Host Jimmy Kimmel speaks onstage during the 89th Annual Academy Awards.
Photo by Kevin Winter—Getty Images
By Tom Huddleston Jr.
February 27, 2017

It came as no surprise that Hollywood’s biggest night turned political.

Even before Sunday night’s 89th annual Academy Awards ceremony, many celebrities had used Hollywood’s award season as a platform to oppose President Donald Trump—from actress Meryl Streep to David Harbour, who stars in Netflix’s hit sci-fi series Stranger Things. (Trump even responded to Streep’s comments at last month’s Golden Globes by calling her “overrated” on Twitter; the White House later claimed the president would not watch the Oscars.)

It was clear early on that Sunday’s Oscars would be political, with many of this year’s Academy Award nominees, along with several other stars, wearing blue ribbons in support of the American Civil Liberties Union. The group has fought against Trump’s attempted travel ban.

Here are some of the most notable anti-Trump statements from on stage at the Oscars:

Jimmy Kimmel

The Oscars host wasted little time before laying into Trump. “I want to say ‘Thank You’ to President Trump,” Kimmel said during his opening monologue. “Remember, last year, when it seemed like the Oscars were racist?,” referring to last year’s Academy Awards, when no non-white actors were nominated for awards for a second straight year. “That’s gone, thanks to him,” Kimmel added, implying that the award show seems much less racist now in comparison.

The comedian and host of the ABC late-night talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live!, also told the crowd full of Oscar nominees that they had a unique opportunity. “Some of you get to come on this stage and make a speech that the President of the United States will tweet about in all caps during his 5 a.m. bowel movement,” Kimmel said.

Kimmel’s other moments of political humor included telling French actress Isabelle Huppert, “I’m glad Homeland Security let you in tonight.” Kimmel also made light of Trump’s Tweet calling Streep “overrated,” with the Oscars host joking that Streep’s career had “stood the test of time for her many uninspiring and overrated performances.” Kimmel proceeded to ridicule Trump’s swipe at the iconic actress while the audience gave Streep a standing ovation. Kimmel couldn’t help but add a joke about the president’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, who has recently seen several retailers drop her clothing line. “Nice dress, by the way,” Kimmel said to Streep. “Is that an Ivanka?”

And, later in the show, Kimmel pulled off a gag in which he Tweeted at Trump (who was uncharacteristically silent on the social media platform during the Oscars).

Asghar Farhadi

The Iranian director’s The Salesman won the prize in the category for Best Foreign Picture. But Farhadi did not attend the Oscars in protest of President Trump’s attempted travel ban covering Farhadi’s home country as well as six other Muslim-majority nations. In a statement read on behalf of Farhadi, the director said: “My absence is out of respect for the people of my country and those of the other six nations whom have been disrespected by the inhumane law that bans entry of immigrants to the U.S. Dividing the world into the ‘us’ and ‘our enemies’ categories creates fear—a deceitful justification for aggression and war.”

Gael García Bernal

Gael García Bernal, star of Amazon’s Mozart in the Jungle, reminded the audience about his own Mexican heritage (with an obvious reference to the president’s plan to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border) before he introduced the nominees for Best Animated Feature. “As a Mexican, as a Latin American, as a migrant worker, as a human being, I am against any form of wall that wants to separate us,” García Bernal said.

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