Brad Pitt has been one of the biggest stars in the world for decades now, delivering many iconic performances in amazing movies, but one honor that has long eluded him has been an Academy Award for acting. While he won an Oscar as a producer a few years back for his role in making 12 Years A Slave, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences repeatedly overlooked his work on screen for years. But that streak ended tonight.
Regina King took the stage this evening to hand out the award for Best Supporting Actor, and it was ultimately Brad Pitt that she invited to the stage for his performance in Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. It was very clear in the moment that the award meant a lot to him, as you can see by watching this clip from his acceptance speech below.
Brad Pitt first began professionally acting in the late-1980s, starting out with TV work and uncredited movie roles, but, as referenced by the actor during his speech, it was really his part in Ridley Scott’s 1991 thriller Thelma & Louise that caused people to really pay attention to him. In the movie, he plays an attractive young man named J.D. who winds up sleeping with Geena Davis’ Thelma before robbing her – and while it was a relatively small role, he still managed to turn heads.
He followed up Thelma & Louise with films like Kalifornia and True Romance (his first character from a script written by Quentin Tarantino), and it was arguably in 1994 with Interview With The Vampire and Legends Of the Fall that he was cemented as a star. That was followed by both Se7en and Twelve Monkeys in 1995, and the years that followed saw him in a series of memorable films including Meet Joe Black, Fight Club, and Ocean’s Eleven (which would become his first franchise).
It was for Twelve Monkeys that Brad Pitt got his first Academy Award nomination, eventually losing to Kevin Spacey for The Usual Suspects; and before this year he had been up for an Oscar only one other time: in 2009 for playing the titular role in The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button (that year he lost to Sean Penn for Milk).
Finally, though, he got his big moment in the spotlight tonight thanks to his incredible performance as stuntman Cliff Booth in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. The character is a true delight, as he is a man who seems to totally understand his role in the universe, and has grown to be completely comfortable with it. And, of course, it’s an absolute blast to watch him totally destroy Sharon Tate’s would-be killers while totally out of his mind on acid.
The Oscar for Best Supporting Actor was just the first Academy Award delivered at the 2020 show, and we have plenty more coverage of the event coming your way in the next few hours, so stay tuned for more news, videos, and features
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NJ native who calls LA home and lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran who is endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.