It’s here people: the award season. There’s something special about the film and television award shows, whether it’s because of the Academy Awards, the Golden Globes or any of the other ones that no one watches, this is a special time of the year for film fans. While there are people who watch only to see who wins the big awards, some watch to see the biggest stars converse with each other, and others even watch for the fashion. There is also a collection of people who watch for the off-chance that someone might do or say something embarrassing. No, it doesn’t happen every year, but, when it does, it’s spectacular. In a live award show, there are so many things that can go wrong. We sit on the edge of our chairs waiting for that terribly awkward speech, the horrific red carpet interview or an off-color joke from the host that misses its mark. The possibilities are endless and that makes it must-see TV.
Throughout the years of televised film and TV award shows, specifically the Academy Awards and the Golden Globes, there have been so many incredibly embarrassing moments that we’ve witnessed. Take the recently completed 74th Golden Globe Awards, for example, which showcased several humiliating moments, some even made this list. Even before the show started, we saw Al Roker completely forget every single movie that Mel Gibson had directed, namely Braveheart, when interviewing the star. We also saw Jenna Bush Hager call a film Hidden Fences, combining the two films Hidden Figures and Fences together. We thought she was horrible until we heard Michael Keaton make the same mistake, introducing Octavia Spencer‘s nomination for Hidden Fences on stage during the awards, which made everyone who witnessed both mistakes think to themselves, huh, I guess that is what the film is called. These were great bloopers but they are just minor compared to the entrants on this list. Here are the 15 most humiliating film and TV award show moments.
15. Emma Stone and the Hug
Maybe you missed this, but we promise you, once you’ve seen it, you’ll always remember it. Damien Chazelle had just won Best Original Screenplay at the 2017 Golden Globes and the camera went to the La La Land table. There Chazelle stood up and received congratulatory hugs from his team, some less awkward than others. First, it was Ryan Gosling who gave a strange one-armed hug to the director, but then Emma Stone decided to go in for the kill, wrapping her arms around Chazelle. Without recognizing that Stone was trying to hug him, Chazelle turned and embraced his girlfriend, all the while Stone is latched onto him. In Stone’s defense, she quickly realized that she was mixed up in a three-way hug and backed out, saying “that was weird, I’m sorry.” She then stood there sheepishly, melting from embarrassment. The key to this unbelievably hilarious sequence is Gosling dying of laughter in the background, half at his own brutal hug and half at Stone’s awkwardness. Watching this exchange is better than any film made in 2016.
14. Jennifer Lawrence Falling… Twice
When Jennifer Lawrence was announced as the Best Actress at the Academy Awards in 2013 for her performance in Silver Linings Playbook the room gave a pleasant applause. Yet, as she walked up the stairs in her long, white gown, she fell. It was embarrassing for all of us. But even as Hugh Jackman and Bradley Cooper heroically rushed to help her up, Lawrence stood all on her own and made her way to the microphone. By this point the whole crowd stood for her in an attempt to make it less awkward for the young actress. Lawrence also made fun of herself to ease her humiliation a tad. Then, the following year, Lawrence had another stumble; this time on the red carpet. On this occasion, as she fell to the ground, Lawrence reached out to grab onto her friend, but failed to gain any support, simply clawing her back instead. Now, we’re wondering if Lawrence shouldn’t try flats at award shows.
13. Hattie McDaniel’s Win
When, in 1940, the 12th Academy Awards were presented, the most significant win in the history of film awards was given out. Hattie McDaniel, one of the stars of Gone with the Wind, became the first African American to win an Oscar, taking home the Best Supporting Actress award. While she accepted the award with grace and honor, McDaniel’s win made clear an embarrassing stain both on the ceremony and the times. When McDaniel’s name was called out, no one looked to the Gone with the Wind table because the actress wasn’t sitting there; she wasn’t allowed to. She was in the back of the room, sitting at the segregated table with her escort. After she won and beautifully accepted the award, McDaniel was escorted to her spot in the back of the room.
12. Rob Lowe and Snow White
No matter what it is or whether it’s at the Academy Awards or the Golden Globes, the opening routines at the award shows always draw some of the harshest criticism from viewers. Even when it’s undeserved, people will pick at the smallest things to complain about. But there is one opening bit that will always be the benchmark of garbage. It happened at the 1989 Academy Awards and Snow White and Rob Lowe sang to each other on stage. Yeah, there were other parts to it, but this is what stood out in everyone’s memory. Lowe was probably high out of his mind at the time and couldn’t hit a note to save his soul. Many of the stars in the audience stifled their laughter, whereas others just looked pissed off. It was the worst thing to hit television in the 80s and that’s saying a lot. Afterward, several actors voiced their concern that the Academy Awards were finished forever because of that embarrassing display.
