OSCARS 2016: THE WINNERS REVEALED AS LEONARDO DICAPRIO FINALLY WINS AN ACADEMY AWARD 0 179

Leonardo DiCaprio has finally won his first Oscar for survival epic The Revenant, after six nominations.

He was named best actor at the 88th Academy Awards, with Brie Larson named best actress Oscar for Room.

Spotlight took home the best picture Oscar with Mad Max: Fury Road picking up the most awards of the night, with six accolades.

Mark Rylance won the best supporting actor Oscar, with fellow Briton Sam Smith winning best original song.

Among the winners for Mad Max: Fury Road – nominated for 10 Oscars including best director for George Miller – was British designer Jenny Beavan, for best costume design.

The Revenant won three of the 12 awards for which it was nominated.

Alejandro Inarritu also won best director and Emmanuel Lubezki won his third Oscar for cinematography in a row, having won in 2015 for Birdman and 2014 for Gravity.

DiCaprio received a standing ovation as he picked up his award, after five acting nominations and one nomination as producer of best picture nominee Wolf of Wall Street.

He thanked the director and co-star Tom Hardy for his “fierce talent on screen” and “friendship off screen” before campaigning for action to combat climate change, saying making The Revenant was “about man’s relationship to the natural world”.

“Climate change is real – it is happening right now,” said DiCaprio. “It is the most urgent threat facing our species, and we need to work collectively together and stop procrastinating.”

He asked the audience to “support leaders around the world who do not speak for the big polluters or the big corporations but who speak for all of humanity, for the indigenous people of the world, for the billions and billions of underprivileged people who’ll be affected by this”.

He added: “Let us not take this planet for granted. I do not take tonight for granted.”

It is 22 years since he was first nominated for an Academy Award, having been nominated for best supporting actor for What’s Eating Gilbert Grape.

As he accepted his award, Inarritu said it was a “great opportunity to our generation to liberate ourselves from all prejudice”, saying the colour of someone’s skin should be “as irrelevant as the length of their hair”.

It is the fourth Oscar for Inarritu, having won best director, best original screenplay (as co-writer) and best picture (as producer) for Birdman in 2015.

Larson had won praise for her role as abducted woman Ma in Room, based on the book by Emma Donoghue.

The actress thanked everyone involved in the film, including young co-star Jacob Tremblay, who plays her son.

She said: “The thing I love about movie making is how many people it takes to make it. Thank you to the moviegoers for going to the theatres and seeing our films.”

Spotlight tells the true story of how investigative reporters at the Boston Globe uncovered child abuse by Catholic priests in Massachusetts.

Producer Michael Sugar said: “This film gave a voice to survivors and this Oscar amplifies that voice.

“We hope will become a choir that will resonate all the way to the Vatican.

“Pope Francis, it’s time to protect the children and restore the faith.”

Rylance won his Oscar for Steven Spielberg’s Cold War film Bridge of Spies, in which he plays Rudolf Abel, the real-life Soviet intelligence officer who was arrested in 1950s New York and prosecuted as a spy.

He said: “I’ve always just adored stories, hearing them, seeing them, being in them.

“So, for me to have the chance to work with one of the greatest storytellers of our time, Steven Spielberg, has just been such an honour.”

Rylance, who beat off competition from Sylvester Stallone, Mark Ruffalo and fellow Brits Christian Bale and Tom Hardy, added: “It’s a wonderful time to be an actor and I’m proud to be part of it.”

Smith, whose song was featured in Bond film Spectre, told the audience at LA’s Dolby Theatre he could not breathe as he picked up his award and described his fellow nominees as “incredible”.

Smith, who won the award jointly with composer Jimmy Napes, added: “I read an article by Sir Ian McKellen saying no openly gay man had ever won an Oscar.

“If this the case, even if this isn’t the case, I’d like to dedicate this to all the LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender] community around the world.

“I stand here tonight as a proud gay man and I hope we can all stand together one day.”

Alicia Vikander won the best supporting actress Oscar for The Danish Girl.

The Swedish-born actress thanked her co-star, British actor Eddie Redmayne, and her parents, after winning her first Oscar, saying: “Eddie, thank you for being the best acting partner. I could never have done it without you. You raised my game.

“My mum and dad, thank you for giving me the belief that anything can happen – even though I would never have believed this.”

She had faced competition from Kate Winslet, Rooney Mara, Rachel McAdams and Jennifer Jason Leigh.

