The 84th Academy Award ceremony has ended, and I have to say, for having a potentially unmemorable collection of films, the award ceremony to me seemed like one of the best. The ceremony moved along, it seemed relatively gimmick free (the throwback to the joy of movies sort of hit that gimmick point a few times, but I chalk it up to "theme" more than gimmick).
But I don't think it will be the best picture win for The Artist that is the big story, or the memorable moment from tonight's ceremony.
It won't even be the 5 Oscars won by Hugo -- yes, FIVE OSCAR WINS (art direction, cinematography, sound, sound editing, visual effects).
Instead it will be that with 17 Oscar nominations under her belt, Meryl Streep won her third Oscar. She won a supporting actress trophy in 1980 for Kramer vs. Kramer, and then in 1983 for Sophie's Choice. But since then it's been an unprecedented amount of award nominations without a win.
This has only reinforced the thought that the academy only wants to award an actress with two nominations. Katherine Hepburn has 4 wins, but beyond that there seems to be a ceiling for two wins with a handful of women with this honor (Bette Davis, Ingrid Bergman, Jane Fonda, Elizabeth Taylor, Olivia de Havilland, Glenda Jackson, Jodie Foster, Sally Field, Vivien Leigh, Louis Rainer, and Hilary Swank).
But this win for Meryl is historic - not to mention surprising since best actress precursor love clearly rested with Viola Davis, especially with her Screen Actors Guild win.
Beyond that, props to Billy Crystal and Brian Grazer for hosting and producing in a way that kept the night moving forward and the event classy.