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The Cat's Eye

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The Cat's Eye

The Oscars recap: A show of monumental firsts and predictable outcomes

Luciana Martin
An Oscar shining brightly with a blurred background

On Sunday, March 10, the Dolby Theater, located on the iconic Hollywood Boulevard was packed to the brim with industry starlets for the annual Academy Awards. The 96th Academy Awards was a monumental event and was one of the highest-watched awards shows.  At least 21.9 million total viewers making it the strongest award show telecasted in four years since the 2020 Oscars broadcast. This was a momentous night for movies and was a night filled with fun musical performances and monumental moments for first-time winners. 

For the first performance of the night, the nine-time Grammy winner Billie Eilish stepped out with her brother Finneas O’Connell to perform her ballad “What Was I Made For?” from the summer blockbuster “Barbie” directed by Greta Gerwig. The film was nominated for the best-adapted screenplay. This performance was simple yet tugged at the heartstrings of viewers at home. The song later went on to win “Best Original Song” making this Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell’s second Academy Award in this category, which cemented Billie Eilish as the second youngest person to hold this title. 

Ryan Gosling’s power ballad

Later in the evening following the theme of Barbie, Ryan Gosling hit the stage performing “I’m Just Ken.” Gosling portrayed Barbie’s iconic partner-in-crime Ken in the 2023 movie “Barbie.” Gosling’s character has a pivotal point in the film leading to him breaking out into an ironic-pop ballad titled “I’m Just Ken”.

Gosling’s performance held cameos from fellow castmates in “Barbie” such as Simu Liu and Kingsley Ben-Adir, along with these castmates there was a surprise appearance from Guns-N-Roses guitarist Slash who appeared on the original cast recording.

First’s for the Oscars

Along with the more lighthearted performances came a majorly groundbreaking performance from Scott George and The Osage Singers performing their original Song “Wahzhazhe (A Song For My People)” from Martin Scoreses’s 2023 film “Killers Of The Flower Moon.”

Scorcese’s film follows the tragic murders of the Osage tribe in 1920s Oklahoma. This performance marks a major milestone as this is the first time in the history of the Academy Awards that an Indigenous group has been nominated for a major Academy Award for Best Original Song. 

George and The Osage Singers were not the only ones to make history that night. Lily Gladstone became the first ever Indigenous woman to be nominated for Best Actress in the history of the academy. Gladstone portrayed “Mollie Burkeheart,” a key figure in the Oklahoma Osage murders.

Despite Gladstone not winning Best Actress, her presence during this award show season has opened up many doors for young Native American children who want to pursue a career in the entertainment industry.

 In Gladstone’s Golden Globes acceptance speech, she stated:

This is for every little rez kid, every little urban kid, and every little native kid out there who has a dream who is seeing themselves represented and our stories told, by ourselves, in our own words with tremendous allies and tremendous trust from within each other.” 

Her speech stands true as her presence during this award show season has acted as a light for people of Indigenous culture choosing to endure in the landscape of the entertainment industry, despite Gladstone not taking home the award for Best Actress, she has shined a light onto her Indigenous culture by being involved in “Killers Of The Flower Moon” and making history.

Major award winners

Christopher Nolan’s latest film “Oppenheimer” scored big during the 2023-2024 awards season. The movie revolves around the life of Robert J. Oppenheimer, who was the main creator behind the formation of the first nuclear bomb. 

The film has won a total of 30 awards in multiple categories, making it one of the most successful movies of the award show season. This impressive achievement has spanned several months of award ceremonies, and it highlights the incredible talent and skill that went into the making of the film.

Oppenheimer earned more than $957 million in the box office making it the fifth largest domestic box office achievement for 2023.

RCHS reacts

A question arises every year with audiences at home: was this award show season predictable? 

 “I thought it was super predictable, I felt like a lot of the actors had so much buzz around their performances due to their fanbases,” Madison Cruz, a senior at Rancho Cucamonga High School said.

“The actors nominated were so popular with the media at the time,” Cruz said.

Many movie-goers were up in arms once they noticed that Barbie was not nominated for any major categories besides Best Adapted Screenplay.

“I feel like a lot of movies snubbed had their moments during their release month but that doesn’t always guarantee a nomination,” Cruz said.

Other movies such as The Iron Claw directed by Sean Durkin, which followed the tragic events surrounding the Texas wrestling family the Von-Erichs, which received zero nominations or acknowledgment during the award show season. 

As the 2023-2024 award show season comes to an end, audiences at home eagerly wait for what’s in store next season and crave to know what 2024 films will be on the roster for next year’s Academy Awards.

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About the Contributors
Luciana Martin
Luciana Martin, Media Manager
Luciana Martin Is a senior at RCHS , this is her second year in journalism and her first year managing media and photography for The Cat’s Eye. When she Isn’t working on writing articles Martin enjoys collect new records for her collection and learning her favorite songs on her guitar. Martins favorite thing about journalism is getting to elaborate on subjects she finds interesting and learning about others' experiences in life and seeing different perspectives on topics. What do you plan to do after High School? After Highschool Luciana plans on majoring in journalism , specifically entertainment and music journalism with a minor in music mainly focusing in sound technician. What is your Zodiac sign? Luciana is a Gemini with a moon in Leo and Sagittarius rising sign. Luciana does believe that traits of the zodiac do effect aspects of our personalties types in some ways.
Morgan Renfro
Morgan Renfro, Media Manager
Morgan Renfro is a junior at RCHS and is the media manager of the school’s newspaper, The Cat’s Eye. This is her first year of journalism. In the future, Renfro hopes to attend UCLA and study film production. She also enjoys writing, watching films, and art.

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