Hollywood parents often get a bad rap. Whether it’s pushing a young kid into the spotlight with such a force that a meltdown of some fashion is inevitable not long after (Miley Cyrus, Britney Spears) or watching helplessly on the sidelines as their progeny hit rock bottom over and over again (Charlie Sheen, Lindsay Lohan), moms and dads of celebrities are more often discussed in hushed tones than with high praise.
But that wasn’t the case at last night’s Academy Awards ceremony. While athletes and musicians most often seem to thank God or another higher power for their success, the theme of the night seemed to be thanking moms and dads for their love and support that lead the winners to Oscar gold.
The director of The King’s Speech gave his mom high praise for leading him to the script that lead to the Academy Award-winning film, advising the viewing audience to also listen to their mothers. Best Actress winner Natalie Portman thanked her parents lovingly for “giving her life,” and made a touching tribute to her swollen belly and unborn child.
It’s not unusual to hear actors thank their spouses and children, but this was the first time in memory that so many moms and dads made it into the speeches.
The winner for Best Screenplay, 73-year-old David Seidler, acknowledged his father, too, saying he often told him he’d be a late bloomer. Best Adapted Screenplay winner Aaron Sorkin acknowledged his parents, and he also gave mention to his daughter’s guinea pig.
Host and nominee James Franco’s grandmother gave him a shout-out during the show, as did Anne Hathaway’s mom. Justin Timberlake’s date was his mom, not his starlet girlfriend, and star Russell Brand also had his mom, not his pop star wife, on his arm as he walked the red carpet.
While the ceremony itself will likely go down in history for all the wrong reasons, in the annuls of parenting, it was a night to remember with a Hollywood-worthy happy ending.