VIDEO: Dubliner Benjamin Cleary bags the Oscar for ‘Stutterer’

It took Leonardo DiCaprio 25 years to bag an Oscar. Benjamin Cleary got there in one, while Brooklyn star Saoirse Ronan is almost a veteran of the Academy Awards now, although she still awaits that golden moment.

VIDEO: Dubliner Benjamin Cleary bags the Oscar for ‘Stutterer’

Ronan missed out to Brie Larson in the best actress category, but the 21-year-old showed her roots in her dress choice.

“I wore green at my first Oscars as well. I wanted to wear green because I’m very proud to be Irish and Calvin Klein made this for me.”

She also exhibited Irish common sense, sharing her top tip for surviving the Oscars: “Eat beforehand, because you won’t get fed for another six hours — so I ate loads of food before I got here.”

Other Irish nominees included Steve Jobs star Michael Fassbender, who was pipped to the best actor Oscar by DiCaprio, and Lenny Abrahamson, who was nominated for best director for Room.

In his acceptance speech as the director of Stutterer which won Best Live Action Short, Dubliner Cleary said: “You know, when you make your first ever film, you’ve got to convince a lot of people to jump on board and take a risk with a first-time director, and, you know, to every single member of the cast and crew of Stutterer for jumping on board and taking that risk with me, I’m forever grateful. And to the Academy for this award. It’s such a huge honour. Thank you so much. To my amazing parents for all the support, thank you.”

Cleary also paid tribute to the stars of the film, about a man with a crippling stutter and his online relationship with a woman.

“Chloe Pirrie, you’re amazing, wherever you are up there. Matthew — to the wonderful Matthew Needham, you are this film, brother, thank you so much.”

Cleary finished by declaring: “Every day is a proud day to be Irish, but today even more so than usual. To everyone for all the support back home, thank you so much.”

The 32-year-old filmmaker from Rathmines wrote and directed the film and largely funded the project himself. He had the whole country behind him in the run-up to the ceremony and received countless messages of support. Perhaps the fondest message, though, was one from his old Montessori teacher… “City Montessori’s first pupil (1987) is nominated for an Oscar. Congratulations!”

Presenting him with the Oscar was nine-year-old Canadian actor Jacob Tremblay, who starred in Room and took to the stage with Beasts of No Nation’s Abraham Attah, 14.

But the more traditional — and tearful — Oscar moment was left to Kate Winslet who blubbered from her seat in the auditorium.

When DiCaprio finally won Best Actor after being nominated five times before, his Titanic co-star couldn’t hold back her tears of joy. Cameras cut to the 40-year-old actress and her husband, Ned Rocknroll, looking proudly at the 41-year-old actor on stage as he told them: “To my friends, I love you dearly. You know who you are.”

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