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Oscars 2013: Daniel Day-Lewis makes history as Argo takes best film

Lincoln

Story by Jack Foley

DANIEL Day-Lewis has made Oscars history by becoming the first person to win the best actor prize three times.

The British actor took the coveted statuette for his portrayal of the US President in Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln to follow past triumphs for My Left Foot (in 1990) and There Will Be Blood (2008).

And visibly moved, Day-Lewis said: “I really don’t know how any of this happened. I do know I’ve received much more than my fair share of good fortune in my life.”

To put Day-Lewis’s success in context, the win puts him ahead of Hollywood legends Jack Nicholson, Marlon Brando, Dustin Hoffman and Tom Hanks, who all have two best actor wins to their name.

But his success proved to be one of Lincoln‘s only triumphs. Going into the ceremony, Spielberg’s film had led the field with 12 nominations. But it emerged with only two awards.

Spielberg himself lost out to Ang Lee, of Life of Pi fame, in the best director category – one of the night’s few big surprises.

While Lincoln was beaten to the coveted Best Picture statuette by Ben Affleck’s Iranian hostage drama Argo, which subsequently became the first best picture winner not to have a concurrent nomination for best director since 1989’s Driving Miss Daisy.

Indeed, in an acknowledgement of how the Academy had snubbed Affleck in the best director shortlist, Oscars presenter Seth McFarlane joked at the start of the ceremony: “Argo‘s story is so top-secret that its director remains unknown to the Academy.”

Accepting his award alongside fellow producers George Clooney and Grant Heslov, Affleck paid tribute to the “genius” Steven Spielberg who lost out in the same category.

And he also referred to his previous Oscar success in 1997 with Good Will Hunting, saying: “I never thought I would be back here and I am because of so many of you who are here tonight.”

He added: “It doesn’t matter how you get knocked down in life, all that matters is that you get up.”

Upon accepting his Oscar for best director, Ang Lee exclaimed: “Thank you, movie god!”

The Taiwanese-born director has won previously for Brokeback Mountain in 2006.

Two of the other major awards came in the female acting categories and saw Jennifer Lawrence named best actress for her role as a troubled young widow in Silver Linings Playbook and Anne Hathaway crowned best supporting actress for her performance in Les Miserables.

Lawrence, who is only 22, stumbled over her dress on her way to the stage, prompting her to joke: “You guys are just standing up because you feel bad that I fell over and that’s embarrassing.”

But after composing herself and surveying the crowded Dolby Theatre, she added: “This is nuts.”

At 22, Lawrence now ties with Marlee Matlin, who won for Children of a Lesser God in 1987, as the youngest to win lead actress.

Les Miserables

Hathaway, meanwhile, paid clever reference to the song in Les Miserables that many credit with securing her the Academy’s prize, I Dreamed A Dream.

She simply noted “it came true”, before adding: “Here’s hoping that someday in the not too distant future, the misfortunes of Fantine will only be found in stories and not in real life.”

Hathaway had extensively researched sex slavery during her preparation for the role, which also saw her lose weight and have her hair shaved off ahead of her own wedding.

A second major British triumph came for singer Adele, who won the Oscar for best original song for her Bond theme Skyfall, which she also performed during the show.

The tearful singer thanked the Bond producers and her co-writer Paul Epworth, who collected the award alongside her.

The best supporting actor prize, meanwhile, went to Christoph Waltz for Django Unchained, who also won for his previous Quentin Tarantino collaboration Inglourious Basterds.

Tarantino himself collected the Oscar for original screenplay, adding to the Oscar he won for writing Pulp Fiction in 1994.

He commented: “I have to cast the right people to make those characters come alive and boy this time did I do it.”

The best adapted screenplay Oscar went to Chris Terrio for Argo.

Brave

Disney enjoyed two successes among the animation awards when Paperman took best short animation and Pixar’s Scottish adventure Brave won best animated feature.

Yet more British success came for Jacqueline Durran, who won best costume design for Anna Karenina.

She described the win as “completely overwhelming” and paid tribute to her children who were “fast asleep in England”.

The make-up and hairstyling award went to fellow Brits Lisa Westcott and Julie Dartnell for Les Miserables, which won a third prize for sound mixing.

Searching For Sugar Man, which tells the story of musician Rodriguez who disappeared from public view in the early 1970s but developed a cult following in South Africa, won the Oscar for best documentary.

And Austrian drama Amour, from director Michael Haneke, won the Oscar for best foreign language film.

The 85th Annual Academy Awards were held on Sunday, February 24, 2013 and included a tribute to the James Bond franchise, introduced by Halle Berry and including a performance by Shirley Bassey and Adele, a salute to movie musicals of the past decade, with Chicago Oscar-winner Catherine Zeta-Jones and Dreamgirls winner Jennifer Hudson joining Les Miserables cast members that included Hugh Jackman, Anne Hathaway, Russell Crowe, Helena Bonham Carter and Amanda Seyfried.

Barbra Streisand also made her first Oscars performance for 36 years by singing the late Marvin Hamlisch’s The Way We Were during the section of the show that pays tribute to those who died in 2012.

View the full list of winners