Historic moments at Academy Awards as “Nomadland” takes top honours

Chloé Zhao first Chinese woman and first woman of colour to be awarded Best Director

Zoe Christen Jones, Caroline Linton – CBS News

The 93rd Academy Awards held Sunday offered a few historic moments, as Chloé Zhao became the first Chinese woman and the first woman of colour to be awarded Best Director for her work on “Nomadland,” which also took Best Picture.

Zhao beat out Emerald Fennell, nominated for “Promising Young Woman,” marking the first time two women were nominated in the directing category. “Nomadland” was only the second film directed by a woman to be named Best Picture.

Chloe Zhao — 93rd Academy Awards
In this video image provided by ABC, Chloe Zhao accepts the award for best director for “Nomadland” at the Oscars on Sunday, April 25, 2021.ABC VIA AP

Two of the stylists behind “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” became the first ever Black winners in the Makeup and Hair category. And Minari’s Yuh-Jung Youn became the first Korean and only the second Asian woman to win Best Supporting Actress — 63 years after Miyoshi Umeki’s award for “Sayonara.”

Steven Yeun of “Minari” was the first Asian American and Riz Ahmed of “Sound of Metal” the first Muslim to be nominated for Best Actor, though both lost to Anthony Hopkins, whose surprise win came for his work in “The Father.”

This year in Hollywood was anything but normal. With theatres across the country closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most of the movies were viewed on streaming services.

The ceremony had been delayed for two months, and broadcast this year without a host. Instead of opting for acceptance speeches via Zoom, the Oscars had two in-person locations: the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood and Union Station in downtown Los Angeles, and some overseas nominees participated from London and Paris. Attendees were tested for COVID-19 before the scaled-down ceremony. 

A full list of nominees and winners can be found here

banner image via Nomadland trailer