Beavan, who had picked up the Bafta for her costume design on Mad Max, collected her award by saying: “What another lovely day!”.

The film also won Oscars for production design, make-up and hairstyling, film editing, sound editing and sound mixing.

Wearing a leather jacket with rhinestone detail on the back and a striped scarf, she said: “It was a year of our lives in the Namibian desert, we had the most amazing crew.

“It was an incredible experience but it could be horribly prophetic, Mad Max, if we aren’t kinder to each other and don’t stop polluting our atmosphere. So, you know, it could happen.”

Amy Winehouse documentary Amy won the best documentary feature Oscar for British filmmakers Asif Kapadia and James Gay-Rees.

Kapadia said of the late singer: “This film is about Amy and showing the world who she really was, not the tabloid persona. We just wanted to make a film to show the world who she really was.”

Gay-Rees added: “This is for the fans who loved her through thick and thin, that’s all she ever needed.”

Composer Ennio Morricone won the Oscar for best original film score for The Hateful Eight. It is the first Oscar that the 87-year-old has won.

He dedicated the award to his wife, Maria.

Irish director Benjamin Cleary won the best live action short Oscar for Stutterer, which is about a man with a severe stammer.

The best foreign language film Oscar went to Hungarian film Son of Saul. It tells the story of a Jewish man forced to work at a Nazi death camp who seeks a proper religious burial for a boy who he believes is his son. It was Hungarian-French director Laszlo Nemes’ first full-length film.

The ceremony was boycotted by some Hollywood figures protesting about the lack of ethnic diversity among this year’s nominees. All 20 nominees in the best acting or supporting acting categories are white.

Host Chris Rock launched the show by addressing the race controversy head on.

He commented he had “counted at least 15 black people” in the montage that opened the ceremony, before welcoming people to the “white People’s Choice awards”.

“You realise if they nominated hosts, I wouldn’t even get this job,” he quipped. “Y’all would be watching Neil Patrick Harris right now.”

Rock added: “Everyone wants to know is Hollywood racist? You have to go at it the right way. Is it burning-cross racist? Fetch-me-some-lemonade racist? No.

“It’s a different kind of racist. Is Hollywood racist? You’re damn right it’s racist but it’s sorority racist.”

Here is a full list of winners at the 88th Academy Awards.

BEST PICTURE
Winner: Spotlight
The Big Short
Bridge of Spies
Brooklyn
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Room

BEST ACTOR
Winner: Leonardo DiCaprio – The Revenant
Bryan Cranston – Trumbo
Matt Damon – The Martian
Michael Fassbender – Steve Jobs
Eddie Redmayne – The Danish Girl

BEST ACTRESS
Winner: Brie Larson – Room
Cate Blanchett – Carol
Jennifer Lawrence – Joy
Charlotte Rampling – 45 Years
Saoirse Ronan – Brooklyn

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Winner: Mark Rylance – Bridge of Spies
Christian Bale – The Big Short
Tom Hardy – The Revenant
Mark Ruffalo – Spotlight
Sylvester Stallone – Creed

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Winner: Alicia Vikander – The Danish Girl
Jennifer Jason Leigh – The Hateful Eight
Rooney Mara – Carol
Rachel McAdams – Spotlight
Kate Winslet – Steve Jobs

BEST DIRECTOR
Winner: Alejandro Inarritu – The Revenant
Lenny Abrahamson – Room
Tom McCarthy – Spotlight
Adam McKay – The Big Short
George Miller – Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Winner: The Big Short
Brooklyn
Carol
The Martian
Room

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Winner: Spotlight
Bridge of Spies
Ex Machina
Inside Out
Straight Outta Compton

BEST ANIMATED FILM
Winner: Inside Out
Anomalisa
Boy and the World
Shaun the Sheep Movie
When Marnie Was There

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
Winner: Son of Saul – Hungary
Embrace of the Serpent – Colombia
Mustang – France
Theeb – Jordan
A War – Denmark

BEST ANIMATED SHORT
Winner: Bear Story
Prologue
Sanjay’s Super Team
We Can’t Live without Cosmos
World of Tomorrow

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Winner: The Revenant
Carol
The Hateful Eight
Mad Max: Fury Road
Sicario

BEST COSTUME DESIGN
Winner: Mad Max: Fury Road
Carol
Cinderella
The Danish Girl
The Revenant

