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Regina King Opens Oscars As Emerald Fennell Wins Best Original Screenplay

Regina King attends the 93rd Annual Academy Awards.
Getty Images
Regina King attends the 93rd Annual Academy Awards.

Los Angeles' Union Station provided the new backdrop as actor Regina King opened the ceremonies for the 93rd Academy Awards. King assured the audience that everyone had been "tested and re-tested," and that while masks may be off on-camera, they were on off-camera.

King alluded to the recent Derek Chauvin conviction, saying that if things had gone differently, "I might've traded in my heels for marching boots."

But things continued somewhat normally as King introduced the nominees for Best Original Screenplay, ultimately giving the award to Emerald Fennell for Promising Young Woman.

Fennell, who was pregnant during the shooting thanked her child, "who did not arrive until a couple of weeks after shooting because I kept my legs crossed the whole way through."

Promising Young Woman is a revenge story of sorts as the anti-hero Cassie, played by Carey Mulligan, forces men to fess up to their past misdeeds. Fennell told NPR last year that she was drawing from different genres:

"I think I really set out to write and make a revenge movie that felt like it had all the pleasures of the genre, but also it was coming from a real woman," she said. "So really wanted it to be kind of an examination of real female rage. And I think life does feel like a romantic comedy when you fall in love. And it does feel like a horror film when things go wrong. And if you're as damaged and traumatized someone like Cassie is, then it also feels like a thriller drama."

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Andrew Limbong is a reporter for NPR's Arts Desk, where he does pieces on anything remotely related to arts or culture, from streamers looking for mental health on Twitch to Britney Spears' fight over her conservatorship. He's also covered the near collapse of the live music industry during the coronavirus pandemic. He's the host of NPR's Book of the Day podcast and a frequent host on Life Kit.
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