10 Most Bitter Oscar Reactions   7 comments

Now that most of the major hoopla regarding’s the 84th Oscar Awards last Sunday night, there’s one thing that is still buzzed about in different forums and conversations by award prognosticators. With Meryl’s possible-but-expected-yet-people-are-acting-it-was-an-upset upset for the Best Actress trophy, people have been buzzing how Viola Davis was robbed, how Meryl stole Viola’s Oscar, and how bitter Viola looked when it was not her name that was called (refer to the photo above). However, in Viola’s case, when the whole world pretty much said that you’ll win this already, it’s really difficult, despite an actress of her great caliber, to fake a very happy reaction.

And with that, I made a tribute of ten Oscar reactions that made us realize how much actors wanted that Oscar, and how good they are to conceal their looks once they hear that it wasn’t their name inside those golden envelopes. Based on their faces alone, they really deserve to lose the Oscar for not being able to act upon the most caught off guard scenarios. LOL. Enjoy!

10. Burt Reynolds lost to Robin Williams (1997)

The category was Supporting Actor, and Burt Reynolds was nominated for Paul Thomas Anderson’s provocative Boogie Nights. Robin Williams, on the other hand, was in the Best Picture nominee Good Will Hunting. The consensus was that Reynolds was good in his role,  but Williams was an Oscar overdue figure (with past nominations) who is in a serious Oscar baiting role. In the end, Williams pulled off the expected victory, and Reynolds bitter heavy clapping reached viewers all over the world.

09. Salma Hayek lost to Nicole Kidman (2002)

This one is a bit trickier since Salma didn’t win any precursor that year, and it was clearly obvious that she got the filler position for a passion project (Frida). When Nicole Kidman (who won for The Hours) was called, Salma Hayek did this fake “Oh” reaction with matching slow claps, as if Kidman wasn’t one of the two frontrunners that year. It’s clearly just her last moment to catch the attention. Now if we’re talking about Renee Zellweger’s constipated face all throughout the category…

08. Jessica Lange lost to Sally Field (1984)

Long before the “You like me. You really really like me” speech that Sally Field delivered when she won her second Lead Actress Oscar, it was a clear of plain bitchiness on Jessica Lange’s part when she didn’t clap and gave THAT look once Sally Field’s name was called. Maybe it was jealousy, maybe it was a sign of relief, but one thing’s for sure: she wasn’t happy that Field got thats econd Lead Oscar before Lange got her first.

07. Fernanda Montenegro lost to Gwyneth Paltrow (1998)

Always a regular at the worst Best Actress wins, Gwyneth Paltrow’s victory is always one of the most contested, and most heated debate at all Oscar related discussions. Sadly, even the nominees weren’t much in awe of the overall champion. Cate Blanchett was clapping for her friend Gwyneth, and Meryl Streep was her usual grateful look (not as jolly like the ones for Cher and Susan Sarandon). Emily Watson looks somewhat pissed, but it was Fernanda Montengero who clearly stole the spotlight with her Odette Khan look once Gwyneth was called.

06. Kathy Bates lost to Catherine Zeta Jones (2002)

The presenter was past Supporting Actor winner Sean Connery. Connery is indeed known to be a co-star of one of the frontrunners and eventual winner Catherine Zeta Jones. After opening the envelope, Sean said “And the Oscar goes to… Catherine.” Now while the other three nominees are already clapping, Kathy Bates was caught confused and pissed, and had the theme of Chicago not been played in the background, I’m pretty sure she would have had contested that it was “Kathy Bates” and not “Catherine.”

05. Lauren Bacall lost to Juliette Binoche (1997)

Lauren Bacall is an old Hollywood legend that is overdue for an Oscar thus sweeping all the precursors away. Juliette Binoche is an international French actress who stars in a Best Picture nominee. In probably one of the biggest upsets ever in the history of this category (just look at the faces of the three other nominees), I’m giving legend Lauren the right to get pissed. The one sitting beside her upstaged her though, as if he has her speech on his tux.