11. Music by Prudence
When the most self-absorbed person in the world, Kanye West, took to the stage to make an ass out of himself after Taylor Swift won over Beyoncé at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, people thought it would never happen anywhere else, especially not at the Oscars, but it did, sort of. The very next year at the 2010 Academy Awards, film producer Roger Ross Williams won the award for Best Documentary (Short Subject) for Music by Prudence. As he got on stage and began his acceptance speech, a strange woman clambered up on stage and interrupted him, speaking over him and taking up all his time. We knew it was weird, but the anonymity of the two people confused us. Still, we thought to ourselves, WTF? Turns out the woman was the film’s former producer, Elinor Burkett, who was removed from the film before its release. The actual winner, Williams, stood there helplessly as Burkett stole his moment. He would later say, “The Academy is very clear that only one person can speak. I own the film. She has no claim whatsoever. She has nothing to do with the movie. She just ambushed me. I was sort of in shock.”
10. James Franco and Anne Hathaway Hosting
There’s just too much to pick on here. The year that James Franco and Anne Hathaway hosted the Oscars will go down as some of the worst hosting the ceremony has ever seen. Hathaway was overly fake and bubbly and Franco was withdrawn, uninterested and probably high. When asked what Franco was thinking and why he looked so fried up on stage, he said that his co-host was “so energetic, I think the Tasmanian Devil would look stoned standing next to Anne Hathaway.” You know, he’s right. Even when he did a segment wearing a wig and what looked like an old Marilyn Monroe dress, Hathaway still out-shined him.
9. Isaac Mizrahi the Groper
At the 2006 Golden Globes, there was an interviewer on the red carpet, who made everyone, including the stars he spoke to and the people at home about as uncomfortable as could be. From grabbing Scarlett Johansson‘s breasts (who was too sweet to show that she was uncomfortable) to asking Eva Longoria about her pubic hair to calling Charlize Theron’s character in Monster a “dyke with no teeth,” fashion designer turned interviewer, Isaac Mizrahi, crossed the line, turned and spat on it and then continued running beyond it. Perhaps the fact that he is gay allowed him to get away with such blatant offenses, at least, that’s what the E! Network president claimed afterward. Either way, if it didn’t humiliate the actresses he assaulted and insulted, it humiliated everyone watching for them.
8. Ann Reinking
Maybe you don’t remember actress and dancer Ann Reinking or maybe you do, but if you have never seen her jaw-dropping performance of the Phil Collins smash hit “Against All Odds” at the 1985 Academy Awards, look it up immediately. Rather than have Collins perform the hit himself, the Academy wanted a “film person” to do it, so they asked Reinking. The world soon found out that Reinking is a horrible singer, even though the performance was lip-synced. There on stage stood an awkwardly wide-eyed Reinking, singing in her best monotone voice for the entire world. The performance seems like a joke until you realize, this is a woman who’s trying her best.
7. “Come and get it, Frank!”
If you’ve ever wondered if someone has ever mistakenly believed they won an award at the Oscars, you’ll be happy to learn that it has happened. The year was 1934 and it was the 7th Academy Awards. While some people blame Frank Capra for his own embarrassing moment, the blame is quite clearly and squarely owed to the host Will Rogers. Rogers, after announcing the nominees for Best Director, said simply, “come and get it, Frank!” Capra, hearing his name and being consumed by elation, jumped up and made his way up to the stage. It was there that he learned Rogers actually meant the other Frank, Frank Lloyd. Capra then began, what he called, “the longest, saddest, most shattering walk of my life. I wished I could have crawled under the rug like a miserable worm. When I slumped in my chair I felt like one. All my friends at the table were crying.”
6. Dakota Johnson and Mom Bickering
You know how sometimes your parents bring out the worst in you? Well, like many families, it became painfully obvious that Dakota Johnson and her mother, actress Melanie Griffith, bicker from time to time. We just aren’t used to seeing it on live television or at the Academy Awards like we did in 2015. When asked if Griffith had seen her daughter’s new film, 50 Shades of Grey, Griffith said that she hadn’t and didn’t plan on it. At first, Johnson shrugged it off and made light of it, saying “not yet,” implying that she could see it in the future. Griffith then said it would be weird to see that, to which Johnson said that it wouldn’t. We could see Johnson was getting annoyed at her mom for embarrassing her. She visibly wanted the topic to switch, but mama bear kept going, insisting that she didn’t “need to see it.” This set Johnson into a rage and she sputtered, “Alright, you don’t have to see it! Jesus Christ.” Awkward.
