Oscars 2023: Jimmy Kimmel hosted the 95th Academy Awards (Image credit: Getty)
RRR fans didn't have to wait long for a Naatu Naatu reference at the 95th Academy Awards – Jimmy Kimmel, hosting the Oscars for the third time, invoked the viral number in his opening monologue. Well, we say invoked but it was much more than a mere mention. At the end of his monologue, Jimmy quipped that this year's winners would be danced off stage if they exceeded their 45-second speech limit instead of being drowned out by music. A bunch of dancers promptly showed up to Naatu Naatu around Jimmy as he said it.
It was a blockbuster precursor to the actual Naatu Naatu win for Best Original Song later in the ceremony. We don't know if any of this year's Oscar winners – among them Michelle Yeoh and Brendan Fraser – actually busted the time limit but nobody was Naatu Naatu-d off the stage (somewhat disappointingly).
Naatu Naatu was also performed live at the Oscars, as were the other nominees for Best Original Song. Deepika Padukone, stunning in black Louis Vuitton, introduced the gig and had to stop a couple of times because the audience kept interrupting her with cheers.
Rahul Sipligunj and Kaala Bhairava sang Naatu Naatu live as a troupe of dancers, among them Lauren Gottlieb, delivered a rousing version of the song originally featuring Ram Charan and Jr NTR (who were in the audience). It was an excellent effort and we'll give it second best place.
Soon after, Naatu Naatu won the Oscar for Best Original Song and the awards were collected by composer MM Keeravaani and lyricist Chandrabose.