The late night TV host presented the ceremony for a second year running
Jimmy Kimmel got the Oscars 2018 underway with a no-holds barred opening monologue. Ahead of the ceremony, he said he wouldn’t ignore the sexual misconduct scandal that has rocked Hollywood, and he certainly kept to his word. Like Seth Meyers at the Golden Globes in January, the late night talk show host nailed the tone, managing to make the room of stars laugh about the events of recent months without making light of the horrific experiences that have made so many headlines. Here are Kimmel’s funniest (and realest) moments from his speech.
On last year’s Best Picture confusion
“Just want to mention – this year when you hear your name called, don’t get up right away,” he told nominees, referring to the cast and crew of La La Land having to be ushered from the stage last year when Moonlight was revealed to be the true winner of the Best Picture award.
He went on to explain what really happened at the 2017 ceremony. “A week before the show, producers asked me if I wanted to some comedy with the accountants,” he explained. “I said, ‘No, I don’t want to do comedy with the accountants’, so the accountants went ahead and did some comedy on their own.”
On how the Oscars has been so enduring
This year is the 90th Oscars and Kimmel had some sage words about how the golden statue had kept such a strong reputation over the years. “He keeps his hands where you can see them, never says a rude word, and – most importantly – no penis at all,” he explained. “That’s the kind of man we need more of in this town.”
On sexual misconduct in Hollywood
The Academy originally said they wanted to focus on the movies rather than the narrative engulfing Hollywood at present, but there was no way they were going to get away with that. Kimmel kicked off the conversation inside the Dolby Theatre in his monologue. “We made a film called What Women Want and it starred Mel Gibson,” he noted early on, adding that was “all you need to know” about men’s attitudes to women in the film industry.
Kimmel also pointed out that if Hollywood could eradicate sexual misconduct in the workplace via things like Time’s Up, “women will only have to deal with it all the time every other place they go”.
On diversity and representation in blockbuster movies
Since the #OscarsSoWhite criticism and the ever-growing conversation about the importance of representation in pop culture, there’s been a rise in diverse casting. The figures might be small (there were 16 percent more black women in movies in 2017, alongside seven percent more Asian and Latina roles), but change is slowly happening. Two of the biggest recent superhero movies, Wonder Woman and Black Panther, were led by a woman and minority actors respectively. “I remember a time when major studios didn’t think a woman or minority could open a superhero movie,” Kimmel said. “I remember that time because it was last March.”
On The White House’s favourite Best Picture nominees
Or not… The US President, unsurprisingly, got a mention in Kimmel’s monologue, but he probably won’t have enjoyed it. While congratulating Jordan Peele on Get Out‘s success, the host joked: “None other than Donald Trump called Get Out the best first three-quarters of a movie this year.”
Later, Kimmel was calling out Call Me By Your Name and noted that it, and many of the Best Picture nominees, didn’t make that much money at the box office. “We don’t make films like Call Me By Your Name to make money,” he said. “We make them to upset Mike Pence.