The Straits Times
Published on Feb 25, 2013

Argo takes Best Picture Oscar, Lee Ang Best Director


LOS ANGELES (AFP, AP, Reuters) - Ben Affleck's Iran hostage drama Argo on Sunday took home the Oscar for Best Picture, in a unique presentation done by Jack Nicholson in Hollywood and First Lady Michelle Obama by videolink.

On Nicholson's cue, Obama - in a glittering silvery gown as stunning as any worn by the stars inside the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood - opened the envelope at the White House and declared Argo the winner.

"I want to thank Canada. I want to thank our friends in Iran, who live under terrible circumstances," said Affleck, a director and producer of the film, speaking at top speed in the very last minutes of the live prime-time Oscar broadcast.

It is the first Best Picture winner not to be nominated for Best Director since 1989's Driving Miss Daisy. But despite the omission of Affleck - or perhaps buoyed by it - Argo emerged as the Oscar favorite, winning top honours from the directors, producers, screen actors and writers guilds.