood, Nightmare Alley had been streamed on HBO Max and Hulu in a combined 3.1 million households in the United States, including 2.1 million since the Oscar nomination announcements on February 8, the highest total of any Best Picture nominee, followed by West Side Story on Disney+ and HBO Max in a combined 1.9 million households. In the three days following its Best Picture win, CODA saw a 300% increase in views from the previous week and was the most-streamed program on Apple TV+.
The telecast received overwhelming negative reviews, with criticism directed at the show's pacing and focus; there was also agreement from both positive and negative reviews that coverage of the Will Smith–Chris Rock slapping incident would overwhelm discussion of the ceremony itself. On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 19% of 31 reviews were judged to be positive, with an average rating of 5.5/10. The critics' consensus reads: "A shocking outburst overshadows a sour Oscar night marred by ill-conceived gimmicks and time-saving changes that fail to tighten up another bloated ceremony."
Richard Brody of The New Yorker called the show "a disaster", and wrote that "the televised broadcast, with its self-defeating efforts to reach audiences that aren't, in the first place, interested in the kinds of movies that the Academy chooses to honor [...] is doing the world of movies, the image of Hollywood, and the artists it celebrates no good whatsoever". In The New York Times, James Poniewozik praised some of the show's musical performances, but said that in an effort "to offer something for every market quadrant", the show was a "grab-bag frenzy". Kelly Lawler of USA Today called the show "sloppily managed and poorly paced, with bad comedy in all the wrong places and a nearly four-hour running time [...] a careening roller coaster with nowhere to go but down".
Conversely, Lorraine Ali of the Los Angeles Times praised the ceremony as "much tighter and brighter than in recent years, thanks in large part to powerful music numbers, a diverse mixture of guests, and the bitingly funny trio of hosts".
ABC's broadcast of the ceremony drew an average of 16.62 million viewers and scored a 3.8 Nielsen rating among viewers aged 18 to 49. This represented a 63% increase in viewership from the previous year's ceremony, the least-watched since television viewership of the show began measurement, but still had the second-lowest ratings of any Oscars telecast.
In July 2022, the ceremony received three nominations at the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards, including Outstanding Variety Special (Live).
On March 20, 2022, Rachel Zegler, who starred as María in Best Picture nominee West Side Story, revealed she was not invited to attend the ceremony, writing in an Instagram post: "I have tried it all but it doesn't seem to be happening ... I will root for West Side Story from my couch and be proud of the work we so tirelessly did 3 years ago. I hope some last minute miracle occurs and I can celebrate with our film in person ... I'm disappointed, too. But that's okay. So proud of our movie." Entertainment Weekly noted that the studios behind the nominated films are the ones who determine the ticket allotments for those involved with the Best Picture nominees. The following day, the Academy invited her to be a presenter, with her shooting schedule for Disney's live-action Snow White remake being reconfigured to allow her to travel from London to the ceremony in Los Angeles. She would later make a joke about the controversy during her presentation, which received laughter from the audience.
The award for Best Animated Feature was presented by three actresses who portrayed Disney princess characters in live-action remakes of their respective animated films: Lily James (Cinderella), Naomi Scott (Aladdin), and Halle Bailey (The Little Mermaid). While introducing the category, Bailey stated that animated films are "formative experiences" for kids who watch them, as James put it, "over and over". Scott added: "I see some parents who know exactly what we're talking about." The remarks were roundly criticized by those working in the animation industry as perpetuating the stigma that animated works are strictly for children, especially since the industry was credited with sustaining the flow of Hollywood content and revenue during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Phil Lord, co-producer of one of the nominated films, The Mitchells vs. the Machines, tweeted that it was "Super cool to position animation as something that kids watch and adults have to endure". The film's official social media accounts responded to the joke with an image reading: "Animation IS cinema". A week later, Lord and his producing partner Chris Miller wrote a guest column in Variety criticizing the Academy for the joke and how Hollywood has been treating animation writing that "no one set out to diminish animated films, but it's high time we set out to elevate them". They also suggested to the Academy that the category should be presented by a filmmaker who respects the art of animation as cinema. Adding to the controversy was the fact that the award for Best Animated Short Film, the nominees for which were mostly made up of adult animation, was one of the eight aforementioned categories that were not presented during the live broadcast.
