Oscars: Jimmy Kimmel Calls Out Greta Gerwig ‘Barbie’ Directing Snub

During his monologue for the 2024 Oscars, host Jimmy Kimmel was quick to call out the Film Academy for failing to nominate Greta Gerwig for Barbie.

“It was a hard year but it was also a great year for movies despite the fact that everything stopped,” Kimmel reflected, alluding to the 2023 actors and writers strikes.

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“Here we are all dressed up celebrating the best of the best beginning with Barbie,” Kimmel said, describing the film starring Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling as a “monster hit.”

“What an achievement to take a plastic doll no one even liked anymore… Now Barbie is a feminist icon thanks to Greta Gerwig who many believe deserved to be nominated for best director,” Kimmel added. After the audience erupted into an applause Kimmel quipped, “I know you’re clapping, but you’re the ones who didn’t vote for her by the way. Don’t act like you had nothing to do with this.”

Meanwhile, Kimmel reiterated to stars Gosling and Robbie that even if neither win for the film, they still won something more important: The “genetic lottery.” “Ryan you are so hot. Let’s go camping together and not tell our wives.”

When discussing the film Oppenheimer, Kimmel poked fun at director Christopher Nolan who has openly said he writes all of his scripts on a computer that has no internet which Kimmel said, “is a powerful way to say I will not let my porn addiction get in the way of my work.”

As for star and nominee Robert Downey Jr., Kimmel said that though this marked the “highest point of his career” it might not be, alluding to his struggles with addiction years ago. “This is the highest point of Robert Downey Jr.’s long and illustrious career. Well, one of the highest points,” he said.

“Is that an acceptance speech in your pocket or do you have a very rectangular penis?” Kimmel also asked Downey Jr.

Kimmel also poked fun at Downey Jr. for when he played a villain in the Tim Allen-starrer The Shaggy Dog and said that if he were to remake that film, the dog Messi from Anatomy of a Fall should take over the Allen role before cutting to show the dog in the audience. Messi made a brief surprise appearance during Downey Jr.’s acceptance speech and the ceremony ended with a clip of Messi seemingly peeing on Matt Damon’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (Kimmel and Damon have maintained a long-running joke that they’re feuding.)

Bradley Cooper, who is nominated for Maestro, once again brought his mom as his date to the ceremony, something Kimmel questioned: “How many times can one bring his mom as his date before he is actually dating his mom? Are you working on a movie about Freud right now and not telling us?”

Of the films nominated this year, Kimmel pointed out that they were “too long” and when he watched Killers of the Flower Moon he had to get his “mail forwarded to the theater.” “You could drive to Oklahoma and solve the killings yourself,” he said. He also joked of Killers of the Flower Moon nominee De Niro that fellow nominee Jodie Foster — both were nominated in 1976 for Taxi — is “20 years too old to be his girlfriend.”

At the end of his monologue, Kimmel took a moment to address the IATSE contract negotiations and the possibility of an impending strike. He welcomed the below-the-line- crew to the stage and told them onstage, “Know that in your upcoming negotiations we will stand with you.”

“The reason we were able to make a deal is because of the people who rallied around and beside us. And before we celebrate ourselves, let’s have a very well deserved round of applause for the people who work behind the scenes: the teamsters, the truck drivers, sound engineers, gaffers, grips, all of the crew,” he said.

Later on in the show, Kimmel enlisted help from John Cena for a segment before the costume design category was to be presented.

Kimmel noted how at the 1974 Oscars, David Niven was introducing Elizabeth Taylor when a streaker ran across the stage. “Can you imagine if a nude man ran across the stage today?” Kimmel paused, before adding. “I said can you imagine if a nude man ran across the stage today? Wouldn’t that be crazy?”

A seemingly naked Cena then popped his head out from behind the stage to tell Kimmel, “I don’t want to do the streaker bit…. You should feel ashamed right now for suggesting such a tasteless idea.”

When Kimmel noted that Cena wrestled naked, Cena argued that he wrestled while wearing jorts. “Jorts are worse than naked,” Kimmel responded.

A frustrated Kimmel then told Cena to at least present the next category, leaving Cena to walk onstage trying to hide himself with the envelope. “Costumes, they are so important. Maybe the most important thing there is…. I can’t open the envelope,” he said before Kimmel then joined the stage again to take over.

Towards the end of the ceremony, Kimmel informed the audience that because they were ahead of schedule and had some time to pass, he wanted to read a review written by former President Donald Trump on Kimmel’s hosting duties.

“Has there EVER been a WORSE HOST than Jimmy Kimmel at The Oscars,” the post read. “His opening was that of a less than average person trying too hard to be something which he is not, and never can be.”

The post continued, “Get rid of Kimmel and perhaps replace him with another washed up, but cheap, ABC ‘talent,’ George Slopanopoulos. He would make everybody on stage look bigger, stronger, and more glamorous. Also a really bad politically correct show tonight, and for years – Disjointed, boring, and very unfair. Why don’t they just give the Oscars to those that deserve them. Maybe that way their audience and TV ratings will come back from the depths. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”

As the audience laughed, Kimmel asked, “See if you could guess which former president just posted that on? Anyone?”

“Thank you President Trump. Thank you for watching. Isn’t it past your jail time?” Kimmel asked as the audience cheered. “He’s focused on the important stuff for sure.”

The 2024 Oscars began six minutes late on Sunday when pro-Palestine protesters stopped traffic en route to the ceremony. Kimmel addressed the late start time in his monologue: “The show as you know is starting an hour early but don’t worry it will still end very very late. In fact we’re already five minutes over and I’m not joking.”

Ahead of the ceremony, A-list stars and others in attendance were greeted with snack boxes placed under each seat inside the Dolby Theatre from Kimmel. Inside the boxes were Shappy Pretzel and mustard, Mike & Ike’s candy, Open Water and a note from the host that read, “To keep the karma flowing, we made donations on your behalf to St. Joseph Center.” During the telecast, Kimmel’s Jimmy Kimmel Live! right-hand man Guillermo also treated guests with tequila.

Sunday’s ceremony marked Kimmel’s fourth time as the night’s emcee. When speaking to The Hollywood Reporter about taking the stage once again, the late-night host reiterated that he follows advice he received from Billy Crystal: “You’ve got to kill in the room, and it makes sense because if nobody’s laughing, it’s not going to seem funny to the audience at home.”

When preparing jokes, Kimmel said he wasn’t “interested in hurting anyone’s feelings, but sometimes some people are more sensitive than others and you just have to accept that. You can’t build your monologue around that. And I’m not looking to say anything mean, but not everybody’s going to love all the jokes.”

Ahead of this year’s show, Nolan’s Oppenheimer led the nominations with 13 followed by Poor Things with 11, Killers of the Flower Moon with 10 and Barbie with eight.

Among those making history and setting records with their noms were Lily Gladstone, who is the first Native American acting nominee; Martin Scorsese, who is now the most nominated living movie director; and Emma Stone, who is eyeing two possible Oscar wins for Poor Things as an actress and producer.

Famed musicians like John Williams and Diane Warren continue making their mark on the Academy — adding to their existing achievements while continuing their reigns as the most decorated nominated people in their respective categories.

On the director side, this year’s best picture race is fronted by three women filmmakers vying for the coveted best picture prize, including Justine Triet’s Anatomy of a Fall, Gerwig’s Barbie and Celine Song’s Past Lives.

The 96th Oscars was televised live on Sunday from the Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood on ABC and in more than 200 territories worldwide.

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