In her acceptance speech, McDormand asked all the woman nominees in the audience to stand.
“Look around, ladies and gentlemen, because we all have stories to tell and projects that need financing,” McDormand said to wild applause. “I have two words to leave with you tonight, ladies and gentlemen: Inclusion rider.”
A pair of film industry veterans won long-awaited honors.
James Ivory, a titan of international art-house cinema, won best adapted screenplay for the tender love story “Call Me by Your Name.” Ivory, 89, is the oldest Oscar winner ever.
Roger Deakins, a 14-time nominee, won his first Oscar for his cinematography on the science-fiction sequel “Blade Runner 2049.” Rachel Morrison, who photographed “Mudbound,” became the first woman nominated in that category.
“Dunkirk,” an intense World War II drama that earned more money than the nine other best picture contenders, took home three prizes in technical categories — editing, sound editing and sound design.
Kimmel made light of last year’s envelope fiasco, when “Bonnie and Clyde” co-stars Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway were handed the wrong envelope and incorrectly announced “La La Land” as best picture. The actual winner: “Moonlight.”
“I do want to mention, this year, when you hear your name called, don’t get up right away,” Kimmel joked in his monologue. “Give us a minute.”
Beatty and Dunaway gamely returned to the stage on Sunday night to hand out the best picture award. “It’s so nice seeing you again,” Beatty quipped.
Among the most resonant symbolic gestures of the night: Jodie Foster and Jennifer Lawrence presented the best actress award, standing in for last year’s best actor winner, Casey Affleck, who has been accused of sexual misconduct.
“It’s a new day in Hollywood,” Lawrence said.