Backstage support! When celebrities win Oscars, they usually run through a lengthy thank-you list of names, but many of them also acknowledge a person not involved in the film: their partner.
Thanking your partner from the Academy Awards stage is something so expected of Oscar winners that forgetting to do it can make headlines. In 2000, Hilary Swank famously left her then-husband, Chad Lowe, out of her speech while accepting the Best Actress trophy for her performance in Boys Don’t Cry.
The Pretty Little Liars alum, who split from Swank in 2006, later said he “didn’t feel forgotten” because he knew how nervous she was at the podium. “I felt bad for her because I knew immediately,” he told Larry King in January 2007. “I could see in her eye the second she was off [stage] that she realized that. I felt for her more than I felt for myself.”
The Amelia star got a second shot at a spouse shout-out when she won the Best Actress award again in 2005 for her work in Million Dollar Baby. “I am going to start by thanking my husband because I’d like to think I learn from past mistakes,” she said in her speech. “Chad, you’re my everything. Thank you for your support. It means the world. I would never be standing here if it weren’t for each and every one of the brilliant people I had surrounding me, supporting me and believing in me.”
A handful of other winners have gotten the chance to thank their partners multiple times in their Oscar speeches, including Mahershala Ali and Frances McDormand. The Luke Cage alum won his first Academy Award in 2017 for his performance in Moonlight and then won again in 2019 for Green Book. Both times, he gave a sweet nod to his wife, Amatus Sari-Karim.
“Lastly I just wanna thank my wife, who was in her third trimester doing awards season,” Ali said at the 89th Academy Awards in February 2017. “I just wanna thank her for being such a soldier through this process … and really carrying me through it all.”
The couple, who tied the knot in 2013, welcomed daughter Bari four days before the 2017 edition of the Oscars. When Ali won again in 2019, he thanked Sari-Karim a second time — and added a hello for Bari as well.
Keep scrolling to see which Oscar winners thanked their partners in their acceptance speeches.