2019 Academy Awards: ‘Green Book’ wins three Oscars, including Best Picture

February 24, 2019

by Carla Hay


"Green Book
Mahershala Ali and Viggo Mortensen in “Green Book” (Photo by Patti Perret)

Universal Pictures’ “Green Book” won three Oscars, including Best Picture, at the 91st Academy Awards, which took place at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on February 24, 2019.  Meanwhile, Netflix’s Spanish-language film “Roma,”  which went into the ceremony tied with the most nominations (10), won four Oscars. There was no host for the show, following the controversy over Kevin Hart quitting the job over his past homophobic remarks, as well as disagreements over his public apologies for those remarks. ABC had the U.S. telecast of the Academy Awards ceremony, which is presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

“Green Book” is inspired by the true story of a friendship that develops between Italian-American driver Tony “Lip” Vallelonga and African-American pianist Don Shirley during a early 1960s road trip in the segregated South. “Green Book” also won Oscars for Best Supporting Actor (Marhershala Ali, who plays Shirley) and Best Original Screenplay, which was co-written by Nick Vallelonga (one of Tony Vallelonga’s sons) and director Peter Farrelly. “Green Book” is one of the few movies that has won the Oscar for Best Picture without its director getting a Best Director nomination.

“Roma” is inspired by filmmaker Alfonso Cuarón’s childhood in early 1970s Mexico, as seen through the perspective of his family’s nanny/housekeeper. “Roma” won the Oscars for Best Director, Best Cinematography and Best Foreign Language Film.  Cuarón was a winner of all three of these Oscars, since he is the director and cinematographer of “Roma,” as well as one of the film’s producers.

The official Queen biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” won four Oscars: Best Actor (for Rami Malek), Best Film Editing, Best Sound Editing and Sound Mixing. 20th Century Fox’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” was nominated for five Oscars, including Best Picture.

Fox Searchlight’s “The Favourite,” which had 10 nominations going into the ceremony, won one award that came as a surprise to many: Best Actress, for Olivia Colman, who triumphed over widely predicted Glenn Close of “The Wife,” who had been winning several major prizes in this category at other major award shows. “The Favourite,” set in the early 1700s, tells the story of Great Britain’s Queen Anne and two women who compete for her affections. Meanwhile, Regina King of “If Beale Street Could Talk” won for Best Supporting Actress.

Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther,” won three out its seven Oscar nominations: Best Original Score, Best Costume Design and Best Production Design. “Black Panther” now holds the record as the superhero movie with the most Oscars.

Presenters at the 2019 Academy Awards were Awkwafina, Daniel Craig, Chris Evans, Tina Fey, Jennifer Lopez, Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph, Amandla Stenberg, Tessa Thompson Constance Wu, Javier Bardem, Angela Bassett, Chadwick Boseman, Emilia Clarke, Laura Dern, Samuel L. Jackson, Stephan James, Keegan-Michael Key, KiKi Layne, James McAvoy, Melissa McCarthy, Jason Momoa, Sarah Paulson, Gary Oldman, Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell, Allison Janney, Elsie Fisher, Danai Gurira, Brian Tyree Henry, Michael B. Jordan, Michael Keaton, Helen Mirren, John Mulaney, Tyler Perry, Pharrell Williams, Krysten Ritter, Paul Rudd, Michelle Yeoh, José Andrés, Dana Carvey, Queen Latifah, Congressman John Lewis, Diego Luna, Tom Morello, Mike Myers, Trevor Noah, Amandla Stenberg, Barbra Streisand and Serena Williams.

Queen with singer Adam Lambert opened the show with a medley of Queen’s “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions.” Other musical performances were for four of the five Oscar-nominated songs. Bette Midler sang “The Place Where Los Things Go” from “Mary Poppins Returns.” Jennifer Hudson performed “I’ll Fight” from “RBG.” David Rawlings and Gillian Welch performed “When a Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings” from “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.” Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper duetted on “Shallow” from “A Star Is Born,” which won the Oscar for Best Original Song. “All the Stars” from “Black Panther” was not performed since the song’s artists Kendrick Lamar and SZA declined to perform the song.

Donna Gigliotti (who won an Oscar for Best Picture for 1998’s “Shakespeare in Love) and Emmy-winning director Glenn Weiss were the producers of the 2019 Academy Awards. This was the first time that Gigliotti is producing the Oscar ceremony. Weiss has directed several major award shows, including the Oscars and the Tonys.

