The 61st Annual Academy Awards (1989)

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The 61st Annual Academy Awards (1989) Poster

Award of the American academy of cinematographic arts and sciences, from 1940th known as "Oscar", - American film award created in 1929 and traditionally handed to the figures of ... See full summary »

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  • The 61st Annual Academy Awards (1989)
  • The 61st Annual Academy Awards (1989)
  • Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson at an event for The 61st Annual Academy Awards (1989)
  • The 61st Annual Academy Awards (1989)
  • The 61st Annual Academy Awards (1989)
  • The 61st Annual Academy Awards (1989)

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Director:

Jeff Margolis

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26 March 2005 | richard.fuller1
Eileen Bowman!
Yes, this was the diabolical Academy Awards ceremony when Rob Lowe would dance with a young woman made up to look like Snow White and insulted Disney to the point where they considered suing for defamation of their character. Not that Disney owns the fairy tale character, but they do have a claim to the visual likeness; bobbed black hair, the puffy yellow sleeves, etc.

I remember this show well. And even if Disney hadn't felt they needed to take legal action (they started to, but eventually let it drop. I think the Academy apologized), there was still embarrassment at the opening number.

It was just corny.

Lily Tomlin would appear at the end of the number and even she knew it was ridiculous. A dancer had lost his shoe and it was setting on the steps she had just descended.

And what do we see behind her? A young man slowly crawling down the stairs to get THAT shoe! Now, we wouldn't have noticed the shoe actually, but there was no way we could miss this grown figure of a person! And what does he do with it? Hurls it forward off the stage! Tomlin tried to catch it, but no luck.

Things spiraled, not necessarily downward, after that.

Fortunately Geena Davis was wearing a very fetching outfit.

Kim Basinger was wearing that totally odd half-sleeved, half gloved, half collar get-up. She looked terrified too.

Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith would do a 'cute' little presentation where he proposed to her just before they presented the award.

Awww! Applause.

Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn would do a similar presentation.

"Are you proposing to me?" Goldie would ask Kurt as Melanie had asked Don.

"Oh," Kurt would say suddenly "they want us to hurry up and present the award." Leaving Goldie looking like that deer in the headlights. Kurt couldn't quit laughing.

One very amusing bit was the presentation of best animated short, delivered by Carrie Fisher and Martin Short.

In the same outfit.

Carrie emerged from one side, smiling broadly, and Martin appeared from the other side, doing the same, wearing the same.

"Martin, you knew I wanted to wear this." That they both had the same short dark hair made them almost look like twins, but once they got together, Martin clearly towered over Carrie.

And yes, it was the final appearance of Lucille Ball, who presented an award with Bob Hope.

By the time Cher presented the award for Best Picture, it was beyond time for this thing to be over with.

Dustin Hoffman would win Best Actor for Rain Man and forgot to thank both the director and Tom Cruise.

As Dustin left the stage, the camera catches him pausing behind the panel-wall and he seems to be gasping for breath.

Jodie Foster would win for The Accused when Melanie Griffith was the clear favorite.

And Kevin Kline would win the Oscar for A Fish Called Wanda, clearly seeming to be a pay off to Uncle Gil Cates to take over production of the Academy Awards ceremonies. Maybe? Maybe not. Who knows? Tho this may have been the first season of "And the Oscar goes to. . . " I think Bruce Willis made a mistake and when he opened the envelope, he still said "And the Winner is . . . . " Not that any of it mattered.

"This is astonishing," Kline would say when he got his 'acting' award.

Yea, it was astonishing, alright, but in more ways than one.

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