In the opening sketch, Steve Buscemi emerges on the Oscar stage to present the award for Best Actress. “Without the five beautiful, talented women we’re honoring now, their movies would only have five names on the poster, instead of six,” he says, before reading off the nominees and showing clips from their films.
Besides Schumer, we see Oscar-winners Julianne Moore and Jennifer Hudson along with nominees Maggie Gyllenhaal and Laura Linney, each portraying someone’s wife who has nothing to do but cry on the phone.
When Buscemi announces Schumer as the winner, he notes that she couldn’t be there to accept the award in person, but was available by phone. “Oh my god, I’m so happy,” she says. “First of all, I’d like to thank my hair team, hair team six, we call you guys. But more than anything, I really want to thank the writers, because you’re the ones that come up with all these dynamic roles for women. Without you, we wouldn’t be able to answer the phone. Thank you, heroes.”
“This is Amy’s first win and first nomination after wasting years of her life in comedy,” the voiceover says as the band plays her off.
Schumer’s critique is certainly valid as every year there are far more strong male protagonists in the conversation for Best Actor than there are female leads for Best Actress. However, this past year did see a win for Brie Larson, who carried Best Picture nominee Room almost entirely on her own. Julianne Moore did the same in the previous year’s Still Alice.
Her joke at the end about the Academy’s refusal to reward comedy may actually carry more weight. Schumer’s lauded performance in last year’s Trainwreck was never even a realistic consideration in the Best Actress category.