Diversity and Historic Wins

Rami Malek, Olivia Colman, Regina King and Mahershala Ali at the 91st Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on February 24, 2019. (Photo by Rick Rowell/ABC)

It was a historic Oscar ceremony for diversity, since it was a record-breaking Oscar ceremony, with the highest number so far (14) of non-whites winning Oscars in one year. Malek became the first Egyptian-American to win an Oscar for Best Actor. Ali of “Green Book” and Regina King of “If Beale Street Could Talk” joined the growing list of black actors who have won Oscars. “BlacKkKlansman” screenplay co-writer Spike Lee won his first Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay. (Lee  also received an honorary Oscar, a non-competitive prize, in 2015.) Black filmmakers won in the categories for Best Adapted Screenplay (Lee and Kevin Willmott); Best Animated Feature (“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” co-director Peter Ramsey); Best Production Design (Hannah Beachler of “Black Panther”); and Best Costume Design (Ruth Carter of “Black Panther”). It was the first time that black people have won Oscars for Best Animated Feature, Best Costume Design and Best Production Design.

Asian filmmakers also had several Oscar wins: “Free Solo” directors/producers Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyil won for Best Documentary Feature; “Bao” director Domee Shi won for Best Animated Short; and “Period. End of Sentence.” director/producer Rayka Zehtabchi won for Best Live-Action Short. “Roma” was the movie that gave Latinos the most representation at this year’s Academy Awards, with wins for Cuarón and producer Gabriela Rodríguez.

The number of female Oscar winners increased considerably in 2019, compared to 2018. In 2019, there were 15 female winners and 36 male winners, compared to 2018, when there were only six female winners and 24 male winners.

In addition, this was the first time in Oscar history that three of the four acting prizes went to LGBTQ character roles, and these characters also happened to be based on real people: Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury of “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Queen Anne of “The Favourite” and pianist Shirley of “Green Book.”

Here is the complete list of winners and nominations for the 2019 Academy Awards:


Best Picture

Mahershala Ali and Viggo Mortensen in “Green Book” (Photo by Patti Perret)

“Black Panther”
(Producer: Kevin Feige)

(Producers: Sean McKittrick, Jason Blum, Raymond Mansfield, Jordan Peele and Spike Lee)

“Bohemian Rhapsody”
(Producer: Graham King)

“The Favourite”
(Producers: Ceci Dempsey, Ed Guiney, Lee Magiday and Yorgos Lanthimos)

“Green Book”*
(Producers: Jim Burke, Charles B. Wessler, Brian Currie, Peter Farrelly and Nick Vallelonga)

(Producers: Gabriela Rodríguez and Alfonso Cuarón)

“A Star Is Born”
(Producers: Bill Gerber, Bradley Cooper and Lynette Howell Taylor)

(Producers: Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, Adam McKay and Kevin Messick)

Best Actor

Rami Malek and Gwilym Lee in “Bohemian Rhapsody” (Photo by Alex Bailey)

Christian Bale, “Vice”
Bradley Cooper, “A Star Is Born”
Willem Dafoe, “At Eternity’s Gate”
Rami Malek, “Bohemian Rhapsody”*
Viggo Mortensen, “Green Book”

Best Actress

Olivia Colman in “The Favourite” (Photo by Atsushi Nishijima)

Yalitza Aparicio, “Roma”
Glenn Close, “The Wife”
Olivia Colman, “The Favourite”*
Lady Gaga, “A Star Is Born”
Melissa McCarthy, “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”

Best Supporting Actor

Mahershala Ali in “Green Book” (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures and Participant Media)

Mahershala Ali, “Green Book”*
Adam Driver, “BlacKkKlansman”
Sam Elliott, “A Star Is Born”
Richard E. Grant, “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”
Sam Rockwell, “Vice”

Best Supporting Actress

Regina King in “If Beale Street Could Talk” (Photo by Tatum Mangus)

Amy Adams, “Vice”
Marina de Tavira, “Roma”
Regina King, “If Beale Street Could Talk”*
Emma Stone, “The Favourite”
Rachel Weisz, “The Favourite”

Best Director

Alfonso Cuarón and Yalitza Aparicio on the set of “Roma” (Photo by Carlos Somonte/Netflix)

