While there was plenty of excitement on stage at the Academy Awards on Sunday (#BongHive eats tonight!), there were some fun backstage moments at the ceremony that you missed. From Tom Hanks changing a joke last minute to Jane Fonda’s adoration of her fellow actors, here are some behind-the-scene highlights from the 2020 Oscars.

  • Natalie Portman said ”I’m sooo happy for you!” as she hugged an over-the-moon Taika Waititi after his Adapted Screenplay win for Jojo Rabbit, while her fellow presenter Timothée Chalamet whooped and hollered. As they walked away from backstage, Portman and Chalamet high fived.
  • As presenters Maya Rudolph and Kristen Wiig prepared to present their categories, Shia LaBeouf, walking off stage with co-presenter Zack Gottsagen, spotted the two women and said to them, “Do good girls!”
  • Salma Hayek and Star Wars actor Oscar Isaac chatted in Spanish as he waited for the restroom backstage.
  • While Eminem performed, Chalamet watched on a backstage monitor. Once the rapper finished, Chalamet lingered in the doorway in hopes of crossing paths with the artist (alas he left through another exit).
  • Minutes before going onstage, Hanks was working on a last-minute tweak to his script, asking to swap in a funny reference to Colin Jost (instead of Helen Mirren) in one part of his bit about the Saturday Night Live writer looking better than Brad Pitt with his shirt off. He suggested they pan to Jost in the audience as he name-checks the comedian.
  • Dressed up as her orange cat character from Cats and wearing face paint (and heels) and walking slightly awkwardly, presenter Rebel Wilson said to costar James Corden, also donning a catsuit, black tux jacket, and top hat, “You’ve classed it up!”
  • Isaac picked a remnant of cat fuzz off Corden, who was back in his black tux in the theater hallway, and the two have an animated chat with Rami Malek.
  • Fonda watched Joaquin Phoenix’s acceptance speech for Joker on the monitor with great attention. She nodded her head when Phoenix quoted his brother River. Tears still in his eyes, Phoenix came off stage to pose for the requisite photo with presenter Olivia Coleman. He moved toward Fonda, who gave him a kiss and sweetly touched his cheek.
  • Watching Renee Zellweger accept her Best Actress award on the monitor, Fonda said aloud, “Good for you.”
good for her arrested development
  • When Zellweger came off stage, Fonda said to her, “Bravo to you! Girl, what a performance!” Truly appreciative, Zellweger moved toward Fonda and thanked her, and said, “You’re a knock-out!”
  • After hugging Malek, Zellweger said to no one in particular, ”If only I could stand up straight, I’m shaking so much!”

Reporting by People

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