Paul Hogan

Remarks at the 59th Academy Awards (On Oscar Acceptance Etiquette)

delivered 30 March 1987, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Los Angeles


[AUTHENTICITY CERTIFIED: Text version below transcribed directly from audio]

G'day, viewers.

This is my first time at the Academy Awards. I usually watch it on television, and for that reason I've been asked to come out here and speak to my peers on behalf of the television audience.

G'day, peers.

This is of course the big event of show business and the atmosphere here is pure electricity. But as a television show, it does tend to go slightly "off the boil," particularly as we drift into the third and fourth hour. What can we do about it?

Firstly, winners, when you make your speech, it's a good tip to remember the three Gs: be Gracious, be Grateful, Get off.1

Secondly, don't be too humble tonight because we have up here a second envelope. And don't get up on stage and say, "I don't deserve this award." If you really feel you don't deserve an Academy Award, just give us a wave from your seat.

Most importantly, tonight, in most categories nominees will be on camera when they announce the winner. Please, nominees, let's not have the spectacle of all four lose -- uh, non-winners, giving us this one: [fake smile].

This is the I'm-glad-he-won-instead-of-me smile.

Think of the television audience. Give us a little variety. You know, maybe one of two of you could burst in tears. Storming out of the building in a huff would be nice. Well, what's wrong with a little good old-fashioned booing.

Now, I'm nominated tonight and I realize I'm not exactly the odds-on favorite, but I traveled 13,000 miles to be here for this. I've come from the other side of the planet. And if they're reading someone else's name out instead of mine, it's not going to be pretty.

Anyway, listen. Most important, the producer of this program, Sam Goldwyn, said to me, "Everyone's really tense out there. Go out and see if you can get them to relax." Why? You didn't come here to relax. You want to relax, stay at home and watch it on television. That'll relax you.

No, no, fellow workers, brothers, workmates, you're here to sweat. This program is live. There's about one thousand million people watching you. So you remember: One wrong word, one foolish gesture -- your whole career could go down in flames.

Hold that thought and have a nice night, you hear?

1 Rhetorical Figure Asyndeton

Page Updated: 12/3/17

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