04. Samuel L Jackson lost to Martin Landau (1994)

Men mostly get free passes with bitter looks, as they are good in hiding how they actually feel, but there seems to be an exception every now and then. In 1994, Samuel L Jackson wasn’t able to contain his regret of losing to Martin Landau that he uttered the S word to fast while the camera is still on him. Until now, that still gets the record for the most vocal someone was after losing the Oscar.

03. Julie Christie lost to Marion Cotillard (2007)

In a classic Best Actress cat race, this is pretty much closest to what happened to Best Actress this year. Golden Globe Musical/Comedy and BAFTA went to Marion Cotillard, while Golden Globe Drama and SAG went to Julie Christie. It has been 42 years since Christie prevailed the top man, and everyone know that’s fine already to give her second one. Marion Cotillard is a French actress  who is not in an English language film, and only one performance of that kind has been recognized before (that would be Sophia Loren). Christie plays an Alzheimer’s victim, while Marion played Edith Piaf. It was a nailbiter indeed, and aside from Cate Blanchett’s sudden gasp of emotions, it is noteworthy how delayed Christie’s reaction was. She was even seen not clapping when Cotillard was on stage already. Please raise your hand if you agree with me that the reason Christie was looking down before the winner was announced is that because she’s looking for her speech.

02. Bill Murray lost to Sean Penn (2003)

There’s only a certain limit of emotions one can contain to feel happy for other. Meanwhile, some other people doesn’t have any limit at all. Take the case of perceived frontrunner Bill Murray in 2003. It was his first bid as has been star Bob in Lost in Translation. He was against four time nominee Sean Penn. Even Penn knew that he’ll win as it was his first time (after passing over his three bids) to attend the Oscars that year. Murray’s disappointment can’t be denied which prompted back then Oscar host Billy Crystal to note afterwards “Bill don’t go. Bill, don’t go. No, it’s okay. We love you!”

01. Sally Kirkland lost to Cher (1987)

And the winner for the most bitter goes to Sally Kirkland. It was a heavy set of nominees that year, and from the looks of it, both Sally Kirkland and Cher are on the verge of vanishing into thin air with their nervous faces. Now, I’d like to take a moment to honor the lovely Meryl Streep as she was so excited and was the first one to stand up for colleague and good friend Cher. Right then, we saw Sally Kirkland clean her teeth and flash a very fake smile that even piracy supporters will see how fake it was. I’m not saying she has no right to get upset. After all, her nominated performance in Anna is the only remaining good thing that has happened to her right after. But I can’t help notice entertainment when I see one.

Do you agree with this list? Or are they just misunderstood? Who do you think was left out? Was Viola Davis actually bitter? Pipe them in at the Comments section.

*videos courtesy of the Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Sciences YouTube account

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Posted March 1, 2012 by Nicol Latayan in Awards, Lists

Tagged with , ,

7 responses to “10 Most Bitter Oscar Reactions

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  1. For the Sally winning over Jessica description…Lange had already won her first oscar two years before as supporting actress in TOOTSIE.

  2. Cher’s Oscar was one of the most undeserved…right up there with Halle’s, Gwyneth’s and Liz Taylor’s first one.

  3. you forgot Diana Ross’s reaction to Liza Minnell’s Best Actress win in ’73.

  4. All great choices! One of my favourites is Ellen Burstyn losing Best Actress for her terrific performance as Mrs MacNeil in The Exorcist to Glenda Jackson for A Touch Of Class. It was Glenda’s second Oscar, and she was again a no-show to the ceremony. Ellen can be seen on camera doing a sarcastic nod and muttering, “Hmmm, *what* a surprise!” when Glenda’s name is announced as the winner!

  5. I can’t believe you forgot Joel Grey’s upset for “Cabaret” I believe Robert Duvall even muttered an expletive. And a year later, you couldn’t hide Ellen Burstyn’s shock at Glenda Jackson nabbing Best Actress.

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