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Oscars 2014: Winners, Speeches, Videos and LIVE Updates for the Academy Awards

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Oscar Winners 2014: "12 Years A Slave" Wins Best Picture

12 Years A Slave has won the top prize at this year's Oscars: Best Picture. The hugely acclaimed drama tells the story of Solomon Northup, a free black man sold into slavery in the antebellum South.

In a best picture race that many declared to be "wide open"—potential contenders included Gravity and American Hustle—it became clearer over the course of the night that the Academy would crown 12 Years with its highest honor. (We also predicted it!)

Well, that wraps up tonight's ceremony. Thanks for following along with us!

Oscar Winners 2014: Matthew McConaughey

Matthew McConaughey has won the Best Actor Oscar for Dallas Buyers Club. He received overwhelming acclaim for his performance, in which he lost a ton of weight to play an AIDS patient in 1980s Dallas.

Like Best Director, Best Actor was a stacked category—from Christian Bale to Leonardo DiCaprio to Chiwetel Ejiofor—but there was a clear favorite: McConaughey. This is his first Oscar and Dallas Buyers Club's second Oscar of the night.

Cate Blanchett Wins Best Actress

No surprise, but still a joyful moment at the Academy Awards, Cate Blanchett took home the Oscar for Best Actress for her role in Blue Jasmine. The actress was the favorite to win the category and win she did. Blanchett had gone strong into awards season, but there was concern that the Woody Allen scandal would cast a shadow over her nomination and potential win. The concerns were clearly unfounded. 

Blanchett previously won for her role in the film Elizabeth. 

Oscar Winners 2014: Alfonso Cuarón Wins Best Director

Alfonso Cuarón has won the Best Director Oscar for Gravity. This is the Mexican director's first Oscar and Gravity's 7th Oscar of the night.

While this was an especially stacked category—nominees included Steve McQueen, David O. Russell and Martin Scorcese—most expected Cuarón to take home the Oscar for his technically incredible directorial work in his space epic.

His win also made history: Cuarón is the first Latino to win the Best Director Oscar. 

Oscar Winners 2014: "Her" Wins Best Original Screenplay

Her has won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. Spike Jonze, who also directed Her, took to the podium to accept the Oscar. This is Jonze's first Oscar; he was last nominated for 1999's Being John Malkovich.

Her was a favorite for the Original Screenplay Oscar (not a surprise, considering the main romantic interest was a computer). It wasn't a lock, though, and bested American Hustle, among others. This win is bad news for American Hustle, which has yet to pick up a major award. 

Oscar Winners 2014: '12 Years A Slave' Wins Best Adapted Screenplay

12 Years A Slave has won the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay. The Oscar was accepted by screenwriter John Ridley, who was last nominated for a major award back in 1997 for Three Kings.

Adapted Screenplay is another big win for 12 Years. It was somewhat of a favorite heading into tonight, besting fellow Best Picture contenders like Wolf of Wall Street, Philomena, and Captain Phillips

The 'Let It Go' Oscar Win Just Knighted the World's Next EGOT

Upon winning the Oscar for Best Original Song, Robert Lopez — who wrote "Let It Go" — also won a rare achievement: he became an EGOT. An EGOT is someone who has won an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar and a Tony. Basically, it's the grand slam of entertainment.

Lopez wrote "Let It Go" for Disney's "Frozen" with his wife, Kristen Anderson–Lopez. The musical theater writer won the Tony and Grammy for his work on Avenue Q and The Book of Mormon and an Emmy for his work on Scrubs

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Oscars Winners 2014: Lupita Nyong'o Wins Best Supporting Actress

Lupita Nyong'o has won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in 12 Years A Slave. The 31–year–old essentially came right out of Yale Drama School to star in Steve McQueen's acclaimed slavery drama.

The Supporting Actress contest was pegged as one of the most competitive of the night, with most wondering whether Nyong'o or American Hustle's Jennifer Lawrence would take home the Oscar. While it's early to tell, Nyong'o's win may suggest success for 12 Years later tonight.

Oscar Winners 2014: "20 Feet From Stardom" Wins Best Documentary Feature

"20 Feet From Stardom" has won the Oscar for Documentary Film. The hugely acclaimed documentary tells the stories of the back–up singers of famous musicians, and features interviews with legends like Mick Jagger and Bruce Springsteen.

"20 Feet" isn't surprising here: while it wasn't a far–and–away favorite, the popular consensus was that it'd take home the Oscar over acclaimed Indonesian history doc "The Act of Killing" and the Netflix–produced Arab Spring doc "The Square."

Pharrell Dancing With Celebrities to 'Happy' is the Most Endearing Thing Ever

We're barely an hour into the Oscars telecast, but there've been plenty of good moments so far. One of the best — and most GIF–able — was this moment: 

That's Pharrell Williams performing "Happy," and seriously getting down with the A–listers seated in the first row at the Oscars. In case you need some IDs, those are: 12 Years a Slave's Lupita Nyong'o, August: Osage County's Meryl Streep, and American Hustle's Amy Adams. Get down, everyone.

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Oscars 2014: Winners, Speeches, Videos and LIVE Updates for the Academy Awards

It's all built up to this. The campaigning, the buzz, the lesser awards shows, all seem like a prologue to the main event: the Academy Awards. Casual viewers and hard–core film geeks alike gather around the couch every year for Hollywood's Super Bowl, a three–hour epic (4+ if you count the red carpet) of pomp, glitz and drama.

If this year's Oscars reflect the quality of this year's films, we're in for a treat: 2013 has been praised as an outstanding year for film, with good reason. We had a harrowing, technically marvelous space epic (Gravity), a landmark film about slavery in America (12 Years A Slave), a brilliantly entertaining 70s crime caper (American Hustle)—any of them could've won the top prize in a lesser year. Only one will take home the coveted Best Picture statue. 

There are a lot more categories to watch, though. The actor and actress categories are stacked with excellent performances and big questions. Will Jennifer Lawrence win a second consecutive Best Supporting Actress Oscar over breakout star Lupita Nyong'o? (More importantly, will she trip on her way to get it?) Matthew McCounaghey is a favorite in the Best Actor category — but can he stave off the Wolf of Wall Street, Leonardo DiCaprio? 

Lower on the Oscar totem pole are the other awards (sound mixing, live action short film) sometimes called the "awards no one cares about," but they often lead to some of the best and most touching moments of the night, even if they mess up your Oscars ballot.

Guiding us this year will be the wonderful Ellen DeGeneres, who returns for her second Oscars as host. She'll add a funny, affable touch to the telecast, but don't expect her to ruffle too many feathers.

The 86th Academy Awards officially begin this Sunday, at 7pm EST on ABC. Follow the drama with us on this live blog, where we'll provide to–the–minute coverage, dissect big wins and losses, and examine the moments that'll be memes on Monday.

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