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Academy Awards

Oscars monologue: 'We have nominees from every corner of Dublin here tonight'

Jimmy Kimmel also said: “Five Irish actors are nominated tonight, which means the odds of a fight onstage just went way up.”

LAST UPDATE | 13 Mar 2023

IN HIS OPENING monologue at the 95th Academy Awards this morning, Jimmy Kimmel took aim at the Irish – not once, but twice. 

“It was some year for inclusion at the Oscars, we have nominees from every corner of Dublin here tonight,” he said, before adding: 

“Five Irish actors are nominated tonight, which means the odds of a fight onstage just went way up.”

The cameras cut to the stars of the Banshees of Inisherin, all of whom seemed to take the jokes well – with Brendan Gleeson making a fist to the camera and Colin Farrell mock fighting with his son. 

Unfortunately, the Irish nominees had no luck in the two supporting actor categories that have been given out this evening. Barry Keoghan and Brendan Gleeson lost out to Ke Huy Quan, while Kerry Condon seemed delighted to hear Jamie Lee Curtis’s name announced as the winner of the best supporting actress Oscar. 

But there was more success for Northern Irish film An Irish Goodbye, taking home the gong for Best Live Action Short, while visual effects designer Richard Baneham of Tallaght, Dublin scooped his second ever Oscar for Best Visual Effects for his work on Avatar: The Way of Water.

Baneham opened his speech with “Go raibh míle maith agat”. 

Earlier today, Saturday Night Live came under fire from Irish viewers for using stereotypes in an Oscars skit

That controversy was referred to later in the evening after Kimmel asked Colin Farrell on behalf of a ‘viewer’ what he was saying in the Banshees of Inisherin movie. Farrell quickly referred him to the SNL sketch. 

Aside from the jabs at Irish stereotypes, the infamous slap from last year’s ceremony was the biggest vehicle for Kimmel’s humour. 

The Slap

At last year’s Oscars, Will Smith suddenly stormed the stage and smacked comedian Chris Rock, who had made an off-color joke about Smith’s wife, the actor Jada Pinkett Smith.

It was, of course, the talk of the town – and the world – in the days following that ceremony, and it returned to dominate the one-liners this morning. 

“If any of you get mad at a joke and decide you want to get jiggy with it — it’s not going to be easy,” vowed Kimmel, referring to a classic line from one of Smith’s hit songs.

The hypothetical perpetrator would have to get past a bevy of superheroes, Kimmel joked, including the Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal), Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield), and “the Fabel…man” (Steven Spielberg).

There will be no nonsense tonight. We have no time for shenanigans.

“If anyone in this theater commits an act of violence at any point during the show, you will be awarded the Oscar for best actor and permitted to give a 19-minute-long speech,” Kimmel quipped.

But a few minutes later, he got serious: “We want you to have fun, we want you to feel safe, and most important, we want me to feel safe.”

Later on, he said: “The next movie is documentary feature, which is where we had that little skirmish last year,” Kimmel said.

“Hopefully this time, it goes off without a hitch. Or at least without Hitch,” he said, referring to a Smith film.

And then midway through the event, he launched: “This point in the show kind of makes you miss the slapping a little, right?”

With reporting from AFP 

For more coverage of the Oscars, follow our liveblog here 

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