These comments came as #NewDeal4Animation, a movement of animation workers demanding higher pay and better employment conditions, was picking up momentum during negotiations for a new contract between The Animation Guild, IATSE Local 839 and studios; the presentation was used to rally the movement.
The elimination of categories from the live broadcast again was met with backlash, much like the similar, abandoned proposal for the 91st Academy Awards in 2019. Shortly after the decision was announced, actor and comedian Patton Oswalt called the move "dumb and disrespectful" to the winners of the affected categories and Variety editor Jazz Tangcay called it an "insult to the art of filmmaking".
Several prominent figures in the entertainment industry voiced opposition. Steven Spielberg said: "I feel that at the Academy Awards, there is no above the line, there is no below the line. All of us are on the same line bringing the best of us to tell the best stories we possibly can. And that means for me we should all have a seat at the supper table together live at 5." Guillermo del Toro spoke at the 5th Hollywood Critics Association Film Awards, saying: "Many of you that have a voice and that can say it should say, 'We should not do that,' ... We shouldn't do it this year. We shouldn't do it ever, but this year we are together in this."
Opposing the Academy's decision, more than 70 prominent film professionals—including del Toro, James Cameron, Jane Campion, Denis Villeneuve, and John Williams—issued a letter urging the Academy to reverse the plan, which they argue would relegate some nominees to "the status of second-class citizens." Addressed to Academy President David Rubin, the letter claims that the decision to hand out five below-the-line awards and the three short film awards in the hour before the Oscars telecast would do "irreparable damage" to the Oscars' reputation by "demeaning the very crafts that, in their most outstanding expressions, make the art of filmmaking worthy of celebration". Best Actress nominee (and eventual winner) Jessica Chastain announced her decision to skip the red carpet and other press in order to ensure that she was in the theater during the Makeup and Hairstyling category to support the team who worked with her on The Eyes of Tammy Faye, stating, "The most important thing for me is to honor the incredible artisans who work in our industry."
The Academy's decision to remove several award presentations from the live broadcast prompted some AMPAS members – including sound engineer Tom Fleischman and production sound mixer Peter Kurland – to resign from the organization in protest of the new policy.
During an appearance on The Drew Barrymore Show on March 21, 2022, Schumer said she wanted part of the ceremony to bring attention to the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine by inviting Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to address the audience and viewers either by satellite or in pre-taped form, to make the ceremony more politically serious. She said, "I think there is definitely pressure in one way to be like, 'This is a vacation, let people forget, we just want to have this night'... [but] we have so many eyes and ears on this show." On March 26, the day before the ceremony, Sean Penn vowed to call for a boycott of the ceremony and "smelt his Oscars publicly" if the Academy did not invite Zelenskyy to attend virtually. He stated, "There is nothing greater that the Academy Awards could do than to give him that opportunity to talk to all of us," and added that "if the Academy has elected not to do it ... [then] that decision will have been the most obscene moment in all of Hollywood history."
A moment of silence was held during the ceremony out of respect for the people of Ukraine.
Main article: Will Smith–Chris Rock slapping incident
During the presentation for Best Documentary Feature, actor Will Smith walked onstage and slapped presenter and comedian Chris Rock over a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith: "Jada, I love you. G.I. Jane 2. Can't wait to see it." The joke referenced the 1997 film G.I. Jane, in which Demi Moore's character wears her hair in a buzz cut. Pinkett Smith was diagnosed with alopecia in 2018 and shaved her head due to the condition. The joke was ad-libbed by Rock and not part of his scripted remarks. After initially laughing, Smith rose from his seat near the stage, walked up to Rock, slapped him, and returned to his seat. Rock said: "Will Smith just smacked the shit out of me!" After Smith returned to his seat, he shouted to Rock, twice: "Keep my wife's name out your fucking mouth!" Rock replied, "I'm going to, okay?" to Smith and joked that it was the "greatest night in the history of television" before presenting the award. Commentators noted that although Rock appeared to fumble his subsequent lines, he maintained his composure in the midst of chaos.
