After Kobe Bryant won an Oscar for best animated short, the former NBA champion took a question backstage in the press room about his “sheroes” by naming two Hollywood powers: Oprah Winfrey and Shonda Rhimes.
“The first person I called was Oprah,” Bryant said of his decision to start his own studio, adding that Winfrey has long been a mentor and that she spent over an hour with him on the phone, going into great detail about how she built her studio, Harpo.
Rhimes invited him to visit her production company, Shondaland, Bryant said.
Disgraced producer Harvey Weinstein — a perennial Oscars fixture — wasn’t at Sunday’s Academy Awards but his presence still loomed large.
Host Jimmy Kimmel ribbed the mogul and others sullied by harassment scandals in his opening monologue, and the ceremony was peppered with additional commentary on Time’s Up, diversity and more.
But the most explicit moment addressing the watershed moment came in the form of three Weinstein accusers — Ashley Judd, Anabella Sciorra and Salma Hayek — speaking to the effects ushered in by the producer’s downfall.
Social media wanted an encore after Tiffany Haddish and Maya Rudolph took the stage to present the short-film Oscars and assure the audience that despite the number of black people onstage, they shouldn’t worry: There were still plenty of white folks to come.
The women might as well have been auditioning together for a buddy movie, starring roles in a TV series or — watch your back, Jimmy Kimmel — the hosting gig at next year’s Academy Awards. Social media was calling for all of that.
Some even suggested Haddish and Rudolph run on the same ticket in 2020.