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‘Thank you, thank you. Wow. Thank you, thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Give me a second to adjust my danger zone here. All right. I’m good. Welcome, and congratulations, welcome to the 95th Oscars! You made it.

‘Congratulations. I know that being here tonight is a dream come true. Thank you for inviting me to be a part of it, especially this year, when the finally got out of the house to see the films you worked so hard to make, the way you intended them to be seen, in a theater. 

‘I am happy to see that Nicole Kidman has finally been released from that abandoned AMC – where she has been held captive for almost two full years now. Good to have you back, Nicole. And thank you for encouraging people who were already at the movie theater to go to the movie theater. 

‘You look great. Everybody looks so great. When I look around this room, I can’t help but wonder, is Ozempic right for me? So many first-time nominees here. In the acting categories alone, there are 16 first-time nominees, including Jamie Lee Curtis, including Colin Farrell, Michelle Yeoh. Brendan Fraser. This is, I think, a great piece of Oscar trivia. 

’31 years ago, in 1992, Brendan Fraser and Ke were in a movie together – you remember which movie was it? Encino Man. Two actors from Encino Man are nominated for Oscars. What an incredible night this must be for the two of year and what a very difficult night for Pauly Shore. 

‘Maybe it’s time to reboot Biodome. All the top-ten highest grossing films this year were sequels or franchises. They say Hollywood is running out of ideas. Poor Steven Spielberg had to make a movie about Steven Spielberg. Congratulations, Steven. 

‘Look at this, by the way. I want to say, right here, this is my favorite duo of the year. Steven Spielberg and Seth Rogen. What a pair. The Joe and Hunter Biden of Hollywood.

‘Seth, what are you on right now? Be honest. Nothing? Mushrooms, right? Did you give one to Steven? Give him one. Let’s see what happens. Maybe he’ll make something Steven claims he has never smoked weed. You mean to tell me you were sober when you made a movie about an alien that eats Reese’s pieces all day and can’t remember how to phone home? 

‘Steven is the first director to be nominated in six different decades for an Oscar. Remarkable. This time, as you know, he is nominated for The Fabelmans. They say write what you know, and also write what you know your mom did with your dad’s best friend. 

‘And Steven did that, and the result was yet another Oscar nomination for the great Michelle Williams. And The Fabelmans wasn’t an easy shoot. After almost every take, Spielberg would rush up to her with tears in his eyes, he would scream, that’s not how mommy said it! 

‘I also want to extend congratulations to Steven’s longtime collaborator, the maestro John Williams, who is now the oldest nominee in Oscar history. And he looks great, John turned 91 years old last month and he’s still scoring, if you know what I mean. 

And by the way, if you have never made love to the score from Raiders of the lost Ark, do yourself a favor. Another, only Walt Disney has been nominated for more Oscars than John Williams. He’s been nominated 53 times. He’s won five. Which honestly is not that great.

‘But good luck tonight. Business is booming. I know people like to debate now which is better, movies or TV, but here’s the thing. No matter how good a show is, there are some things that movies can do that TV just For example, a TV show can’t lose $100 million.

‘Is the gang from Babylon here? They know. I was just asking if they were I was welcoming them. At least Babylon got released. Batgirl became the first superhero to be defeated by an accounting department. And then we had the big one, the long, long awaited Avatar: The Way of Water. Jim Cameron, another opportunity to do what he loves to do more than anything else – drowning Kate Winslet. 

‘The sequel to Avatar is the most expensive movie ever made. Disney spent $2 billion on this Just to break even, all of Nick Cannon’s kids had to see Avatar four times. 

‘And they did, I guess. James Cameron is not here, by the way, tonight. You know – you know a show is too long when even James Cameron can’t sit through it. 

‘Some of the cynics are saying Jim Cameron isn’t here because he didn’t get a best director nomination and while I find that very hard to believe about a man with such deep humility, he does have a point. I mean, how does the academy not nominate the guy who directed Avatar. What do they think he is. 

