Rowdy boos were followed by triumphant cheers at the Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild Awards on Saturday in Los Angeles, as the Hollywood union touched on a week of controversy over a reversed decision to hand out four Oscars during the show’s commercial breaks.
Hair and makeup was one of the four categories that would have been relegated to commercials, edited down and aired later on in the ABC event. After intense backlash from the creative community, the Academy stood down and declared it would air all categories on the live show.
“We’re in good company with the cinematography and the editing folks because they’re vital to making movies. Can you imagine if they didn’t have hair and make up for the movies?” joked Loni Love, a host on “The Real” and the emcee of the guild’s Saturday ceremony held at DTLA’s Novo Theater.
“They realized that sending actors to the red carpet without makeup and hair probably wouldn’t work. Can you imagine Bradley Cooper with his pimples showing? The whole show would be commercials,” she continued.
When Love first broached the controversy, a good portion of the audience erupted in boos. Backstage, Variety spoke with union president Julie Socash, who said she was “largely focused on our own evening to worry about the Oscars. But yes, we’re very happy the changed their minds. The Academy is doing its thing and sorting it out.”
Vivica Fox, a presenter for two special effects makeup awards, also applauded the reversal, which was initially done to shave time off of the Oscar telecast. The onus should be on winners to watch their speech lengths, the “Kill Bill” star said.
“Everyone should learn to shorten acceptance speeches. We should all be respectful of each other’s time, and not get long-winded. If you’ve been winning so far in the season, you probably have an idea who you need to thank,” she said.
The evening honored Melissa McCarthy, often a chameleon in comedic roles like “Spy,” “The Boss” and her Sandra Bullock buddy comedy “The Heat.” McCarthy is a best actress Oscar nominee this year for her dramatic turn as burnt out writer Lee Israel in “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”
Other winners included Adam McKay’s “Vice,” “A Star is Born” and “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.”
Read a full list of winners here.