Spike Lee, “BlacKkKlansman”
Paweł Pawlikowski, “Cold War”
Yorgos Lanthimos, “The Favourite”
Alfonso Cuarón, “Roma”*
Adam McKay, “Vice”

Best Animated Feature

“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” (Image courtesy of Sony Pictures Animation)

“Incredibles 2,” directed by Brad Bird; produced by John Walker and Nicole Paradis Grindle

“Isle of Dogs,” directed and produced by Wes Anderson; produced by Scott Rudin, Steven Rales and Jeremy Dawson

“Mirai,” directed by Mamoru Hosoda; produced by Yuichiro Saito

“Ralph Breaks the Internet,” directed by Rich Moore and Phil Johnston; produced by Clark Spencer

“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” directed by Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey and Rodney Rothman; produced by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller*

Best Animated Short

“Animal Behaviour,” directed and produced by Alison Snowden and David Fine
“Bao,” directed by Domee Shi; produced by Becky Neiman-Cobb*
“Late Afternoon,” directed by Louise Bagnall; produced by Nuria González Blanco
“One Small Step,” directed by Andrew Chesworth and Bobby Pontillas
“Weekends,” directed and produced by Trevor Jimenez

Best Adapted Screenplay

Spike Lee and Adam Driver on the set of “BlacKkKlansman” (Photo by David Lee/ Focus Features)

“The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” Joel Coen and Ethan Coen
“BlacKkKlansman,” Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott and Spike Lee*
“Can You Ever Forgive Me?,” Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty
“If Beale Street Could Talk,” Barry Jenkins
“A Star Is Born,” Eric Roth, Bradley Cooper and Will Fetters

Best Original Screenplay

Viggo Mortensen, writer/director/producer Peter Farrelly and Mahershala Ali on the set of “Green Book” (Photo by Patti Perret)

“The Favourite,” Deborah Davis, Tony McNamara
“First Reformed,” Paul Schrader
“Green Book,” Nick Vallelonga, Brian Currie and Peter Farrelly*
“Roma,” Alfonso Cuarón
“Vice,” Adam McKay

Best Cinematography

Marco Graf, Daniela Demesa, Yalitza Aparicio, Marina De Tavira, Diego Cortina Autrey and Carlos Peralta Jacobson in “Roma” (Photo by Carlos Somonte)

“Cold War,” Łukasz Żal
“The Favourite,” Robbie Ryan
“Never Look Away,” Caleb Deschanel
“Roma,” Alfonso Cuarón*
“A Star Is Born,” Matthew Libatique

Best Documentary Feature

Alex Honnold in “Free Solo” (Photo courtesy of National Geographic)

“Free Solo,” directed and produced by Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyil; produced by Evan Hayes and Shannon Dill*

“Hale County This Morning, This Evening,” directed and produced by RaMell Ross; produced by Joslyn Barnes and Su Kim

“Minding the Gap,” directed and produced by Bing Liu; produced by Diane Quon

“Of Fathers and Sons,” directed by Talal Derki; produced by Ansgar Frerich, Eva Kemme and Tobias N. Siebert

“RBG,” directed and produced by Betsy West and Julie Cohen

Best Documentary Short Subject

“Black Sheep,” directed by Ed Perkins; produced by Jonathan Chinn
“End Game,” directed and produced by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman
“Lifeboat,” directed and produced by Skye Fitzgerald
“A Night at the Garden,” directed and produced by Marshall Curry
“Period. End of Sentence.,” directed and produced by Rayka Zehtabchi*

Best Live Action Short Film

“Detainment,” directed and produced by Vincent Lambe; produced by Darren Mahon
“Fauve,” directed by Jeremy Comte; produced by Maria Gracia Turgeon
“Marguerite,” directed by Marianne Farley; produced by Marie-Hélène Panisset
“Mother,” directed by Rodrigo Sorogoyen; produced by María del Puy Alvarado
“Skin,” directed and produced by Guy Nattiv; produced by Jaime Ray Newman*

Best Foreign Language Film

Yalitza Aparicio, Marco Graf, Carlos Peralta Jacobson and Daniela Demesa in “Roma” (Photo by Alfonso Cuarón)

“Capernaum” (Lebanon)
“Cold War” (Poland)
“Never Look Away” (Germany)
“Roma” (Mexico)*
“Shoplifters” (Japan)

Best Film Editing

Gwilym Lee, Ben Hardy, Rami Malek and Joe Mazzello in “Bohemian Rhapsody” (Photo courtesy of 20th Century Fox)

