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most memorable oscar moments of all time

Brush up on your Oscar knowledge in preparation for the 2021 ceremony. 

MOVIES

Hattie McDaniel became the first Black actress to win an Oscar, for her role as “Mammy” in Gone with the Wind.

1940

Bettmann/Getty

“Thank you,” was all Alfred Hitchock said as he accepted a lifetime achievement award.

1968

Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection

Barbra Streisand and Katharine Hepburn tied for Best Actress at the first Oscar ceremony to be internationally televised. Hepburn was a no-show that year.

1969

ABC Photo Archives/Getty

Robert Opel’s legacy as The Streaker will live on in Oscar hilarity.

1974

Hulton Archive/Getty

Cher turned heads in a black showgirl dress. We can’t look away from that huge headdress.

1986

Jim Smeal/Ron Galella Collection

Halle Berry became the first Black woman to win Best Actress, for her role in Monster Ball.

2002

Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc

This moment is so much bigger than me.”

halle berry at the oscars

Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc

A year after his death, Heath Ledger won Best Supporting Actor for his chilling performance as the Joker in The Dark Knight. Ledger’s family accepted on his behalf.

2009

Jason Merritt/Getty

It only took 87 years, but Kathryn Bigelow became the first (and only thus far) woman to win Best Director. Maybe 2021 will change this…

2010

Dan MacMedan/WireImage

i'd love to just think of myself as a filmmaker, and i long for the day when the modifier can be a moot point."

kathryn bigelow to the press room

WireImage House

Jennifer Lawrence tripped on her way to accept the Best Actress award. But she looked fabulous while doing so!

2013

oscars

You guys are just standing up because you feel bad that I fell, and that's really embarrassing but thank you.”

jennifer lawrence at the oscars

Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage

This star-studded Ellen DeGeneres selfie will definitely be in history books.

2014

Ellen DeGeneres/Twitter/Handout

A red carpet moment we’ll never forget: Lupita Nyong’o’s powder blue Prada dress.

2014

Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Six nominations later, Leonardo DiCaprio finally won an Oscar — Best Actor, for his role in The Revenant

2016

C Flanigan/FilmMagic

Whose award is it anyway? La La Land was accidentally announced as the Best Picture winner, but Moonlight took home the award. 

2017

Kevin Winter/Getty

Gemma Chan’s magnificent pink dress had what all women want: pockets! Perfect for storing snacks.

2019

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Parasite made 92 years of Oscars history as the first non-English language film to win Best Picture.

2020

oscars

check out more historical oscar moments