Academy Awards 2021: Viola Davis, Anthony Hopkins, and More Break Guinness World Records

The 93rd Academy Awards took place in Los Angeles on Apr. 25, 2021. Find out who won Best Picture this year, plus those winners and nominees who are breaking Guinness World Records™ — and glass ceilings — in Hollywood at the 2021 Academy Awards.

Viola Davis at the Academy Awards 2021
Viola Davis | ABC via Getty Images

Best Picture, Best Actor, and Best Actress at the 2021 Oscars

The 2021 Oscars ceremony, which honored the movies released in 2020, took place in Union Station. There was also some correspondence from the Dolby Theatre at the Hollywood & Highland Center. 

Nomadland won Best Picture at the 2021 Oscars. The film stars Frances McDormand, Peter Spears, Mollye Asher, Dan Janvey and was directed by Chloé Zhao. Daniel Kaluuya shocked audiences with his acceptance speech for Actor in a Supporting Role for Judas and the Black Messiah. Plus, Yuh-Jung Youn won Actress in a Supporting Role for Minari.

Sir Anthony Hopkins took home the Academy Award for Best Actor for his role in The Father. Meanwhile, Francis McDormand won Best Actress for her leading role in Nomadland.

Academy Award winners 2021

The other 2021 Oscar winners are: 

  • Animated Feature Film — Soul, Pete Docter and Dana Murray
  • Cinematography — Mank, Erik Messerschmidt
  • Costume Design — Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Ann Roth
  • Directing — Chloé Zhao, Nomadland
  • Documentary (Feature) — My Octopus Teacher, Pippa Ehrlich, James Reed and Craig Foster
  • Documentary (Short) — Colette, Anthony Giacchino and Alice Doyard
  • Film Editing — Sound of Metal, Mikkel E. G. Nielsen
  • International Feature Film — Another Round, Denmark
  • Makeup and Hair Styling — Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Sergio Lopez-Rivera, Mia Neal and Jamika Wilson
  • Original Score — Soul, Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross and Jon Batiste
  • Original Song — “Fight for You,” Judas and the Black Messiah; Music by H.E.R. and Dernst Emile II; Lyrics by H.E.R. and Tiara Thomas
  • Production Design — Mank, Donald Graham Burt; Set Decoration: Jan Pascale
  • Short Film (Animated) — If Anything Happens I Love You, Will McCormack and Michael Govier
  • Short Film (Live Action) — Two Distant Strangers, Travon Free, and Martin Desmond Roe
  • Sound — Sound of Metal, Nicolas Becker, Jaime Baksht, Michellee Couttolenc, Carlos Cortés and Phillip Bladh
  • Visual Affects — Tenet, Andrew Jackson, David Lee, Andrew Lockley and Scott Fisher
  • Writing (Adapted Screenplay) — The Father, Christopher Hampton and Florian Zeller
  • Writing (Original Screenplay) — Promising Young Woman, Emerald Fennell

Of the nominees and winners at the 2021 Oscars, several of them broke some Guinness World Records™.

Viola Davis and Steven Yeun set records for the Best Actress and Best Actor categories at the 2021 Oscars

While Davis did not win for her role in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, she did break the Guinness World Record™ as the first Black female actor to receive the most Oscar Nominations. In the past, Davis has been nominated for her roles in Doubt and The Help. In 2016, Davis was nominated for and won Best Supporting Actress for her role in Fences. 

Steven Yeun is another Guinness World Record™ breaker this year. He is the first Asian-American to be nominated for Best Actor at the 2021 Oscars. 

Sir Anthony Hopkins is the oldest star to win Best Actor at the Academy Awards

At 83-years-old, Hopkins took the title of oldest actor to win an Oscar from Henry Fonda, who won for his role in On the Golden Pond in 1981. This isn’t Hopkins’ first Oscar win.

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He previously won Best Actor for his role as Hannibal Lecter in 1991’s The Silence of the Lambs. Hopkins was also nominated for his roles in The Remains of the Day, Nixon, Amistad, and The Two Popes

The 2021 Academy Awards recognize women like Chloé Zhao, Jamika Wilson, and Mia Neal in the enetertainment industry

Several other Guinness World Records™ were broken at the 2021 Oscars. Zhao is the first Asian female to win Best Director at the Academy Awards. Additionally, Wilson and Neal are the first Black winners for the Best Makeup and Hairstyling Oscar. 

“I want to say thank you to our ancestors who put the work in, were denied, but never gave up,” Neal said during her historic acceptance speech. “I also stand here, as Jamika and I break this glass ceiling, with so much excitement for the future, because I can picture Black trans women standing up here. And Asian sisters, our Latina sisters, and indigenous women. I know that one day, it won’t be unusual or groundbreaking; it will just be normal.”