5. A Kiss To Soothe A Broken Heart
It was the kiss that everyone seemed to miss, but it happened and there’s video evidence of it. At the 2017 Golden Globes, as Ryan Gosling’s name was called as the winner of the Best Actor in a Comedy or Musical, a category that Ryan Reynolds was also nominated in, if not favored to win, something magical was caught by cameras. There, in the seconds after Reynolds realized he had lost to Gosling, Andrew Garfield and Reynolds shared a passionate kiss at their table. Perhaps it was a consolation prize or just spur of the moment, but it might also have been to spurn Garfield’s ex (Gosling’s co-star), Emma Stone. Who knows such answers
4. Necking with Gary Busey
In one of the stranger moments seen on the red carpet at the Academy Awards, Ryan Seacrest was trying to begin an interview with Laura Linney and Jennifer Garner at the 2008 Oscars when a loud and boisterous Gary Busey could be heard yelling, “Ryan! Ryan Seacrest! I’ve been looking for you for years!” After a quick exchange, Seacrest started up the interview with the two actresses. A few seconds later, over came Busey and started up an insanely weird encounter. First, Busey congratulated Linney and the two embraced. Then, Seacrest, seemingly terrified of Busey, asked if Busey knew Garner to draw attention away from himself. Garner was quite obviously uninterested in meeting Busey, but he turned and gave her a hug anyways. It was nice. But then he gave her a kiss on the neck, which was strange. Having said that, Garner handled this situation terribly. Sure, she was uncomfortable, but she didn’t need to call out how awkward it was that Busey had kissed her neck on live television. She then acted as if she feared for her life around Busey. Yeah, it was weird as hell, but Garner treated Busey like he was a convicted sex offender. He apologized afterward nonetheless.
3. Siblings Doing NOT Sibling Stuff
It started on the red carpet at the 2000 Academy Awards. Angelina Jolie appeared with her brother. They looked so happy. Such familial love. Wait, are they kissing? Are their mouths open? Are you sure that’s her brother? It was strange and it sparked a ton of controversy. Nothing could top that, right? Wrong. Jolie went on to win Best Supporting Actress for Girl, Interrupted and, in her acceptance speech, she went right into discussing her brother. “I’m – I’m in shock,” she said. “And I’m just so in love with my brother right now. He just held me and said he loved me and I know he’s so happy for me.” Weird family. #TeamPitt
2. Travolta Being Travolta
Anyone who knows John Travolta knows that he is a very unique character. Even still, when he came out on stage to announce one of the nominees for Best Original Song at the Oscars, we all knew something was off. He didn’t necessarily set off any alarm bells right away, but he was squinting to read the teleprompter and he was subtly stuttering his way through certain words. But then it happened. He said a name that no one recognized. We know the singer of the song he was announcing, “Let It Go.” Her name is Idina Menzel. What the hell did he just say? Adele Dazeem? John knew he botched it too. He said it with a little bit of foreign flavor to try and mask the pronunciation of the words, but they were too clear. They were too far off for us to confuse what he said. You gotta feel for the guy though. He probably completely blacked out up there. By the time the name came out, he was having an out-of-body experience and it just happened. He spat that name out, quickly turned and started wondering to himself if he really said what he thought he said. Nah, there’s no way. I’m John Travolta. I nailed it.
1. Gwyneth Paltrow Fake Crying
Gwyneth Paltrow takes a lot of heat for being different than other people. We should, by now, recognize this fact. Back in 1999, at the Academy Awards when Paltrow took home Best Actress, which would have been a surprising win if it wasn’t a Harvey Weinstein production, we first noticed that there was something unique about the star. One of the big differences is, unlike most humans, when Paltrow cries and sobs, no tears come out of her eyes. Strange. By now, we’ve seen so many overly theatrical acceptance speeches that nothing can surprise us, but this was 1999. Times were different. Paltrow got up on stage and gave one of the worst performances of her career. It was obvious. It was fake. If you never suspected that winners already knew they were going to win before the announcement, then seeing this would have changed your mind. Paltrow’s speech will go down in history as the worst ever, and that includes all the speeches that were cut off for being too long, the ones that just say thank you, and even the ones that are accepted by the presenters when the winner didn’t show up.
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