The 77th Academy Awards honored the best films of 2004 and were held on February 27, 2005, at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, California. They were hosted by comedian Chris Rock.
The nominees were announced on January 25, 2005. Martin Scorsese's biopic of the eccentric Howard Hughes, The Aviator, led the pack with eleven nominations including Best Actor, Best Director, and Best Picture. Marc Forster's Finding Neverland and Clint Eastwood's Million Dollar Baby each had seven nominations. Ray and Sideways rounded out the nominees for Best Picture.
The 77th Academy Awards was the first Oscar telecast since the 73rd Academy Awards to receive a TV rating of TV-14. This is most likely due to many "edgy" comments made by Chris Rock during the ceremony. Since this, every future telecast to date would receive a TV-14 rating.
Hilary Swank won her second Academy Award for Best Actress; among her fellow nominees was Annette Bening, who had also been nominated when Swank won her first award in 1999.
At age 74 Clint Eastwood became the oldest director to win the Oscar. This was also the second straight year that he directed two Academy Award-winning performances.
With The Aviator winning 5 Oscars, this was the last Oscar ceremony until the 2013 ceremony at which another film won more Oscars than the Best Picture winner. The last time this had happened was either in 1981 (Raiders of the Lost Ark) or in 1977 (Star Wars), depending on whether one counts the Special Achievement Award that Raiders received for its sound effects editing as a true win. In addition, Cate Blanchett won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Katharine Hepburn in The Aviator, marking the only time in Academy Awards history that an actor won an Oscar for portraying an Oscar-winning actor.
Winners are listed first and highlighted in boldface.
|Best Picture||Best Director|
|Best Actor||Best Actress|
|Best Supporting Actor||Best Supporting Actress|
|Best Original Screenplay||Best Adapted Screenplay|
|Best Animated Feature||Best Foreign Language Film|
|Best Documentary Feature||Best Documentary Short|
|Best Live Action Short||Best Animated Short|
|Best Original Score||Best Original Song|
|Best Sound Editing||Best Sound Mixing|
|Best Art Direction||Best Cinematography|
|Best Makeup||Best Costume Design|
|Best Film Editing||Best Visual Effects|
Multiple nominations and awards
The following 22 films received multiple nominations:
- Eleven: The Aviator
- Seven: Finding Neverland and Million Dollar Baby
- Six: Ray
- Five: Sideways
- Four: The Incredibles and Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events
- Three: Hotel Rwanda, The Passion of the Christ, The Phantom of the Opera, The Polar Express, Spider-Man 2, and Vera Drake
- Two: The Chorus, Closer, Collateral, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, The Motorcycle Diaries, The Sea Inside, Shrek 2, and A Very Long Engagement
The following four films received multiple awards:
Academy Award ceremony presenters and performers
Presenters and performers
|Drew Barrymore||Presenter||Presented Best Original Song nominee: "Look To Your Path (Vois Sur Ton Chemin)"|
|Annette Bening||Presenter||Presented the In Memoriam tribute|
|Halle Berry||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Art Direction-Set Decoration|
|Brad Bird||Presenter||Co-presented the Oscar for Costume Design as the voice of Edna from The Incredibles|
|Cate Blanchett||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Make-Up|
|Orlando Bloom||Presenter||Co-presented the Oscar for Film Editing|
|Pierce Brosnan||Presenter||Co-presented the Oscar for Costume Design|
|Sean "Diddy" Combs||Presenter||Presented the Best Original Song nominee "Believe"|
|Penélope Cruz||Presenter||Co-presented the Oscars for Sound Mixing, Sound Editing|
|Leonardo DiCaprio||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Documentary Feature|
|Kirsten Dunst||Presenter||Co-presented the award for Film Editing|
|Josh Groban||Performer||Performed the song "Believe"|
|Jake Gyllenhaal||Presenter||Co-presented the Oscar for Visual Effects|
|Salma Hayek||Presenter||Co-presented the Oscars for Sound Mixing, Sound Editing and presented the original song nominee "Al Otro lado Del Rio"|
|Dustin Hoffman||Presenter||Co-presented the Academy Award for Best Picture of the Year|
|Jeremy Irons||Presenter||Presented the award for Best Live Action Short Film|
|Samuel L. Jackson||Presenter||Presented award for Best Original Screenplay|
|Scarlett Johansson||Presenter||Host of the Scientific and Technical Awards Banquet|
|Beyoncé Knowles||Performer||Performed the nominated songs "Believe", "Learn to Be Lonely" and "Look To Your Path"|
|Laura Linney||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Best Animated Short|
|Yo-Yo Ma||Performer||Performed a musical piece for the In Memoriam segment|
|Mike Myers||Presenter||Presented the original song nominee "Accidentally in Love"|
|Al Pacino||Presenter||Presented the Honorary Award to Sidney Lumet|
|Gwyneth Paltrow||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film|
|Sean Penn||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Best Actress in a Leading Role|
|Natalie Portman||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Best Documentary Short|
|Prince||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Best Original Song|
|Tim Robbins||Performer||Presented the award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role|
|Julia Roberts||Performer||Presented the award for Best Director|
|Emmy Rossum||Presenter||Presented the original song nominee "Learn to Be Lonely"|
|Adam Sandler||Presenter||Presented the award for Best Adapted Screenplay|
|Martin Scorsese||Presenter||Presented the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award to Roger Mayer|
|Barbra Streisand||Presenter||Presented the Academy Award for Best Picture of the Year|
|Charlize Theron||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role|
|John Travolta||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Best Original Score|
|Robin Williams||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Animated Feature Film|
|Kate Winslet||Presenter||Presented the Oscar for Best Cinematography|
|Renée Zellweger||Performers||Presented the Oscar for Best Actor in a Supporting Role|
|Zhang Ziyi||Presenter||Co-presented the Oscar for Best Visual Effects|
A special tribute to past host Johnny Carson was presented by host Chris Rock with previous emcee Whoopi Goldberg discussing Carson's legacy to television and the Academy Awards in the segment.
