With historic wins, saucy humor, surprise appearances, and unforgettable moments, the 2022 Academy Awards
The 2022 Academy Awards was one that winners, nominees, and viewers alike won’t soon forget.
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA – MARCH 27: Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs speaks onstage during the 94th Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on March 27, 2022 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)
With Will Packer in the driver’s seat as showrunner and Wanda Sykes, Regina Hall, and Amy Schumer hosting, the show’s production skewed more inclusive and exciting this year, with performances from the likes of Beyoncé and Megan Thee Stallion surprising and delighting attendees. Hall’s humorous hijinks were a major standout, and monumental first-time wins for Will Smith, Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, and Ariana DeBose cued viewers that these honors are keeping up with the progression of the film industry and diverse audience interests.
With the ceremony sure to be a hot topic on social for weeks to come, take a look at some of the most memorable melanated moments from the Academy’s big night.
Beyoncé Opens The Show
The Academy kicked off the evening’s festivities with a HUGE bang, with Beyoncé delivering a powerful and colorful performance of her Best Original Song nominee, “Be Alive” from the soundtrack to King Richard, live from the tennis courts in Compton where Venus & Serena trained to become tennis superstars. To cap it all off, Blue Ivy made a cameo among the dancers.
Amy Schumer, Wanda Sykes, Regina Hall Open The Show
The ladies – introduced by DJ Khaled – kicked off the show with a hilarious opening set featuring standout digs at LeBron James and jokes with Samuel L. Jackson, among others.
Daniel Kaluuya and H.E.R. Take The Stage
Lasy year’s Best Supporting Actor and Best Original Song winners from Judas and the Black Messiah graced the stage early in the show, with the songstress making sure to show off her brightly-colored gown and gorgeous natural hairstyle.
Ariana DeBose wins Best Supporting Actress
The actress became the first Afro-Latina, openly queer woman to win in the film industry’s highest honor for an actress in a supporting role. This is her season!
Regina Hall’s “COVID Protocols”
In a hilarious gag, Regina called for eligible men out of the audience for a “random” testing measure – a PCR test she said would involve her swabbing their mouths with her own – even cheekily suggesting Will Smith come get entangled in the action as well. She also gave Josh Brolin and Jason Momoa a good “COVID patdown” on the way out for good measure.
Wesley Snipes, Rosie Perez, and Woody Harrelson Reunite
With this year marking the 30th anniversary of their classic film White Men Can’t Jump, “Sidney,” “Gloria,” and “Billy” reunited to present the award for Best Cinematography at the 94th Annual Academy Awards.
Megan Thee Stallion Remixes Encanto
Bruno said it looked like rain…but it was actually Tina Snow, arriving on the scene to join the cast of Disney Pixar hit Encanto in an Oscars-reimagining of the infectious earworm Best Original Song nominee, “We Don’t Talk About Bruno.” She became the first-ever female rap performer in the history of the ceremony.
Simu Liu and Tiffany Haddish – Two ‘Superheroes’ Take The Stage
The Shang-Chi star and the actress and comedienne swapped jokes on stage while preparing to hand off Oscars honors.
Halle Bailey Takes Her Place Among The Disney Princesses
Lily James (Cinderella) and Naomi Scott (Princess Jasmine) welcomed Halle Bailey (Ariel) into the live-action Disney Princess fold.
Lupita Nyong’o and Ruth E. Carter Present The Award For Costume Design
Returning to the stage as the first-ever Black woman to win an Academy Award for her work in costume design, alongside an actress known for her impeccably edgy style, Ruth E. Carter discussed the impact of costuming in film.
Questlove Wins Best Documentary
“Summer of Soul” opened our eyes, swelled our pride in our creativity and perseverance, and won Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson his first-ever Oscar for bringing the experience to our screens.
Diddy Introduces The Cast Of The Godfather
Smoothing things over after a big moment, Diddy invited the crowd out to his afterparty for a good time before discussing the impact of the classic gangster flick upon its 50th anniversary.
Robert Glasper Leads Oscars Band, Alongside Sheila E., Adam Blackstone, and Travis Barker
The instrumental legends led the live music while DJ D-Nice held down the 1’s and 2’s during the upbeat ceremony.
Tyler Perry Honors Sidney Poitier
Kicking off the Oscars ceremony In Memoriam segment, Tyler Perry spoke to the impactful life and lasting legacy of Sidney Poitier, who we just lost early this year.
Jill Scott’s Inspirational Words
Jill Scott closed out the In Memoriam segment with a moving spoken-word piece as the gospel choir’s voices soared in a celebration of life.
Will Smith Wins Best Actor
After two previous nominations, Will Smith tearfully accepted the award for Best Actor for his life-changing role as Richard Smith. “In this time in my life, in this moment I am overwhelmed by what God is calling on me to do and be in this world,” he said.