How Oscars 2024 Addressed Wars In Ukraine And Gaza

The director of '20 Days In Mariupol', which won the Oscar for Best Documentary feature, said he would trade the award for Ukrainian lives.

How Oscars 2024 Addressed Wars In Ukraine And Gaza

The team of '20 Days In Mariupol' after winning Best Documentary feature at 96th Academy Awards.

The glitzy Oscars 2024 ceremony was used by some celebrities to show their support for a ceasefire in the ongoing Israel-Hamas war. Stars like Billie Eilish, Ramy Youssef, Mark Ruffalo and others adorned their red carpet looks with Palestinian flags and Artists4Ceasefire pins. Other big international events, like the Russia-Ukraine war, also featured in the speeches given by the winners. Ukraine-themed '20 Days In Mariupol' also won the Oscar for Best Documentary feature, and its director Mstyslav Chernov said he would trade the award for Ukrainian lives.

According to Los Angeles Times, Jonathan Glazer, the writer and director of 'The Zone of Interest', which focuses on the life of Rudolf Hoss, commandant of the Auschwitz concentration camp in Nazi-occupied Poland during World War II, compared one of the worst events in history to the October 7, 2023 attack on Israel.

"Our film shows where dehumanisation leads at its worst. It's shaped all of our past and present. Right now, we stand here as men who refute their Jewishness and the Holocaust being hijacked by an occupation which has led to conflict for so many innocent people, whether the victims of October the 7th in Israel or the ongoing attack on Gaza. All the victims of this dehumanization - how do we resist?" said Mr Glazer, who shared the stage with producers James Wilson and Len Blavatnik.

Mr Glazer's remarks were met by applause in the room.

Mr Chernov, a native of the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, thanked his collaborators and said, "This is the first Oscar in the Ukrainian history. And I'm honoured."

"I'm honoured, but probably I will be the first director on the Oscar stage who will say, I wish I would never make this film. I wish to be able to exchange this for Russia never attacking Ukraine, never occupying our cities," he added.

"I wish to give all the recognition to Russia not killing tens of thousands of my fellow Ukrainians. I wish for them to release all the hostages, all the soldiers who are protecting their lands, all the civilians who are now in their jails. But I cannot change the history, cannot change the past. But we all together, among you, some of the most talented people in the world, we can make sure that the history record is set straight and that the truth will prevail and that the people of Mariupol and those who have given their lives will never be forgotten. Because cinema forms memories, and memories form history. So thank you all and thank you all. Thank you Ukraine, Slava Ukraini," the director said.

'20 Days In Mariupol' follows a group of journalists trapped in Mariupol during the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

This was the second year in a row that the Oscar winner for Best Documentary Feature delivered an implicit rebuke of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The 2023 winner was 'Navalny', Daniel Roher's film about Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who died last month.