Presented by Annette Bening with a musical solo by Yo-Yo Ma, the Academy recognizes those motion picture contributors that passed away in the previous year. In the order that they appear, the following actors and artists were featured: former president Ronald Reagan, Peter Ustinov, Carrie Snodgress, director Dan Petrie Sr., composer David Raksin, Fay Wray, film agent Phil Gersh, composer Elmer Bernstein, writer Carole Eastman, animator Frank Thomas, director Russ Meyer, Jerry Orbach, film editor Ralph E. Winters, writer Robert E. Thompson, Howard Keel, Janet Leigh, Christopher Reeve, Ossie Davis, producer Jerry Bick, Mercedes McCambridge, producer/writer William Sackheim, cinematographer Ed Di Gullio, writer Nelson Gidding, Paul Winfield, director Philippe de Broca, composer Jerry Goldsmith, Rodney Dangerfield, Virginia Mayo, Tony Randall and Marlon Brando.
News and recap
- As of February 27, 2005, the field of Best Picture nominees did not include a bonafide blockbuster at the U.S. box office. For the first time in 20 years, and what would continue for the next few years, none of the nominees for Best Picture was among the year's top ten releases in box office at the time of the nominations, and as a group they most probably had the lowest box-office performance of any Best Picture field in history. To date, The Aviator was the highest earner with $93.7 million in domestic box office receipts, and ranked as the 24th highest grosser of 2004. It was followed by Ray at $74.9 million and Million Dollar Baby at $64.7 million.
- There was a considerable amount of controversy surrounding the omission of political-themed documentaries from the Best Documentary Feature Film category. However, this was not necessarily an oversight on the part of the Academy, as many of the candidates were rendered ineligible.
- Fahrenheit 9/11 was intentionally withheld from submission in the Best Documentary Feature Film category by producer Michael Moore, in hopes of affecting the 2004 presidential election by airing it on broadcast television. Under rules established by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, documentaries shown on television within nine months of their theatrical release are ineligible for the documentary Oscar. Instead Moore submitted it for the Best Picture category which does not have that same rule.
- Popular political documentaries Control Room and The Corporation were rendered ineligible by the fact that they had been broadcast in their entirety on network television within 9 months of their U.S. theatrical release.
- The popular The Motorcycle Diaries was not selected by any country as its official nomination for Best Foreign Language Film, as the crew, director, cast and filming locations were all affiliated with different nations. As it had no specific country of origin, no country was willing to make it their official selection for the category.
- When Chris Rock makes his introduction, the music accompanying him is a slightly jazzed up version of Brad Fiedel's theme from The Terminator.
- The ceremony attracted an average audience of 42.14 million, down three percent from the preceding year. However, the target age 18-49 demographic ratings stood at 16.84, higher with the preceding year's 15.68.
- During one segment, Rock asked "Who is this guy?" in reference to actor Jude Law who seemingly appeared in every movie Rock had seen that year and implied Law was a low-rent Tom Cruise (he made a joke about filmmakers rushing production and being unable to get the actors they want: "If you want Tom Cruise and all you can get is Jude Law, wait [to make the film]!") . Nearly two hours later, a defensive Sean Penn took the stage to present and said, "In answer to our host's question, Jude Law is one of our finest young actors." (At the time, Penn and Law were shooting All the King's Men.) This was later mocked on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart impersonating Penn explaining old jokes like airline peanuts. Law was not the only actor that Rock poked fun at that evening, however—he turned the joke on himself at one point, saying "if you want Denzel [Washington] and all you can get is me, wait!"