Anthony Hopkins paid tribute to Chadwick Boseman in his belated Best Actor acceptance speech. In the final award reveal of the 93rd Annual Academy Awards on Sunday night, Anthony Hopkins was named Best Actor for his performance in The Father. This prompted great criticism from fans as many were expecting Boseman to posthumously take the win for Ma Rainey's Black Bottom.
Anthony Hopkins wasn't present in Los Angeles to personally accept the award, but he has since posted an acceptance speech on Instagram. In the video, Hopkins speaks from near his home in Wales to accept the award while revealing that he's both grateful and surprised for the win. He also takes the time to speak about Chadwick Boseman, making sure the late actor gets recognition as well. You can watch the video below.
Here's what Hopkins has to say in the speech:
"Good morning. Here I am in my homeland in Wales, and at 83 years of age, I did not expect to get this award, I really didn't. I'm very grateful to the Academy, and thank you. And I want to pay tribute to Chadwick Boseman, who was taken from us far too early. And, again, thank you all very much. I really did not expect this. So, I feel very privileged and honored. Thank you."
It didn't help at the Oscars that the Best Actor announcement was moved to the final award reveal of the night instead of Best Picture, something that hasn't happened at the show in decades. The change led many to believe that the event was planning to close the night with a tribute to Boseman after posthumously awarding him Best Actor. While not taking away from Hopkins' tremendous performance in The Father, thousands of fans were disappointed to see Boseman miss out on his one and only chance to get an Oscar.
The ending of the Oscars ceremony, which many critics have labeled as "anticlimactic," is also getting compared to how the show ended in 2017. Four years ago, Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway appeared as presenters to announce La La Land as Best Picture in the night's final award reveal. While the cast and crew were onstage to accept the award, it was revealed that the envelopes had been mixed up, and Moonlight was in fact the winner.
It's not quite the same thing, but the complaint from many Boseman fans is that moving Best Actor to the final reveal of the evening created certain expectations. In hindsight, perhaps Best Picture should have been announced last, as has been tradition for years. In any case, there are some fans saying that the move is an even bigger flub than the infamous 2017 La La Land/Moonlight incident, as this was something that was planned.
"Congratulations to the people who did the La La Land/Moonlight thing on no longer having been the biggest f**kups in Oscars history," one popular tweet reads.
"This #Oscars ending was worse than the La La Land / Moonlight fiasco," says someone else. "This was ball on the one yard line and throwing an interception."
Making a reference only Nintendo fans will understand, another tweet by The Gregory Brothers says, "La La Land vs. Moonlight ending was Mario. This year's ending was Wario."
Steven Zeitchik of The Washington Post puts it: "Hopkins beating Boseman, and then not even bothering to be there to make a speech so the show just ends, is one of the strangest finishes to an Oscars I've ever seen. And I was in the room when theLa La Land fiasco happened."
A popular tweet by Charlotte Clymer says, "Wait, did the Academy hold Best Actor until the end because they assumed Chadwick Boseman would posthumously (and rightly) win and then he didn't, so they're like 'WELP, good night!'"
In any case, the Oscars winners left many viewers unsatisfied on Sunday night. Still, Boseman's fans have been praising the late actor and his work regardless of the Best Actor loss. Meanwhile, others are also pointing out that Hopkins' performance was just as Oscar-worthy as Boseman's. You can check out the complete list of winners at the official website for the Oscars.