“BlacKkKlansman,” Barry Alexander Brown
“Bohemian Rhapsody,” John Ottman*
“Green Book,” Patrick J. Don Vito
“The Favourite,” Yorgos Mavropsaridis
“Vice,” Hank Corwin

Best Sound Editing

Gwilym Lee, Rami Malek and Joe Mazzello in “Bohemian Rhapsody” (Photo courtesy 20th Century Fox)

“Black Panther,” Benjamin A. Burtt and Steve Boeddeker
“Bohemian Rhapsody,” John Warhurst*
“First Man,” Ai-Ling Lee and Mildred Iatrou Morgan
“A Quiet Place,” Ethan Van der Ryn and Erik Aadahl
“Roma,” Sergio Diaz and Skip Lievsay

Best Sound Mixing

Joe Mazzello, Ben Hardy, Rami Malek and Gwilym Lee in “Bohemian Rhapsody” (Photo by Alex Bailey)

“Black Panther,” Steve Boeddeker, Brandon Proctor and Peter Devlin
“Bohemian Rhapsody,” Paul Massey, Tim Cavagin and John Casali*
“First Man,” Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montaño, Ai-Ling Lee and Mary H. Ellis
“Roma,” Skip Lievsay, Craig Henighan and José Antonio García
“A Star Is Born,” Tom Ozanich, Dean Zupancic, Jason Ruder and Steve Morrow

Best Production Design

Michael B. Jordan and Daniel Kaluuya in “Black Panther” (Photo courtesy of Disney/Marvel Studios)

“Black Panther”*
Production Design: Hannah Beachler; Set Decoration: Jay Hart

“The Favourite”
Production Design: Fiona Crombie; Set Decoration: Alice Felton

“First Man”
Production Design: Nathan Crowley; Set Decoration: Kathy Lucas

“Mary Poppins Returns”
Production Design: John Myhre; Set Decoration: Gordon Sim

Production Design: Eugenio Caballero; Set Decoration: Bárbara Enríquez

Best Original Score

Lupita Nyong’o and Chadwick Boseman in “Black Panther” (Photo courtesy of Disney/Marvel Studios)

“BlacKkKlansman,” Terence Blanchard
“Black Panther,” Ludwig Goransson*
“If Beale Street Could Talk,” Nicholas Britell
“Isle of Dogs,” Alexandre Desplat
“Mary Poppins Returns,” Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman

Best Original Song

Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper in “A Star Is Born” (Photo by Clay Enos)

“All the Stars” from “Black Panther,” song written by Kendrick Lamar, Solana Rowe (SZA), Mark Spears and Anthony Tiffith

“I’ll Fight” from “RBG,” song written by Diane Warren

“The Place Where Lost Things Go” from “Mary Poppins Returns,” song written by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman

“Shallow” from “A Star Is Born,” song written by Lady Gaga, Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando, Andrew Wyatt and Benjamin Rice*

“When A Cowboy Trades His Spurs For Wings” from “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” song written by David Rawlings and Gillian Welch

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

Amy Adams and Christian Bale in “Vice” (Photo by Matt Kennedy)

“Border,” Göran Lundström and Pamela Goldammer
“Mary Queen of Scots,” Jenny Shircore, Marc Pilcher and Jessica Brooks
“Vice,” Greg Cannom, Kate Biscoe and Patricia DeHaney*

Best Costume Design

Lupita Nyong’o and Letitia Wright in “Black Panther” (Photo by Matt Kennedy)

“The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” Mary Zophres
“Black Panther,” Ruth E. Carter*
“The Favourite,” Sandy Powell
“Mary Poppins Returns,” Sandy Powell
“Mary Queen of Scots,” Alexandra Byrne

Best Visual Effects

Ryan Gosling in “First Man”  (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures and DreamWorks Pictures)

“Avengers: Infinity War,” Dan DeLeeuw, Kelly Port, Russell Earl and Dan Sudick

“Christopher Robin,” Christopher Lawrence, Michael Eames, Theo Jones and Chris Corbould

“First Man,” Paul Lambert, Ian Hunter, Tristan Myles and J.D. Schwalm*

“Ready Player One,” Roger Guyett, Grady Cofer, Matthew E. Butler and David Shirk

“Solo: A Star Wars Story,” Rob Bredow, Patrick Tubach, Neal Scanlan and Dominic Tuohy

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