After approaching the microphone to deliver her acceptance speech for the Best Supporting Actress Oscar on Sunday, I, Tonya‘s Allison Janney did what pretty much any other performer in her position would be vilified for doing: she thanked herself. “I did it all by myself,” she exclaimed to cheers and laughter from the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. She was joking, of course, but considering her character LaVona’s self-assuredness, it made complete sense. Even so, she felt the need to clarify once the laughs had died down: “Okay, nothing further from the truth.”
In actuality, Janney was plenty thankful to her “I, Tonya family.” She was especially forthcoming about her indebtedness to fellow Oscar nominee Margot Robbie, who played Tonya Harding in the film, the movie’s director Craig Gillespie, and the scene-stealing bird she claimed had “elevated” her work. Of course, with Janney winning the trophy for playing Harding’s abusive and estranged mother, that meant that the category’s other mother, Lady Bird‘s Laurie Metcalf, was left without a statuette to call her own. Janney was the favorite to win the Best Supporting Actress Oscar, but Metcalf’s loss will likely sting for many others who preferred her.
As the New York Times‘s Dave Itzkoff aptly framed the situation, “I never wanted a world where we had to choose between Allison Janney and Laurie Metcalf.”