Politics at the Oscars

By dmerica
  • Oscars postponed after assasination of Martin Luther King, Jr.

    In 1968, the Oscars were postponned for two days after civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. was shot and killed on the balcony of a Memphis motel. Gregory Peck, then Academy President, said "postponement was the only appropriate gesture of respect, a feeling that was embraced by the entire industry."
  • Fonda wins Oscar, "greylisted" from business

    Jane Fonda won the Oscar for Best Actress in 1972 for her portrayal of Bree Daniels in the movie "Klute." Fonda had drawn a great deal of criticism for her outspokenness during the Vietnam War. Fonda's speech was short - she said but 25 words. After a quick thank you, she said "There's a great to deal to say and I'm not going to say it tonight. I would just like to really thank you very much."
  • Sacheen Littlefeather accepts award for Marlon Brando

    Marlon Brando, "The Godfather" heavyweight, did not shy away from making political statements. In 1973, after winning the Oscar for Best Actor, Brando did not go on stage to thank his producers. Instead, Sacheen Littlefeather went on stage, at Brando's request, and protested the way Hollywood had treated Native Americans in the past.
  • "Julia" star stirs controversy after calling out "Zionist hoodlums"

    "Julia" star stirs controversy after calling out "Zionist hoodlums"
    Vanessa Redgrave, the star of "Julia" and narrator of a documentary on the Palestinian Liberation Organization won best actress in 1977. The Jewish Defense League protested her nomination by burning her in effigy. When Redgrave won, he thanked the academy for ignoring "the threats of a small bunch of Zionist hoodlums." Some in the crowd booed her statement. Even presenter Paddy Chayefsky got in on the action, saying she was sick and tired of people making political statments after winning.
  • Attempted assasintation of President Reagan postpones Oscars

    After shots were fired at President Ronald Reagan in Washington, D.C., the Oscars were postponed for 24 hours.
  • Tom Hanks talks homosexuality and AIDS

    Tom Hanks talks homosexuality and AIDS
    Tom Hanks used his 45 seconds on stage to tell the audience about how "the streets of heavan are too crowded with angels," refering to the rampant deaths due to AIDS in 1980s and 90s. Hanks movie, Philadelphia, is widely viewed as one of the reasons HIV/AIDS has gain national attention.
  • Banners fly at Oscars, berate Disney for "sweatshops"

    The drive to the Oscars and the pre-coverage they get can be just as politically charged as the speeches themselves. In 1996 protesters placed banners near the red carpet about what they called Disney's use of "sweatshops."
  • Michael Moore hears boos when he berates Bush

    Michael Moore hears boos when he berates Bush
    On stage for the first time at the Oscars, Michael Moore did not waste the spotlight. After his film "Bowling for Columbine" won the Oscar for Best Documentary, Moore launched into a rant about President George W. Bush and his opinions on the Iraq War. Some in the crowd booed Moore, but like most of his movies, the controversial figure just kept on going.
  • Al Gore wins Oscar for "An Innconvenient Truth"

    Al Gore, former Vice Priesndet of the United States, won an Oscar for his film "An Innconvenient Truth." The win was supported widely during the awards ceremony, but many, primarily Republican, skeptics critisized the selection. An example, Senator Jim Inhofe compared the movie to Adolph Hitlers manifesto, "Mein Kampf."
  • "You will have equal rights," says Milk screenwriter in speech

    "You will have equal rights," says Milk screenwriter in speech
    Dustin Lance Black, screenwriter for the film on gay rights activist and politician Harvey Milk, told Oscar viewers that a time would come when all gay American's would have equal rights. Anti-gay marriage protesters pickted the 2009 Oscars, actions that best actor Sean Penn lashed out at.
  • "The Cove" wins best documentary, sparks controversy

    After "The Cove" won for the award for Best Documentary of 2010, the film's narrator and former Flipper trainer Ric O'Barry held up a sign on stage that said "Text 'Dolphin' to 44144." The sign caused controversy about whether overt political statements should be seen or heard at the Oscars.
  • Banksy, the ellusive street artist, banned from accepting award

    Banksy, whose film "Exit Through The Gift Shop" is nominated as the year's Best Documentary, has been barred from accepting the award, should he win tonight.