Olivia Colman pulls off stunning upset for Best Actress at 2019 Oscars

Olivia Colman has pulled off a stunning upset to win the Academy Award for Best Actress.

The Favourite star triumphed over category frontrunner Glenn Close (The Wife), A Star Is Born‘s Lady Gaga, Can You Ever Forgive Me? actress Melissa McCarthy, and Roma‘s Yalitza Aparicio at Sunday’s Oscars ceremony, winning her first Academy Award for her biting portraying of the ruthless Queen Anne in Yorgos Lanthimos’ unorthodox period drama.

“This is hilarious. I’ve got an Oscar!” a tearful (and clearly gobsmacked) Colman said as she made her way to the stage, upon which she called costars Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz “the two loveliest women in the world to fall in love with.”

“It wasn’t a hardship to be in the category with these women,” she said of her fellow nominees. She particularly singled out Close — who was widely presumed to take Best Actress this year — for being an “idol.”

“This is not how I wanted it to be,” Colman continued, referencing Close’s domination of the 2018-19 awards season. “I think you’re amazing.”

Colman then reminisced about her days working as a cleaner (“I spent quite a lot of my time imagining this!” she said) before closing her speech by blowing a kiss to Gaga.

The 45-year-old English actress won Best Actress on her first Academy Award nomination, which she received last month alongside her Favourite colleagues Stone and Weisz — both of whom scored nods among the Best Supporting Actress set.

Though Colman earned the British Academy of Film & Television Arts Award (a weighty Oscar precursor thanks to both groups sharing members) earlier this month, Close swept most of the key accolades that typically precede a Best Actress victory, including the Screen Actors Guild Award and the Critics Choice Award.

“It’s incredible how easy it is for her — people hate her for it,” Lanthimos previously joked to EW when asked about Colman’s show-stopping performance as the wild sovereign. “With Olivia, you just have to remind her where she is and what the situation is, and she turns it on immediately.”

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