Oscars 2020: 7 Big Firsts From This Year's Academy Awards

And one 'accolade' that a certain star won't be celebrating.

1. First up, the big one: Parasite is the first non-English-language film to ever be awarded Best Picture at the Oscars

It’s taken 92 years, but Parasite is the first film that isn’t in English to receive the top honour at the Academy Awards. Parasite had already made history as the first South Korean film to be nominated in that category, too.

2. Bong Joon-ho is also the first South Korean filmmaker to win Best Director and Best Original Screenplay

South Korean film director Bong Joon Ho poses with his engraved awards as he attends the 92nd Oscars Governors Ball.
South Korean film director Bong Joon Ho poses with his engraved awards as he attends the 92nd Oscars Governors Ball.

In his acceptance speech, the director paid homage to fellow nominees Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino, for inspiring and championing his work, respectively. He also made what we assume was an accidental Mean Girls reference, when he said he wished he could cut the award into five and share it with the rest of the nominees.

3. Taika Waititi is the first Māori person to win an Academy Award

Taika Waititi, winner of Best Adapted Screenplay for Jojo Rabbit
Taika Waititi, winner of Best Adapted Screenplay for Jojo Rabbit

Originally from New Zealand, the Jojo Rabbit director is also the first indigenous filmmaker to win an Oscar, after picking up Best Adapted Screenplay. Singer Buffy Sainte-Marie was the first indigenous person to ever win an Academy Award in 1982, triumphing in the Best Original Song category.

After winning his award, Taika dedicated it to indigenous children around the world who want to create art.

4. Hildur Guðnadóttir is the first Icelandic person to ever win an Oscar

Hildur Guðnadóttir accepts the Music - Original Score - award for Joker.
Hildur Guðnadóttir accepts the Music - Original Score - award for Joker.

It’s been a busy few months for Hildur, who has picked up an Emmy, a Golden Globe and a Grammy for her work on both the TV series Chernobyl and the hit film Joker.

She was awarded Best Original Score for her musical contributions to Todd Phillips’ film, becoming only the fourth woman to emerge triumphant in this category.

After accepting her award, she dedicated it “to the girls, to the women, to the mothers, to the daughters who hear the music bubbling within”, urging them: “Please speak up, we need to hear your voices.”

5. Brad Pitt finally has an acting Oscar

Brad Pitt waits for his award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role to be engraved as he attends the 92nd Oscars Governors Ball.
Brad Pitt waits for his award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role to be engraved as he attends the 92nd Oscars Governors Ball.

It’s been 24 years since Brad Pitt was first nominated for an Academy Award, for his performance in 12 Monkeys.

Since then, he’s been nominated a further three times in the Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor categories, but 2020 would finally be the year he would land a win, after his performance in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon A Time In Hollywood.

Brad does already have an Oscar, though, as he was one of the producers of 12 Years A Slave, which won Best Picture in 2014.

6. And Bernie Taupin has had his first win too

Elton John and Bernie Taupin with their Best Original Song Oscar for in the press room at the 92nd Academy Awards.
Elton John and Bernie Taupin with their Best Original Song Oscar for in the press room at the 92nd Academy Awards.

Although Elton John already had an Academy Award, his usual songwriting partner did not, as the chart-topping musician’s contributions to the Lion King soundtrack saw him team up with musical theatre composer Tim Rice.

This is no longer the case, though, with Elton and Bernie’s new song for the biopic Rocketman being awarded Best Original Song at the Oscars in 2020.

“This is justification for 53 years of hammering it out,” Bernie said, noting that it was a fitting moment as Rocketman essentially told the story of their friendship and professional relationship.

7. Laura Dern has earned Netflix its first ever acting award

Laura Dern poses with her engraved award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Marriage Story. 
Laura Dern poses with her engraved award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Marriage Story. 

The streaming service has had some success at the Oscars in the last few years, with Roma being awarded Best Foreign Film and Best Director, Icarus receiving Best Documentary Feature and two past wins in the Best Documentary Short category.

In 2020, Laura Dern probably earned Netflix its most high-profile Oscars victory yet, bagging Best Supporting Actress for her performance in Marriage Story.

This also marks Laura’s first win at the Oscars, after receiving her first nomination in 1992.

But there’s one big first that’s proved to still be out of reach...

Diane Warren now holds a record for most Oscar nominations without a win

US songwriter Diane Warren.
US songwriter Diane Warren.

Following her recognition in this year’s Best Original Song category, Diane now has 11 nominations without ever having won an Oscar, more than any other woman in history.

The songwriter’s first nomination was back in the late 1980s, for her contribution to the Mannequin soundtrack, and since then she’s been nominated for collaborations with Lady Gaga, Celine Dion, Gloria Estefan and Aerosmith, but none of them have resulted in an Academy Award.

Still, there’s always next year, right?

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