2014 Oscars Winners: '12 Years a Slave' Takes Best Picture

2014 Oscars Ellen selfie
Ellen DeGeneres' selfie that briefly broke Twitter

The 2014 Oscar Awards have been handed out and it to no real surprise... there were few surprises as 12 Years a Slave took home Best Picture as well as Best Supporting Actress (Lupita Nyong'o) and Best Adapted Screenplay (John Ridley) while Gravity, unsurprisingly, ended up taking home the night's largest number of wins with seven, none bigger than a Best Director win for Alfonso Cuaron.

In the acting categories the only category that seemed up for grabs was Supporting Actress, but as I said, that went to Lupita, which may have something to do with Jennifer Lawrence wearing red... I learned on E! that no one wearing red has ever won the Oscar. Yeah, that's hard-hitting journalism right there.

Dallas Buyers Club co-stars Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto won Best Actor and Supporting Actor respectively while Cate Blanchett took home her second Oscar, winning Best Actress for Blue Jasmine.

One of the categories that could have gone either way, Original Screenplay, went to Spike Jonze for Her, which ultimately left American Hustle empty-handed for the night, most likely playing second place in more than one category.

Here's how the winner totals ultimately broke down:

  1. Gravity (7 Oscars)
  2. 12 Years a Slave (3 Oscars)
  3. Dallas Buyers Club (3 Oscars)
  4. The Great Gatsby (2 Oscars)
  5. Frozen (2 Oscars)
  6. Blue Jasmine (1 Oscar)
  7. Her (1 Oscar)
  8. 20 Feet from Stardom (1 Oscar)
  9. The Great Beauty (1 Oscar)

I will do a lengthier write up, recap and reaction piece in the morning so for now here are your nominees with the winners highighted in bold red text. I've also included a poll at the bottom of the article asking for your overall thoughts on the night.

Share your favorite moments in the comments and any other thoughts you may have concerning the winners and how the night ended up.

Best Picture
  • American Hustle
  • Captain Phillips
  • Dallas Buyers Club
  • Gravity
  • Her
  • Nebraska
  • Philomena
  • 12 Years a Slave
  • The Wolf of Wall Street
Best Actor
  • Christian Bale (American Hustle)
  • Bruce Dern (Nebraska)
  • Leonardo DiCaprio (The Wolf of Wall Street)
  • Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave)
  • Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club)
Best Actress
  • Amy Adams (American Hustle)
  • Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine)
  • Sandra Bullock (Gravity)
  • Judi Dench (Philomena)
  • Meryl Streep (August: Osage County)
Best Supporting Actor
  • Barkhad Abdi (Captain Phillips)
  • Bradley Cooper (American Hustle)
  • Michael Fassbender (12 Years a Slave)
  • Jonah Hill (The Wolf of Wall Street)
  • Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club)
Best Supporting Actress
  • Jennifer Lawrence (American Hustle)
  • Sally Hawkins (Blue Jasmine)
  • Lupita Nyong'o (12 Years a Slave)
  • Julia Roberts (August: Osage County)
  • June Squibb (Nebraska)
Best Director
  • David O. Russell (American Hustle)
  • Alfonso Cuaron (Gravity)
  • Alexander Payne (Nebraska)
  • Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave)
  • Martin Scorsese (The Wolf of Wall Street)
Writing (Adapted Screenplay)
  • Rchard Linklater, Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy (Before Midnight)
  • Billy Ray (Captain Phillips)
  • Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope (Philomena)
  • John Ridley (12 Years a Slave)
  • Terence Winter (The Wolf of Wall Street)
Writing (Original Screenplay)
  • Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell (American Hustle)
  • Woody Allen (Blue Jasmine)
  • Craig Borten and Melisa Wallack (Dallas Buyers Club)
  • Spike Jonze (Her)
  • Bob Nelson (Nebraska)
Animated Feature Film
  • The Croods
  • Despicable Me 2
  • Ernest & Celestine
  • Frozen
  • The Wind Rises
Documentary (Feature)
  • The Act of Killing
  • Cutie and the Boxer
  • Dirty Wars
  • The Square
  • 20 Feet from Stardom
Foreign Language Film
  • The Broken Circle Breakdown
  • The Great Beauty
  • The Hunt
  • The Missing Picture
  • Omar
  • Philippe Le Sourd (The Grandmaster)
  • Emmanuel Lubezki (Gravity)
  • Bruno Delbonnel (Inside Llewyn Davis)
  • Phedon Papamichael (Nebraska)
  • Roger Deakins (Prisoners)
Film Editing
  • American Hustle
  • Captain Phillips
  • Dallas Buyers Club
  • Gravity
  • 12 Years a Slave
Music (Original Score)
  • John Williams (The Book Thief)
  • Steven Price (Gravity)
  • William Butler and Owen Pallett (Her)
  • Alexandre Desplat (Philomena)
  • Thomas Newman (Saving Mr. Banks)
Music (Original Song)
  • "Alone Yet Not Alone" from Alone Yet Not Alone
  • "Happy" from Despicable Me 2
  • "Let It Go" from Frozen
  • "The Moon Song" from Her
  • "Ordinary Love" from Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom
Sound Mixing
  • Captain Phillips
  • Gravity
  • The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
  • Lone Survivor
  • Inside Llewyn Davis
Sound Editing
  • All is Lost
  • Captain Phillips
  • Gravity
  • The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
  • Lone Survivor
Production Design
  • American Hustle
  • Gravity
  • The Great Gatsby
  • Her
  • 12 Years a Slave
Visual Effects
  • Gravity
  • The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
  • Iron Man 3
  • The Lone Ranger
  • Star Trek into Darkness
  • American Hustle
  • The Grandmaster
  • The Great Gatsby
  • The Invisible Woman
  • 12 Years a Slave
Makeup and Hairstyling
  • Dallas Buyers Club
  • Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa
  • The Lone Ranger
Best Documentary Short Subject
  • CaveDiger
  • Facing Fear
  • Karama Has No Walls
  • The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life
  • Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall
Best Short Film (Animated)
  • Feral
  • Get a Horse!
  • Mr. Hublot
  • Possessions
  • Room on the Broom
Best Short Film (Live Action)
  • Aquel No Era Yo (That Wasn't Me)
  • Avant Que De Tout Perdre (Just Before Losing Everything)
  • Helium
  • Pitääkö Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?)
  • The Voorman Problem

