LOS ANGELES – British rock band Queen, that features “American Idol” star Adam Lambert as lead vocalist, opened the first hostless Oscars current in 30 years on Sunday with a rollicking effectivity that launched the Dolby Theatre’s film star crowd to its toes.
Queen’s flip on the Academy Awards marked the first time that the U.S. film enterprise’s highest honors have been kicked off by a rock band and set the tone for a telecast punctuated with memorable musical moments and foremost recording stars.
The two full of life, surviving musicians from Queen’s genuine lineup – guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor – joined Lambert, filling in as frontman for the late Freddie Mercury, to play two of the band’s finest hits: “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions.”
The acquainted guitar and drum riffs launched the star-studded theater viewers out of its chairs, with a lot of the Hollywood luminaries singing alongside.
It moreover foreshadowed an infinite night for “Bohemian Rhapsody,” the hit film about Mercury and Queen that was nominated for most interesting picture. It ended up profitable in 4 totally different lessons, along with most interesting actor for Rami Malek’s portrayal of Mercury.
Launching the ABC telecast with a dwell rock act was an unprecedented choice that occurred after comedian Kevin Hart, initially picked to host the current, bowed out on account of a furor over earlier homophobic supplies in his standup act and tweets.
Hart’s withdrawal in December left the Oscars with out a grasp of ceremonies for the first time since 1989. That yr, the revealed opened with an 11-minute song-and-dance amount, extensively derided by critics, that features Rob Lowe and an actress dressed as Snow White.
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In newest years, the opening monologue of the Oscar host has develop to be a platform for gags and jokes lampooning politicians and Hollywood.
Instead, producers positioned higher emphasis this yr on musical performances and quick stage cameos by film star guests ranging from singer-actresses Barbra Streisand and Jennifer Lopez to tennis champion Serena Williams and U.S. Congressman John Lewis.
Comic actor Keegan-Michael Key was lowered to the stage on fly wires to introduce Bette Midler’s rendition of “The Place Where Lost Things Go,” from the film “Mary Poppins Returns.” Jennifer Hudson carried out “I’ll Fight,” from the documentary about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, “RBG.”
And actor-director Bradley Cooper joined his co-star, Lady Gaga, in climbing the steps from the viewers to the stage for an intimately rendered duet of “Shallow,” from their film remake of “A Star is Born.” The observe, which Gaga co-wrote, gained for most interesting genuine observe.
But the opening strains of “We Will Rock You” have been perhaps basically essentially the most riveting musically, a second as worthy of the Grammys as a result of the Oscars.
Lambert first appeared with Queen’s May and Taylor in 2009 as a contestant on the hit experience current “American Idol” when he carried out two of the band’s hits on that program. The trio went on to collaborate typically in 2011 and have since toured repeatedly collectively as Queen + Adam Lambert.
Oscar producers, anxious to boost viewership after a doc low U.S. TV viewers in 2018, moreover have been beneath pressure to take care of the telecast inside its three-hour designated time slot. It ended up working about 20 minutes over.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was counting on the sector office recognition of a lot of of basically essentially the most nominated motion pictures this yr – along with “Black Panther,” “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “A Star is Born” – to help reinvigorate the current.
Months in the previous, the academy abandoned an ill-fated plan to create a model new class of most interesting “popular” movie as a fashion of boosting Oscar rankings.
Despite the scarcity of an official current host, Maya Rudolph obtained in some jabs as she took the stage with two fellow actress- comedians – Tina Fey and Amy Poehler – to present the night’s first award, to Regina King as most interesting supporting actress for her operate in “If Beale Street Could Talk.”
“There is no host tonight, there won’t be a popular movie category, and Mexico is not paying for the wall,” Rudolph deadpanned, skewering the academy in addition to U.S. President Donald Trump’s advertising and marketing marketing campaign promise to assemble a southern U.S. border wall at Mexico’s expense.
Reporting by Steve Gorman in Los Angeles; modifying by Bill Tarrant and Jonathan Oatis