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
Winner: Amy
Cartel Land
The Look of Silence
What Happened, Miss Simone?
Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT
Winner: A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness
Body Team 12
Chau, Beyond the Lines
Claude Lanzmann: Spectres of the Shoah
Last Day of Freedom

BEST EDITING
Winner: Mad Max: Fury Road
The Big Short
The Revenant
Spotlight
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT
Winner: Stutterer
Ave Maria
Day One
Everything Will Be Okay (Alles Wird Gut)
Shok

BEST MAKE-UP AND HAIR
Winner: Mad Max: Fury Road
The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared
The Revenant

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE
Winner: The Hateful Eight, Ennio Morricone
Bridge of Spies
Carol
Sicario
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

BEST ORIGINAL SONG
Winner: Writing’s on the Wall, Sam Smith – Spectre
Earned It, The Weeknd – Fifty Shades of Grey
Manta Ray, J Ralph & Antony – Racing Extinction
Simple Song #3, Sumi Jo – Youth
Til It Happens To You, Lady Gaga – The Hunting Ground

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
Winner: Mad Max: Fury Road
Bridge of Spies
The Danish Girl
The Martian
The Revenant

BEST SOUND EDITING
Winner: Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Sicario
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

BEST SOUND MIXING
Winner: Mad Max: Fury Road
Bridge of Spies
The Martian
The Revenant
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS
Winner: Ex Machina
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

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RACHAEL CAIN CHATS “I AM HOUSE”, CAREER HIGHLIGHTS & FUTURE PLANS 0 34

In part somewhat responsible for bringing house music to both sides of the Atlantic in the 80’s and 90’s, Rachael Cain, AKA, Screamin’ Rachael has spent more than two decades of her life as an integral part of the music industry. Having just released her new single, “I Am House”, she spoke to ThisIsTheLatest to share her career highlights, her advice for music industry newcomers and her thoughts on where she sees the music business going in the future.

TITL: For those unfamiliar with the name, or your moniker, who is Rachael Cain, aka Screamin’ Rachael? 

Rachael Cain: I’m called Screamin’ Rachael because though I’m petite I make a big impact. When I enter a room I don’t even have to say a word but I’m SCREAMIN’!

TITL: Signed to the independent label Trax Records, you played quite a big part in bringing what is now known as House music to the masses in both the US and UK in the 80’s and 90’s. How big of a deal was and is that to you, both personally and professionally? 

RC: I started out signed as an artist to Trax Records, but these days I am President. I was mentored by Sylvia Robinson, the woman behind the legendary Sugar Hill label. When you think about entertainers who run labels these days, they are all men like Master P, Kanye and Jay Z. But back in the day, there was Sylvia…and today, there is me! What I did along with a small group of friends in the 80’s and 90’s only set the stage for the amazing things happening today. I am truly living out my vision for my career and the label. I’m proud to say that though I faced a lot of adversity, we are right where we belong today.

TITL: Looking at the music scene now, did you ever think House would remain as popular, albeit maybe in smaller circles, as it is today?

RC: These days, House music is bigger than it has ever been! Just look around, it’s everywhere. It seems all the huge EDM DJ’s are now calling themselves HOUSE! We were just sampled by Kanye West. In fact, he and Drake had a major beef over our beat that made it into Rolling Stone Magazine! I always knew that House Music was very special, and I always believed that someday the world would appreciate its importance.

TITL: You released your new single “I Am House” yesterday. What’s the story behind it and why did you decide that now was the right time to release such a track?

RC: The project was done with Joe Smooth, and the idea between us simply flowed. Joe came up with the title and a banging track. We decided to tell our story about the house lifestyle that we live. We‘re truly blessed. Beyond that, our mission is to bring people together and that’s what the spirit of House Music is all about. At the same time it’s tongue-in-cheek and fun! That’s why I live for and love House Music!

TITL: Are there plans for a new EP or album in the works? 

RC: Yes. Three years ago, I released a complete body of my work, “The Queen Of House” album. I’ve been putting together some great new work for the last year and a half, which includes collaborations with artists from the home of House in Chicago and some of my favorite artists from around the world. I am aiming for a spring release.

TITL: Any performances lined up you can tell me about? 