I will have more to say in the morning, but for now let your opinion known in the comments and in the poll below.

What did you think of the 2014 Oscars?

View Results

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  • Shane O’Neal

    I can't wait to buy Adele Dazim's album. It'll be the best ever.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Chris/ Chris

    12 Years wasn't even in my top 15 of the year. A good movie, but for me kinda forgettable. Years from now I'll be thinking about Wolf, Her, and Gravity. Overall, a really predictable boring night. I think the only movie I was really passionate about was Her so Jonze winning was the highlight for me.

  • thebioscopist

    I have to say Brad, I was very satisfied with these Awards....no surprises, no controversies, and very happy for the people that won.

  • TheOneWhoKnocks

    22 out of 24 right, but the show just dragged on. Still, not too bad. Just extra draggy.

    Anyone notice how John Ridley and Steve McQueen didn't thank one another in their respective speeches? Didn't even shake hands. (Peter Travers pointed this out on Twitter.) #Scandal

  • http://www.digitalkebab.com Shaun Heenan

    22/24 for me as well, missing only Documentary and Live Short. No surprises whatsoever in any category. Totally okay with where the awards went.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Winchester/ Winchester

    Everything seems to have gone mostly as expected. This is the best thing about the Oscars for me. Thanks to the time difference I go to bed just as it starts and wake up just as it's finishing and the list of winners is sitting right there. No real surprises in the main categories. Comprehensive shut out for 'American Hustle' though.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/RonOnealFresh/ Ron Oneal Fresh

    So I guess the stories of Academy members not watching 12 Years A Slave was bull?

    As far as the awards there were no eye rolling winners of the night so that's good. Hustle, 0-10 great. David O. Russell gotta do better than that junk he put out, would have been unfortunate If he got awarded for it.

    • http://imqwerty.wordpress.com/ Jordan B.

      Well, not necessarily. There's certainly nothing saying you can't vote for a film without seeing it.

      • Dan_Dority

        Exactly. Give Gravity all of the other awards and then appease the masses by giving best film to 12 Years a Slave. I'm sure a lot of them didn't bother watching it; just checked the box and moved on with their lives.....

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Newbourne/ Newbourne

    • Gravity had the best directing of the year.
    • Gravity had the best editing of the year.
    • Gravity had the best visual effects of the year.
    • Gravity had the best sound editing and mixing of the year.
    • Gravity had the best cinematography of the year.
    • Gravity had the best score of the year.

    Clearly, Gravity was the best looking, the best sounding, the most engaging and the most well-crafted film of the year according to the Academy.

    So it makes complete sense that at the end of the night, the Best Picture award ends up going to... 12 Years a Slave.

    • Sir Trey

      This isn't exactly a new occurrence, just one that happens with certain situations:

      Cabaret had the best directing of the year.
      Cabaret had the best editing of the year.
      Cabaret had the best sound of the year.
      Cabaret had the best cinematography of the year.
      Cabaret had the best score of the year.
      Cabaret also won Best Actress and Supporting Actor.

      Best Picture went to a little film that also only won three Oscars (Picture and Adapted Screenplay were two of them, coincidentally) called The Godfather. You might have heard of it.

