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Gold Man for the Iron Lady! Meryl Streep Wins Best Actress Oscar

Congratulations, Meryl!

The Iron Lady took home a little Gold Man!

In a moment that took many by surprise, Meryl Streep was named Best Actress at the 2012 Academy Awards. Her titular role as Margaret Thatcher was hailed as the highlight of the film The Iron Lady, but it was widely expected that she would lose out to fan favorite Viola Davis of The Help.

Even Meryl herself, dressed head to foot in shimmering gold, seemed surprised to be picking up her third Oscar. (She’s been nominated a record-breaking 17 times.) She immediately went over to hug Davis before ascending the stage stairs to accept her award.

Never one to take herself seriously, she started off her speech with a self-effacing remark:

“Oh, my God! Oh, come on!…When I heard my name, I had this feeling I could hear half of America going, ‘Oh, no! Oh, come on, why her again?’ But, whatever.”

But as a past winner, she knew the importance of getting the important thanks out of the way before the orchestra started to play. She gave heartfelt thanks to her husband, Don Gummer, for giving her “everything I value most in our lives,” as well as her “other partner” J. Roy Helland, the makeup artist who transformed her into a mirror image of the former British prime minister.

Meryl went on to pay tribute to her colleagues. “I look out here and see my life before my eyes – my old friends, my new friends. This is such a great honor, but the thing that counts the most with me is the friends and the love and the sheer joy we have shared making movies together.

“Thank you, all of you, departed and here, in this inexplicably wonderful career. Thank you.”

Many fans would surely say, “No, Meryl – thank you.”

[Photo: via PRPhotos.com]

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