Odds-on favorite Matthew McConaughey won the best actor Oscar for his portrayal of AIDS activist Ron Woodroof in “Dallas Buyers Club.”
McConaughey and castmate Jared Leto have dominated awards season, both winning Golden Globes, SAG and Independent Spirit trophies and now Academy Awards. The wins make the movie only the fifth in history to win best actor and best supporting actor in the same year.
McConaughey lost over 40 pounds to portray Woodruff. He began his acceptance by thanking his fellow nominees, saying “All these performances were impeccable.”
McConnaughey then launched into a typical rambling discourse in which he said he needed someone to look up to, something to look forward to and someone to chase; followed by a thanks to God and the power of gratitude; thanks to his deceased father, who he asserted was celebrating with gumbo and Miller Lite; thanks to his mother, for teaching him how to respect himself; and thanks to his wife and three children.
McConaughey concluded with his trademark “All right, all right, all right” from “Dazed and Confused” and his signature phrase “Just keep livin.”
Backstage, he said of the Oscar, “It feels…I’m not going to say surreal. I did not expect it. It’s a bit of the end of a journey with this film and a script that came across my desk four years ago.”
“Dallas Buyers Club,” which recounts the homophobic Woodroof smuggling unapproved pharmaceutical drugs into Texas to help AIDS victims, premiered in September at the Toronto International Film Festival and has grossed over $30 million for Focus Features.