The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences handed out awards this evening at the 93rd Academy Awards ceremony, broadcast on the Disney owned ABC. Like every award show this season, the covid-19 pandemic forced producers to create a paired down version of their show, presenting an Oscars that felt like a diet version of their regularly bloated productions.
This year was a huge year for the Walt Disney Company, as the Mouse House brought home five Oscars: two for the animated Disney Pixar hit Soul and three for Disney Searchlight’s Nomadland, streaming on Hulu.
Soul’s two wins were for Best Animated Feature Film and Best Score (Jon Batiste, Trent Reznor, and Atticus Ross).
Nomadland’s two wins were for Best Director (Chloe Zhao), Best Actress (Frances McDormand), and the biggest award of the evening, Best Picture.
Chloe Zhao has become only the second woman to win Best Director, after Kathryn Bigelow’s 2010 win for The Hurt Locker. Zhao’s win not only brings attention to Nomadland, which Disney is happy about, but it also bolsters her status as a top tier director heading into her Fall 2021 debut in Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe with The Eternals. ‘
The Oscars are usually a huge night for television ratings, but every award show has seen dramatic drops in viewership this year due to the unorthodox treatment of feature films due to the pandemic. While the ratings have yet to be announced at the time of this article, everyone is anticipating a sharp drop for ABC.
Disney used the night to promote a large number of upcoming projects, including the first look at Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of West Side Story, set for a December release and a number of advertisements for Disney Plus and an upcoming American Idol special focused on Disney songs within Disney’s theme parks.
It was one of the best nights for the Walt Disney Company at the Academy Awards in decades. Congratulations to Soul and Nomadland.