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Ang Lee's 'Life of Pi' wins most Oscars at 85th Academy Awards


09:51, February 26, 2013

Director Ang Lee poses with his Oscar for Achievement in Directing for "Life of Pi" at the 85th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California Feb. 24, 2013. (Xinhua/Yang Lei)

Key Words: Ang Lee; Life of Pi; Oscar Award of Best Director
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LOS ANGELES, Feb. 24 (Xinhua) -- Chinese-American filmmaker Ang Lee's "Life of Pi" won four Oscars Sunday night at the 85th Academy Awards, including Best Director for Lee himself.

The haul was a major achievement for the mystical tale, which faced fierce competition from other box office hits "Lincoln" and "Argo."

"I really want to thank you for believing this story and sharing this incredible journey with me," Lee said holding the golden statue.

The film, which has earned nearly 600 million U.S. dollars worldwide, is a philosophical adventure tale featuring a young man named Pi, who is the son of a zookeeper in Pondicherry, India. Pi finds the world he knows swept away when his family sells the zoo and sets sail for Canada with a few of its remaining animals. When a storm capsizes the ship, only Pi escapes and is set adrift in a lifeboat that is also the refuge of an enormous Bengal tiger.

The film's other gongs were for original score, cinematography and stunning visual effects.

It is Lee's second Best Director Oscar, after winning with "Brokeback Mountain" in 2006.

Although Ben Affleck was not nominated in the directing category, his film, "Argo," won the Oscar for Best Picture. As the top prize of the night, it was announced by First Lady Michelle Obama from the White House through satellite.

"There are eight great films that have every right, as much a right to be up here as we do," Affleck said in his emotional acceptance speech. Those eight were "Amour," "Beasts of the Southern Wild," "Django Unchained," "Les Miserables," "Life of Pi," "Lincoln," "Silver Linings Playbook" and "Zero Dark Thirty."

"Argo" is only the fourth Oscar best picture film whose director was not nominated.

"Argo" also won adapted screenplay and film editing.

The Best Actress and Actor awards this year went to Jennifer Lawrence and Daniel Day-Lewis.

Day-Lewis won the award for his highly acclaimed performance in "Lincoln," becoming the sixth performer to earn three or more Oscars and the first to win three times as best actor.

The Steven Spielberg epic gained a dozen nominations, the most of any film, but won only two. Its other win was for production design.

Lawrence won Best Actress for the lead role in "Silver Linings Playbook." In the film, the 22-year-old plays Tiffany, a troubled young widow who begins a complex relationship with a man recently released from a psychiatric facility. The film won her most of the major awards in the season, including the Golden Globe and the Screen Actors Guild Award.

In other categories, Austrian French-language film "Amour" won the best foreign language film, "Searching for Sugar Man" won best documentary feature and "Brave" won best animated feature film.

The almost four-hour ceremony also paid tribute to the 50th anniversary of James Bond films, with singer Shirley Bassey singing the theme from 1965 film "Goldfinger."

It is the first Oscar night since its traditional venue, the Kodak Theater, changed its name to Dolby Theater last year.

The Academy said some 282 features were eligible for Best Picture this year and the number of members voting secretly for the awards was 5,856.

It is estimated people from more than 225 countries and regions watched the telecast of the ceremony, while the U.S. audience was put at 39.2 million.

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