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Hollywood's awards season so far, told through 12 images

As AAP’s picture researcher, Kristen Daly spends a lot of time finding images for clients and showcasing highlights. Ahead of the Oscars this Sunday, February 24, she provides a snapshot of this year’s fun but tumultuous awards season for Hollywood's best and brightest.

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1) Lady Gaga on the Golden Globes red carpet

After her critically acclaimed turn as an aspiring singer in A Star Is Born, Lady Gaga was considered a shoo-in for the best dramatic actress award at the Golden Globe Awards in early January. In one of several upsets on the night, Glenn Close took home the hardware for her performance as the sidelined partner of a famous author in The Wife. Still, Gaga was the winner on the red carpet in a stunning Valentino couture gown, accessorised in typically extravagant fashion with matching blue hair and lashings of diamonds.

Byline: Jordan Strauss, AAP/AP

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2) In a stunning upset, Glenn Close wins

Glenn Close secured her place as a frontrunner in the Oscar race with a rousing acceptance speech about women’s achievements that seemed especially on point in the wake of the #MeToo movement. "Women, we’re nurturers, we have our children, and our partners if we’re lucky enough," she said. "But we have to find personal fulfilment, we have to follow our dreams, we have to say 'I can do that' and I think we should be allowed to do that."

Byline: Jordan Strauss, AAP/AP

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3) Rami Malek honours Freddie Mercury

Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody appears to have pipped A Star is Born at the post as 2018’s biggest cinematic crowd-pleaser. (While A Star Is Born is full of euphoric moments, mostly involving Lady Gaga’s astonishing pipes, the tragic ending is somewhat of a downer.) Bohemian Rhapsody also proved popular at the Globes, with the coveted best actor trophy going to Rami Malek. In his speech he thanked Freddie Mercury for giving him "the joy of a lifetime".

Byline: USA Today Network, AAP/PA

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4) Sandra Oh reminds us that peak TV may be better than the movies

A Star Is Born, Bohemian Rhapsody and Green Book may have dominated the post-Globes conversation, but it was a small-screen star – Sandra Oh – who ultimately won the night. As well as hosting with Andy Samberg, the star of the BBC hit Killing Eve got a big cheer for taking out best actress in a dramatic TV series. It was an exciting moment not only for Oh, who won over audiences as a dogged M15 security officer, but also for co-star Jodie Comer and writer and producer Phoebe Waller-Bridge. This shot of the dream team joking on the red carpet reminds me of the on-air magic we'll hopefully see again when the show’s second season premieres in April.

Byline: Mike Nelson, AAP/EPA

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5) Lady Gaga and Glenn Close graciously share award

In what has turned out to be a confused awards season with few obvious winners, it seemed fitting that the Critics’ Choice Awards would break with tradition by announcing ties in not one but two key categories. Patricia Arquette (Escape at Dannemora) and Amy Adams (Sharp Objects) tied in the category for best actress in a limited series or TV movie, and Lady Gaga and Glenn Close were both named winners in the category for best actress in a drama. The joint honour may have added a generous dollop of suspense to Gaga and Close’s Oscar race, but I think the best part of this image is the grace shown by the two women as they pose together with their trophies.

Byline: Jordan Strauss, AAP/AP

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6) Crowd favourite Emily Blunt misses out on Oscars nom but wins SAG

One of the main takeaways of the Screen Actors Guild Awards was Emily Blunt winning in the best supporting actress category for her work in the runaway hit thriller A Quiet Place. Her husband and the film’s director John Krasinski teared up during her acceptance speech, and those watching on likely wondered why the Mary Poppins Returns star turned in two compelling performances in 2018 but missed out on an Oscar nomination. Your time will come, Emily!

Byline: Jordan Strauss, AAP/AP

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7) Black Panther stars celebrate SAG for best cast

When it premiered early last year, Black Panther reinvigorated the Marvel superhero franchise and has now grossed more than $1.1 billion worldwide. It’s hard to say whether the smash hit will win any of the six Oscars it’s nominated for, especially after leaving the Globes empty-handed. Nevertheless Chadwick Boseman, Lupita Nyong’o, Angela Bassett and co enjoyed a triumphant moment at the Screen Actors Guild Awards when they won the award for best cast in a motion picture – the SAG equivalent of the best picture Oscar. This image perfectly captures their jubilation.

Byline: Richard Shotwell, AAP/AP

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8. Hollywood veterans and up-and-comers dress to impress

It’s not just about the awards. Michelle Yeoh, one of the standout stars of Crazy Rich Asians, is pictured here at the Baftas, where Cate Blanchett, Margot Robbie, the Duchess of Cambridge and many more also put a fashionable foot forward. (See these and more full-length looks from the Hollywood awards season here.)

Byline: AAP/WENN

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9) Letitia Wright is Bafta's rising star

Thanks to a string of roles in Hollywood blockbusters including Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War and Ready Player One, Guyanese-born British actor Letitia Wright was crowned 2018’s box office queen – that is the actor whose filmography for the year brought in the most dough. The up-and-comer was also recognised by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, who gifted her their rising star award. Her million-watt smile in the press room afterwards made this one of the most satisfying victories of the night.

Byline: Nik Hallen, AAP/PA

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10) Rachel Weisz and Olivia Colman help make The Favourite a serious contender

Olivia Colman stole the show with her funny best actress acceptance speech, but I’ve chosen this gorgeous, atmospheric shot of Rachel Weisz, winner of best supporting actress, to convey the thrill of being the favourite (pun intended). The 18th-century comedy helmed by Greek director Yorgos Lanthimos picked up seven awards, including best British film, best production design, best original screenplay and best costume design. The sweep complicates things somewhat ahead of the Oscars, although critics are still expecting success for Roma (which won Bafta's top award for best picture), Green Book and Bohemian Rhapsody.

Byline: Matt Crossick, AAP/PA

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11. Eighth Grade is this year's indie dark horse

Bo Burnham, the director of coming-of-age dramedy Eighth Grade, and its star Elsie Fisher are a refreshing addition to the the awards circuit this year; Bo for his newcomer charm, Elsie for her amazing suits. While seasoned filmmakers like Alfonso Cuaron, Adam McKay and Peter Farrelly may have their eye on Oscar, Burnham took the Writers Guild of America screenwriting award out from under their noses. He even made a cheeky reference to the Academy’s complete lack of recognition for the film: "to the other nominees in the category, have fun at the Oscars, losers!"

Byline: Richard Shotwell, AAP/AP

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12) You can probably bet on Alfonso Cuaron winning

Cuaron is an Oscars favourite, having previously won the prestigious directing award for space flick Gravity. The almost universally praised Roma, a Netflix family drama set in 1970s Mexico City, nabbed him an astounding four individual nominations – an honour shared only by Warren Beatty, Alan Menken and Joel and Ethan Coen. The nods for best producer, director, writer and cinematographer also give weight to his views on the Academy’s now-reversed decision to relegate cinematography, editing and two other categories to the telecast's commercial breaks. "No one single film has ever existed without CINEMAtography and without editing," he wrote on Twitter.

Byline: Chris Pizzello, AAP/AP

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For these and more highlights from the Hollywood awards season, explore Kristen's curated gallery on AAP Photos.

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