If you're a true awards-show fan, you can watch these things from start to finish, appreciating every obscure statuette handed out and every thank you to producers, agents, managers, childhood teachers, and moms. The rest of us simply tolerate those lovely moments of gratitude in hopes that something more entertaining will eventually take place. Sometimes, this takes the form of tearjerking speeches honoring all who paved the way to some lucky winner's achievement. Other times, the folks receiving the accolades will take their moment onstage to make us fall out of our seats with laughter.
Before we brace ourselves for a lot of self-important Hollywood types thanking each other at the Oscars, we're taking this moment to thank the folks who have tossed off the veil of reverence and gravitas. We've loved watching spontaneous joy turn into hilarity with the likes of Robin Williams, Julia Roberts, and Roberto Benigni. But just as funny are the ways actors like Amy Poehler, Anna Kendrick, Jim Carrey, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus planned bits in case they won. What's equally impressive is that no one seems ungrateful as they infuse their acceptance speeches with humor. They're just doing a great job of reminding us that they're not accepting Nobel Peace Prizes up there.