Oscars 2016: Aussies scoop the pool and Leo ‘finally’ wins the top gong

AUSSIES swept the Academy Awards this year in the technical departments but Cate Blanchett missed out on a best actress gong for Carol.

George Miller’s long-gestating and troubled production Mad Max: Fury Road picked up six golden statues out of its 10 nominations.

The film was awarded the coveted accolade for film editing (Margaret Sixel), costume design (Jenny Beavan), makeup and hairstyling (Lesley Vanderwalt, Elka Wardega and Damian Martin), sound mixing (Chris Jenkins, Gregg Rudloff and Ben Osmo), sound editing (Mark A. Mangini and David White) and production design (Colin Gibson – production design and Lisa Thompson – set decoration).

Leaving many shocked, the film and its director failed to win over voters in the best film and director categories, however.

In a twist many did not expect, Spotlight was crowned the best film of 2015 over favourites The Revenant and The Big Short while Alejandro G. Iñárritu won best director for helming The Revenant.

He won the same category last year for Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), making him the third director in the academy’s history to win back to back awards.

“Our Cate” missed out taking home the gold with the academy voters giving the award to Brie Larson for her role in Room.

There was a chorus of “finally” when Leonardo DiCaprio was awarded the best actor award for his role in The Revenant, his fifth nomination for acting (he was also nominated for best film for his producing credit on The Wolf of Wall Street).

The USA’s biggest grossing film in history Star Wars: The Force Awakens failed to pick up any awards out of five nominations.

Host Chris Rock made the ceremony about the lack of diversity in the nominations this year, which was dubbed Oscars So White, drawing attention to the elephant in the room from the opening monologue and between every award presented.

Attendees applauded (sometimes awkwardly) his jokes and observations but a gag involving long forgotten Clueless star Stacey Dash tanked.

The winners:

Best Picture:

Spotlight – Winner

The Big Short

Bridge of Spies

Brooklyn

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Room

Actor in a leading role:

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant – Winner

Bryan Cranston, Trumbo

Matt Damon, The Martian

Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs

Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl

Actress in a leading role:

Brie Larson, Room – Winner

Cate Blanchett, Carol

Jennifer Lawrence, Joy

Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years

Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

Actor in a supporting role:

Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies – Winner

Christian Bale, The Big Short

Tom Hardy, The Revenant

Mark Ruffalo, Spotlilm:

Inside Out – Winner

Anomalisa

Boy and the World

Shaun the Sheep Movie

When Marnie Was There

Directing:

The Revenant – Winner

The Big Short

Mad Max: Fury Road

Room

Spotlight

Foreign language film:

Son of Saul – Winner

Embrace of the Serpent

Mustang

Theeb

A War

Writing (Adapted screenplay):

The Big Short – Winner

Brooklyn

Carol

The Martian

Room

Writing (Original screenplay):

Spotlight – Winner

Bridge of Spies

Ex Machina

Inside Out

Straight Outta Compton