The 2019 Oscars will surely be one to watch with stars like Regina King, Glenn Close and Lady Gaga all up for top awards. There are definitely going to be some inspiring speeches that will come from the biggest night in Hollywood.
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Over the 90 plus years during which the Oscars have been running, there have been amazing speeches from the likes of Halle Berry, Patricia Arquette, Jamie Foxx, Sally Field and many more.
Here’s a look back at seven speeches that will certainly stand the test of time.
1. Jamie Foxx, 2005
When Foxx won his best actor Oscar for “Ray,” he made sure to give a shout out to the special lady that raised him.
“My daughter shares my grandmother’s name: Marie,” he said. “My grandmother’s name is Estelle Marie Talley. And she’s not here tonight. And this is going to be the toughest part. But she was my first acting teacher. She told me, ‘Stand up straight. Put your shoulders back. Act like you got some sense.’ We would go places and I would wild out, and she says, ‘Act like you’ve been somewhere.'”
He continued, “She would talk to me and tell me … ‘I want you to be a southern gentleman.’ And she still talks to me now; only now she talks to me in my dreams. And I can’t wait to go to sleep tonight because we got a lot to talk about. I love you.”
2. Halle Berry, 2002
Berry made history when she won the Oscar for “Monster’s Ball” more than 15 years ago, becoming the first African-American woman to win the award for best actress.
Berry made sure to recognize all that came before her and those to come.
“This moment is so much bigger than me. This moment is for Dorothy Dandridge, Lena Horne, Diahann Carroll. It’s for the women that stand beside me, Jada Pinkett, Angela Bassett, Vivica Fox. And it’s for every nameless, faceless woman of color that now has a chance because this door tonight has been opened. Thank you. I’m so honored. I’m so honored,” she said.
She also took time out to thank her mother.
“I want to thank my mom who has given me the strength to fight every single day to be who I want to be and to give me the courage to dream, that this dream might be happening and possible for me. I love you, Mom, so much,” she said.
3. Sally Field, 1985
Winning her best actress honor for “Places in the Heart,” Field couldn’t contain her excitement when she stepped to the stage.
“This means so much more to me this time. I don’t know why. I think the first time I hardly felt it because it was all so new. I owe a lot to the cast, to my players, to Lindsay and John and Danny and Ed and Amy and my little friends Gennie and Yankton. I owe a lot to my family for holding me together and loving me and having patience with this obsession of me. But I want to say thank you to you. I haven’t had an orthodox career and I’ve wanted more than anything to have your respect. The first time I didn’t feel it, but this time I feel it,” she said.
And then she uttered those now-famous words, “And I can’t deny the fact that you like me. Right now, you like me! Thank you.”
4. Barry Jenkins, 2017
Two years ago, the Oscars made history for all the wrong reasons, telling the audience “La La Land” won, when it was really “Moonlight” that took home best picture.
Director Barry Jenkins stepped to the stage and delivered a powerful speech so many marginalized men and women in this country still feel and resonate with.
With everyone shocked in the room, he said, “Clearly even in my dreams this could not be true!”
“But to hell with dreams, I’m done with it, because this is true,” he added.
The next month, Jenkins told reporters what his speech would have been if given more time.
“Tarell and I are Chiron. We are that boy. And when you watch ‘Moonlight,’ you don’t assume a boy who grew up how and where we did would grow up and make a piece of art that wins an Academy Award — certainly don’t think he would grow up to win Best Picture. I’ve said that a lot and what I’ve had to admit is that I placed those limitations on myself … And so, to anyone watching this who sees themselves in us, let this be a symbol, a reflection that leads you to love yourself. Because doing so may be the difference between dreaming at all and somehow, through the Academy’s grace, realizing dreams you never allowed yourself to have,” he added.
5. Jennifer Lawrence, 2013
After walking to the stage, who can forget Jennifer’s tumble while carrying her Dior dress.
But the talented, graceful actress picked herself up and read off an amazing speech.
“Thank you. You guys are just standing up because you feel bad that I fell and that’s really embarrassing, but thank you. This is nuts,” she began.
“Thank you to the Academy and thank you to the women this year. You were so magnificent and so inspiring, and not just those of you in my category. And it has been so amazing getting to know you. And you’ve been so nice and you’ve made this experience unforgettable … And Bradley, and our entire cast – Chris, Jacki, Bob – and our crew. And my family. Happy birthday, Emmanuelle. Thank you so much. Thanks,” she continued.
6. Patricia Arquette, 2015
Arquette was the definition of empowering when she won best supporting actress in 2015 for her role in “Boyhood,” the movie that took around 10 years to make.
After thanking her cast and her family, she added, “To every woman who gave birth, to every taxpayer and citizen of this nation, we have fought for everybody else’s equal rights. It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all and equal rights for women in the United States of America.”
She continued discussing the topic backstage.
“The truth is, the older women get, the less money they make,” she said. “It is time for us. Equal means equal.”
7. Meryl Streep, 2012
We can’t have a list of best Oscars speeches and not include Meryl!
After winning for “The Iron Lady” in 2012, Streep graciously came to the stage and was her usual inspiring self. She also joked about the fact that she is nominated so often because of her dedication to her craft.
“When they called my name I had this feeling I could hear half of America going, “Oh no! Oh, c’mon why? Her? Again?” You know? But, whatever,” she joked.
“First I’m going to thank Don, because when you thank your husband at the end of the speech they play him out with the music, and I want him to know that everything I value most in our lives you’ve given me. And now secondly, my other partner,” she added. “Thirty-seven years ago, my first play in New York City, I met the great hairstylist and makeup artist Roy Helland … His first film with me was ‘Sophie’s Choice,’ and all the way up to tonight when he won for his beautiful work in ‘The Iron Lady’ thirty years later. Every single movie in between. And I just want to thank Roy, but also I want to thank — because I really understand I’ll never be up here again. I really want to thank all my colleagues, all my friends. I look out here and, you know, I see my life before my eyes: my old friends, my new friends. And really, this is such a great honor.”
The 2019 Oscars take place at 8 p.m. Feb. 24 on ABC.
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