A Night at the (Not) Red Carpet: A 2023 Oscars Overview


Kevin Winter

An overheard view of host Jimmy Kimmel addressing the Oscars audience.

On March 12, the 95th Academy Awards ceremony was held at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles, California. Hosted by comedian Jimmy Kimmel, this year’s Oscars honored a wide variety of achievements in film and made one heavily discussed break from tradition. This year, the Oscars’ typically red carpet was changed to a champagne color, upsetting some fans. Nevertheless, it was a memorable night celebrating some of this year’s renowned films.

One major winner at the 2023 Oscars was the Sci-Fi film “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” which took home seven awards, including Best Picture. The movie follows Evelyn Quan Wang, an overworked laundromat owner, as she fights bizarre parallel universes where she leads different lives. Michelle Yeoh, who plays Evelyn, became the first Asian woman to win Best Actress, while her co-star, Jamie Lee Curtis, won Best Supporting Actress. Ke Huy Quan, who plays Yeoh’s husband in the film, won in the Best Supporting Actor category, while directors Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert both won Best Director. “Everything Everywhere All At Once” also took home awards in the Editing and Original Screenplay categories. 

Brendan Fraser won in the Best Actor category for his lead role in “The Whale,” which follows a reclusive teacher as he struggles with obesity. The movie utilized VFX, 3-D printing, and prosthetics to transform Fraser, lessening the amount of weight he had to gain for the role. “The Whale” also won in the Makeup and Hairstyling category. 

War drama “All Quiet on the Western Front” won several categories, including Cinematography, Production Design, and International Feature. The film, which follows soldiers during the First World War, was praised by critics for its striking and powerful imagery.

Additionally, two long-awaited sequels, “Top Gun: Maverick” and “Avatar: The Way of Water” also took home awards at the ceremony. Shockingly, despite being one of the most popular movies of 2022 and receiving six Oscar nominations, “Top Gun: Maverick” only won in the Sound category. “Avatar: The Way of Water” took home an award in the Visual Effects category. 

Also, Kaala Bhairava and Rahul Sipligunj’s “Naatu Naatu” made a historic win in the Original Song category, becoming the first Indian film song to be nominated for and win the award. The song, a dance number in the Telugu language, was featured in the Indian blockbuster film “RRR.”

Overall, this year’s Oscars marked a rebound from the low ratings of the Covid-19 pandemic, with viewership rising 12% from last year’s drama-filled ceremony, during which actor Will Smith slapped comedian Chris Rock. Thankfully, this year’s Oscars was a return to normalcy and a memorable night, honoring achievements and making history.