      This was a distinct case where the power of both films as a whole had more impact than the flashiest, most technical films of that year. Gravity was a lot of people's #2, I'm sure, and deservedly so, and I'm sure it was the same case in 1972 for Cabaret.

      But there's a damn good reason why The Godfather won, and a damn good reason why 12 Years a Slave won...above flash, they were just completely, effectively, 100% the best, most powerful films of their year and the Academy rewarded that.

      • robotsrule

        Right. And if you go back don't you think most Academy members would retroactively give The Godfather best directing, cinematography, and score Oscars if they could? Clearly 30 years later everyone believes The Godfather was the best film that year.

        • Sir Trey

          I haven't seen Cabaret so I can't fully answer that question, but that's not really the point. We can't possibly know how a film will be received four years from now, less known forty, but we vote now, while the films are still fresh and not historic artifacts.

          And, especially in that case, I feel like it would be almost impossible to have any kind of objective voting process because anytime someone saw that film on the voting line, they'd think, "Well...it's The Godfather", ignoring the possibility that even an all-time great film might've been second that year in a certain area to another film. Just because it was the best film from that year doesn't mean that every single aspect of that film was better than others, that's not how these things work.

          *The Godfather was also ineligible for Score at the time.*

          • robotsrule

            Well "objective" is the right word. There is no objectivity to any of this. It's all just people's opinions.

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Newbourne/ Newbourne

        If Gravity was all "flash", it doesn't deserve to be called the Best Directed and edited movie of the year. It's just bogus that 12 Years a Slave is called the Best Film and yet Gravity was deemed superior to it in every single away.

        For the record, I think Gravity is one of the most boring films I've ever seen and no film as dull as that should ever be called the best directed, best shot and best edited movie. I think Her and 12 Years should have divided those awards, but if the Academy wants to give it all to Gravity, they need to trust their gut and give it Best Picture. I think 12 Years only got Best Picture because of its message, for the same reason Crash got it.

        • Sir Trey

          In my own personal rankings from this year, I actually had
          a three-way tie at the top (first time I've ever had any kind of tie) between 12 Years, Gravity and Her, due to the clean splits each film excelled in. 12 Years was devastatingly powerful, significant, brilliantly acted and impactful. Gravity, technically groundbreaking and an astonishing piece of visual filmmaking. And Her, easily the best written film of the year with a more tender, intelligent, thought-provoking and insightful touch on emotion, relationships and technology than I've seen in a while.

          So it seems perfectly logical to me that those films can each win their respective areas, and since Gravity's covers more ground, it gets more awards. 12 Years' score, editing sound and cinematography wasn't as good as Gravity's. The directing was a coin flip. Her's screenplay, a very important part of a film, pulls it higher and higher, and frankly I also think it had the best score. But ranking a film, a subjective piece of art, isn't just as simple as adding up the other awards and spitting out a winner.

          I for one like the idea of splits instead of one movie just sweeping a bunch of awards because it's very rare for one film, in my eyes, to just "clearly" be better than everything else in any given year. That seems like a more honest process to one that just blindly assumes the best picture of the year must automatically have the best everything.

          And for the record, "flash" isn't necessarily a bad thing. Film is a visual medium and a film that can take you to a awe-inspiring visual place, flashy or not, will earn some acclaim. Also, a film's "message" shouldn't necessarily be separated from its quality, I doubt that was the intention of the director or writer, in any case. A well-made film that also manages to get its message across efficiently is a good thing.

          One more thing...this has irritated me for a decade now. If anything was going to win for its "message" that year, it was Brokeback Mountain, the ahead-of-its-time romance at the forefront of the gay rights issues which would stay in the news for the next decade. Crash won because it was *gasp* a better film, and I think it's high time people revisit it because it's gotten waaaaaaaay too much crap over the years.

          • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Newbourne/ Newbourne

            I don't know how old you are, but championing gay rights at the time wasn't as popular as it is now. It was always going to be a controversial pick for the win, but Crash was a safe bet, as anti-racism was a message everybody could get behind. Brokeback is obviously the superior film and it is silly for you to think Crash's Lifetime-esque on-the-nose soapbox was better.

    • robotsrule

      But ultimately the story it was telling was just of less significance and import in regards to the human condition. And that is ultimately the goal of art. Hence, not best picture.

  • thebioscopist

    Someone needs to release a "McConaissance" Box set of The Lincoln Lawyer, Killer Joe, Magic Mike, Mud and Dallas Buyer Club.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Silga/ Silga

      Bernie should also be on the set.

      • http://www.digitalkebab.com Shaun Heenan

        And Wolf of Wall Street.

  • andyluvsfilms

    Such a strange choice for Best Doc, i thought 20 Feet was a fine story but it didn't move me, make me think or inspire me, it just plonked along.