RC: There will be pop up shows everywhere for “I am House,” including a Holiday fundraiser at Vaunt in Chicago’s Water Tower Place. We will keep you posted via our website. It’s always been a dream of mine to get into the movie business. So at the moment we are rapping up our fourth film in NYC with director Eric Rivas. I’m acting as well as putting together the soundtrack. You can catch our first three movies, The Vamp Bikers Trilogy, on most digital platforms right now, distributed through Sony Orchard, the largest distributor of independent films. After we wrap up the fourth film, Japanese Borsch, I’ll finish up my album. Then you can catch me performing at Midem, the international music festival this spring in Cannes, France to launch it!

TITL: Having been a part of the industry now for more than two decades, do you think it’s improved, gotten worse or are things the same? 

RC: Change is always good. The minute we stop changing we are dead! The most important ability a human has is the ability to change and grow.

TITL: Could you pick the top three highlights of your career so far? 

RC: There are way too many wonderful highlights, so I’m going to pick the top 3 that come to mind.

1. Performing at The Fauna Primavera Festival in Chile with Marshall Jefferson. And Robert Owens on the Trax Stage.

2. Recording “Our House is Funkdified” in the studio with the George Clinton, producing and directing the vocals. 3.

3. Singing “Give Peace a Chance” in Central Park with Yoko Ono, Sean Lennon, Bob Geldolf, Jackson Brown, Afrika Bambaataa and a host of others.

It all seems like one great big dream!

TITL: Would you agree that social media is having a vast impact on artists and their careers today and do you think that needing to be so socially connected is a good or a bad thing? How do you personally feel about the likes of Twitter and Facebook? 

RC: Social media is both good and bad, yin and yang. I’m not great at it, I don’t have enough time for it, and frankly I’d personally rather be creating! But it really works well to break in for some people. I’m just glad I had history and credibility before it took over. Today people are judged more by their social media numbers than their talent. However, I really respect the rare breed that can be really talented and successful at social media at the same time.

TITL: What advice would you give to anyone wanting to make their way in the music world? What three traits would you say they need to have in order to just get their foot in the door of this cut-throat industry?

RC: Here are the 3 traits I consider most important to get into this industry:

1. Be strong and true to your soul.

2. Decide that nothing can stop you.

3. Believe with all your heart.

If you have any doubts, don’t pick this life.

Never do it for the money because there are lots of easier ways to make that.

If fame is the only thing that drives you, no matter where it gets you, you will be very disappointed in the end.

TITL: Given how much people’s tastes in music change, what kinds of music do you foresee people listening to – and how – and seeing live five, ten years from now, and do you think artists can and will keep up with the constant evolution that occurs in the business? 

RC: Great music will always stand out. No matter what, a great piece of music will never lose its magic. How we will be listening and watching music is something no one can truly foresee, however I hope there’s a chance that we might go back to something more organic and live. However 3D holographic experiences are already part of the gaming aspect so who knows? I just hope we just don’t have things implanted in our bodies…

TITL: Finally then, having already seen numerous changes in the past two decades, where do you see the music industry going in the future and many years down the line, what would you want people to say about you when asked about your music and its place in history? 

RC: The music industry is growing and changing every day, and I’m glad that I’ve never been afraid to grow with it and accept its changes. One day I hope people will be inspired by my life and say Screamin’ Rachael was really an amazing woman! I love listening to her sound and I really respect the fact that she helped to shape a genre that changed the world of music…her story gave me courage to believe in my dreams and myself.

Check out “I Am House” below and to keep up to date with Rachael Cain, visit her website or follow her on Twitter. Header photo credit: Billy Hess.

BLISSBLISS SHARE THE VIDEO FOR NEW SINGLE “BULLETPROOF” 0 45

Blending their varied tastes and musical influences that range from rock and jazz to pop and R&B, BlissBliss have always made music that is truly unique to who they are, both personally and professionally, and showcase this through each and every one of their releases. Following on from previous single “I’m Coming Through”, which was released in September, the duo – Renee and Lang Bliss – have today unveiled the video for their latest track “Bulletproof”, and ThisIsTheLatest are delighted to premiere it to the world.

Asked about the track, taken from their EP 3, which was released last month, the pair said:

“We loved the way that Bulletproof turned out. It originally began with a very different concept but using the same title. But as we saw the theme of relationships developing on the EP, the thought of a couple who constantly fought, wanting love to make them Bulletproof, felt like a really great direction.”

Check out the video for “Bulletproof” below and for more information on BlissBliss, visit their website, give their page a like on Facebook or follow them on Twitter. Header photo credit: Jose Guzman Colon.