High points from the af­ter-par­ties

USA TODAY US Edition - - LIFE - An­drea Man­dell and Jaleesa M. Jones USA TO­DAY

The Gov­er­nors LOS AN­GE­LES Ball is the el­e­gant, joy­ful (and gen­er­ally con­tro­versy-free) bash where A-list stars kick back and en­joy the spoils of their wins.

But Sun­day night’s epic Oscars flub changed much of that.

Though the glam­orous af­fair was still rock­ing, with cham­pagne flow­ing and Wolf­gang Puck caviar and truf­fle-stuffed treats cir­cling on trays, the chatter heard from cor­ner to cor­ner was of that jaw­drop­ping best-pic­ture flub, which saw Faye Du­n­away and War­ren Beatty an­nounc­ing La La Land had won, when in fact, the prize be­longed to Moon­light.

Weird­est night ever? “Wasn’t it?” said Ezra Edel­man, who was cel­e­brat­ing his best-doc­u­men­tary-fea­ture win for O.J.: Made in Amer­ica.

“I would not wish that sit­u­a­tion on my worst en­emy,” said David Oyelowo. “That was a tough way to find that you lost and a tough way to find out that you won. No one could re­ally cel­e­brate as fully as they would like, but I’m elated for the Moon­light cast and I feel bad for the La

La Land folks.” Naomie Har­ris, who stars in

Moon­light, agreed it was an odd night for the cast.

“It was such a weird mo­ment and I think it’s only now that we’re re­ally able to process it,” she said. “And it’s ab­so­lutely ex­tra­or­di­nary, given that we’re a tiny in­die movie, a movie that was made for $1.5 mil­lion and did not have the pub­lic­ity bud­get that a movie like La La Land had and those other big-bud­get movies. It’s a tes­ta­ment to how this film touched peo­ple.”

Now, there was still par­ty­ing to do. Guests hit the dance floor to the tunes of Don’t Stop ’Til You

Get Enough and Le Freak, and hun­gry stars took over small cir­cu­lar ta­bles to grab a bite.

Dev Pa­tel held court at a ta­ble with his mother while nosh­ing on dessert, and nearby, Vi­ola Davis sat with her hus­band, Julius Ten­non, and friends, snack­ing on Puck’s mini chicken pot pie.

Around 10:45 p.m., La La Land di­rec­tor Damien Chazelle made his exit, his Os­car for best di­rec­tor in hand. Shortly af­ter, at 11 p.m., Riz Ahmed and An­drew Garfield headed out, too.

“See you later!” Garfield called out to a friend. As the party wound down, the

Moon­light crew gath­ered in­side the roped-off en­grav­ing sta­tion, where stars go to get their cus­tom name­plates af­fixed to their Oscars.

Af­ter gra­ciously tak­ing self­ies with sev­eral fans, Ma­her­shala Ali was the last star to get his name en­graved. He then joined a tex­ting Barry Jenk­ins on a couch nearby (the per­fect time, it turns out, for Ali to sam­ple a clas­sic Gov­er­nors Ball treat: Os­car­shaped smoked-sal­mon bites).

Di­rec­tor Ava Du­Ver­nay put the evening ’s chaos in per­spec­tive.

“You know, one of the things I hope doesn’t get over­shad­owed is this was a $1.5 mil­lion in­die film about a black, gay, poor man ... and that’s a very sig­nif­i­cant thing,” she said.

“Usu­ally for black films, it has to be a pe­riod piece to get rec­og­nized. This was a con­tem­po­rary piece. ... I’m proud of them, and I’m proud of the academy for hon­or­ing that.”


Oc­tavia Spencer, left, nom­i­nee for best sup­port­ing ac­tress for Hid­den

Fig­ures, and her co-star Janelle Monáe were ready to party af­ter the show.


Shar­ing the glory: Emma Stone’s brother, Spencer Stone, takes tem­po­rary cus­tody of his sis­ter’s cov­eted best-ac­tress Os­car.


Moon­light’s Ma­her­shala Ali, Os­car win­ner for best sup­port­ing ac­tor, gets his name en­graved on his golden stat­uette.

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