    • robotsrule

      I didn't see 20 feet but The Act of Killing is an important doc people need to see because we supported those crimes. An Oscar would've meant more people would have seen it.

  • Xarnis

    Quite satisfied with the awards. While a lot might not have been my first pick, I can't say many of the wins were outright bad - aside from 20 Feet from Stardom winning over The Act of Killing (and other important docs The Square and Dirty Wars, for that matter). That was absurd.

    12 Years a Slave is a very deserving winner. While I liked Gravity, I was oddly happy when it didn't win BP - maybe because I predicted 12 Years.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Travis/ Travis

      Frankly, I thought all of the docs were pretty meh. Act of Killing was probably the best, but it failed to hit me like previous winners. 20 Feet From Stardom I enjoyed, but it was fluff. Dirty Wars is just 1h20min of a guy whining-while he raised good points, they were all points pretty obvious, and he was really narcissistic and condescending about it. The Square never impressed me, but I may just be overexposed as I have a friend who was in the protests, so none of this was new to me. And Cutie and the Boxer was terrible.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/RyanJayden/ Ryan Jayden

    Highlights of the night:
    - Spike Jonze winning Original Screenplay
    - Lupita's acceptance speech
    - Ellen's group selfie
    - The debut performance of 'Adele Dazim'.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Travis/ Travis

      In Travolta's (slight) defense, it sounded like he said "Mdina Iazel," as if the teleprompter switched the first letters. That said, this just means he is Ron Burgandy

      • http://imqwerty.wordpress.com/ Jordan B.

        It was most definitely "Adele Dazeem" (or Dazim, if you like). My only reaction to what he said was, "Wait, who dat?"

  • yrabadi

    Dude, your predictions along with viewer polls really helped out in my pool - which I won! 23 out of 24. My friends were MAD pissed. lmao. Thanks!

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/navaneethks/ navaneethks

      23 out of 24 was me last year. This year though, not so much. I took quite a few risks.

      • yrabadi

        Last year I was not as good but still won the pool. I think I had 21 out of 24. I missed out on the short/doc awards I think... And I went with Spielberg over Lee.

  • Bertram J. Krogh

    I don’t get the “yawn” and “it dragged” exclamations, I thought it was absolutely riveting. From each musical performance to each acceptance speech and each Ellen gag, I loved it.

    I still don’t think either Gravity or American Hustle are good enough to garner the amount of nominations they did, but at least McQueen’s masterpiece got some recognition. Also, I broke out in standing ovation when Jonze won, and I cried during Nyong’o’s acceptance speech.

  • http://letterboxd.com/gman/ G-Man

    I always have a great time watching the Oscars. It's a night to celebrate something I love (movies) and can't get enough of them. Thought Ellen did a nice job of keeping things fun.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/wuggles/ B. Smith

    Why is everyone hating on 12 years a slave so much...For real did Steve McQueen do something to piss film fans off or something? I don't remember anybody hating the movie as much when it came out and people were definitely predicting that it would win oscars, but in this thread people are going on like "That Awkward Moment" won best picture. Personally in my opinion once you get up to movies that caliber you are really splitting hairs when it comes to who gets what award. Also, as I said in the Oscar thread, as a black woman I actually cried a bit when Lupita Nyong'o won. It's so great to see someone who looks like me win a deserved Oscar.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/navaneethks/ navaneethks

    It was actually a pretty good time even though Ellen is getting negative reviews by TV critics. Yes her previous showing was better, but hey it was still fun. Her winning Best Original Screenplay made my day. American Hustle not winning anything is a victory for cinema and the academy. Glad The Great Gatsby won Production Design and Costume Design, it deserved those categories. Overall it was good and predictable of course. But I have a question for you Brad, are the academy voters just voting for what's being talked about in social media? That's what it's felt like the last couple of years.

  • TheOneWhoKnocks

    Ellen was the best host in years. The problem was the show's length. Interminable.

  • GobleGableOneOfUs

    I still think Her deserved Best Picture, and Spike at the very least deserved a directing nom.

  • http://filmemignon.blogspot.com/ Corbin

    I went 19/24. I would've gone 20/24 if I hadn't listened to my gut in Supporting Actor. :P

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/azjoker1/ azjoker1

    I picked 12 Years a Slave before the show but I really felt that Gravity was going to win midway through the show. I was rather surprised when Will Smith said 12 Years a Slave and I think even Steve McQueen might have been. I'm pretty happy about it though. Even though I loved Gravity, I also loved 12 Years a Slave and I think it deserved to win because it had more meaning and it looks like it will have a long lasting legacy in film.

  • yao21

    Really liked the show, Ellen was a great host.. Lupita in my opinion was the real star of the night, despite the effort of Travolta..

    Also happy with Her winning original screenplay and all the awards in general.