An Academy librarian said the altercation was likely the first incident of on-stage violence in Academy Awards history. In the United States, broadcaster ABC muted the audio due to federal broadcast profanity regulations; however, many international broadcasters use a clear feed and did not censor it depending on local mores, and uncensored recordings of the event went viral on social media. About forty minutes later, Smith won the award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Richard Williams in King Richard. He focused his speech on his need to protect those around him and apologized to the Academy and to the other nominees, but not to Rock. He received a standing ovation. The Economist described his acceptance speech, in which he appealed to God calling on him to do "crazy things" in the name of love, as "dangerous, self-serving cant"; Rock did not file a police report.
Many celebrities called the incident the "ugliest moment" in the history of the Oscars. The show's production team decided not to remove Smith from the theater, citing time constraints and the desire to avoid another disruption. The day after the ceremony, the Academy released a statement condemning Smith's actions and announced an internal review. The same day, Smith formally apologized to Rock, the Academy, the Williams family, and the cast and crew of King Richard in Instagram and Facebook posts; he described his behavior as "unacceptable and inexcusable". In response to this incident, Smith announced his resignation from the Academy on April 1, 2022. On April 8, 2022, the Board of Governors decided that Smith "shall not be permitted to attend any Academy events or programs, in person or virtually, including but not limited to the Academy Awards" for a decade, with the ban going into effect that day.
The following presented awards and performed musical numbers.
|Introduced the performance of "Be Alive"|
|DJ Khaled||Introduced the hosts|
|Presented the award for Best Supporting Actress|
|Presented the following awards filmed before the telecast:|
Best Animated Short Film
Best Documentary Short Subject
Best Film Editing
Best Live Action Short Film
Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Best Original Score
Best Production Design
|Presented the award for Best Cinematography|
Reunited for the 30th anniversary of White Men Can't Jump
|Presented the award for Best Visual Effects|
|Presented the 60th anniversary tribute to the James Bond series|
|Stephanie Beatriz||Introduced the performance of "Dos Oruguitas"|
|Presented the award for Best Animated Feature|
|Youn Yuh-jung||Presented the award for Best Supporting Actor|
|Presented the award for Best International Feature Film|
|Mila Kunis||Introduced the performance of "Somehow You Do"|
|Ruth E. Carter
|Presented the award for Best Costume Design|
|John Leguizamo||Introduced the performance of "We Don't Talk About Bruno"|
J. K. Simmons
|Presented the award for Best Original Screenplay|
Reunited for the 15th anniversary of Juno
Tracee Ellis Ross
|Presented the award for Best Adapted Screenplay|
|Rami Malek||Introduced the performance of "No Time to Die"|
|Chris Rock||Presented the award for Best Documentary Feature|
|Sean Combs||Presented the 50th anniversary tribute to The Godfather trilogy|
Jamie Lee Curtis
|Introduced tributes to Sidney Poitier, Ivan Reitman, and Betty White during the "In Memoriam" segment|
|Jill Scott||Spoke at the end of the "In Memoriam" segment|
|Presented the award for Best Original Song|
|Kevin Costner||Presented the award for Best Director|
Samuel L. Jackson
|Presented the award for Best Actor|
Reunited for the 28th anniversary of Pulp Fiction
|Anthony Hopkins||Presented the award for Best Actress|
|Presented the award for Best Picture|
Minnelli's appearance honored the 50th anniversary of Cabaret
|Beyoncé||Performer||"Be Alive" from King Richard|
|Sebastián Yatra||Performer||"Dos Oruguitas" from Encanto|
|Reba McEntire||Performer||"Somehow You Do" from Four Good Days|
Megan Thee Stallion
|Performers||"We Don't Talk About Bruno" from Encanto|
|Performers||"No Time to Die" from No Time to Die|
|Sunday Service Choir||Performers||"In Memoriam" segment|
|DJ D-Nice||Performer||House DJ|
The Academy stated that Van Morrison was invited to perform his nominated song "Down to Joy" from Belfast, but could not attend the Oscars due to his tour schedule; therefore the song was not performed on the broadcast.
The following persons were mentioned in the "In Memoriam" segment, which pays tribute to people in the film industry who died in the preceding year. Notably absent were Bob Saget, Ed Asner, Gaspard Ulliel, Monica Vitti, Norm Macdonald, and Willie Garson.
the Samples, a vocal group led by Kanye's Sunday Service choirmaster Jason White