‘It was some year for diversity and inclusion. We have nominees from every corner of Dublin. Five Irish actors are nominated tonight. Which means the odds of another fight on stage just went way up. And while we’re on the subject of diversity, I want to say, especially those watching at home, there are a number of excellent films and performances not nominated tonight, including Till, based on a true story. Very worthy of your time, if you haven’t seen them. 

‘As is a small film called Top Gun: Maverick. The movie that saved the movies. Everyone loved Top Gun.  Everybody. I mean – Tom Cruise with his shirt off in that beach football scene? L. Ron hubba hubba, you know what I’m saying?

‘You know, Tom and James Cameron didn’t show up tonight. The two guys who insisted we go to the theater didn’t come to the theater. So if you are hoping to get a look at Tom Cruise, he’s not here, or maybe he is here, maybe that’s Tom Cruise right there wearing a Judd Hirsch Mission Impossible mask. 

‘There’s only one way to find out for sure. Judd, we are going to need you to drive a motorcycle off the roof of the theater. You know who else is here? The excellent Rihanna is with us tonight. She got her first Oscar nomination for the song Lift Me Up from Black Panther.

‘She has a nine-month-old backstage. He’s very cute. He pooped during rehearsal. You know who the last person was to poop backstage at the Oscars? The accountant that mixed up the envelopes. 

‘Rihanna is here, Lady Gaga is here. Wonderful. My god, even Elvis is in the building tonight. There he is. Austin Butler. Austin – as you know, a first-time nominee, he was so convincing as Elvis, still is. This is a good Hollywood story. Before they started shooting, Tom Hanks gave Austin a vintage typewriter in it and in it, Tom left a note written from Colonel Tom Parker to Elvis, so Austin used the typewriter to write Tom back as Elvis Presley and they got to know each other by sending letters back and forth as Elvis and Tom, which just goes to show how incredibly silly this all is.

‘You have silly jobs, but Austin, you know Elvis would have loved your performance. According to my qanon Reddit page, he still is. So we have strict policies in place.

‘If anyone in this theater commits an act of violence at any point during the show, you will be awarded the Oscar for best actor and be permitted to give an 18-minute long speech.

‘Seriously, the Academy has a crisis team in place. If anything unpredictable or violent happens during the ceremony, just do what you did last year — nothing. Maybe even give the assailant a hug.

‘Five Irish actors are nominated tonight, which means the odds of another fight on stage just went way up

‘And if any of you get mad at a joke and decide you want to get jiggy with it – it’s not going to be easy.  

‘A few of my friends you have to get through first. You are going to have to get through the heavyweight champ, Adonis Creed.

‘You are going to have to do battle with Michelle Yeoh before you get to me. You are going to have to beat The Mandalorian before you get to me. You are going to have to tangle with Spider-Man. 

‘You are going to have to  tangle with Fabelman. And then you’re going to have to go through my right-hand man, Guillermo, if you want to get up to this stage. Oh, wait a minute well, I should say — the other Guillermo. Not del Toro.

‘Yes, that one. Okay, there you go. I know he’s cute, but make no mistake, you even so much as wave at me, that sweet little man will beat the Lydia Tar out of you. No nonsense tonight. We have no time for shenanigans. This is a celebration of everyone here. You told us you wanted all the categories back in and we listened. They’re all back in.

‘That’s right. We will be showing all 23 categories live tonight. Except for one, earlier tonight, best picture went to All Quiet on the Western Front. Congratulations to Germany. We put all the categories back in because the movie community wanted it. 

‘Almost as much as the television community didn’t want it. No complaining about how long the show is. I saw your movies, now it’s my turn to make you sit in a theater for 3 1/2 hours. 

‘That doesn’t mean we don’t want to hear you speak. We want the speeches to be moving, this year, we’re not going to play you offstage, instead, we have a group of performers who is going to dance you offstage.’

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