Do you remember 2014? It doesn’t seem that far away, but just eight years ago, Hollywood was a very different place.
A reminder: 2014 was the year of Beyonce, Solange and Jay Z’s lift stoush, the year Kim Kardashian and Kanye West got married and Taylor Swift released her hit album 1989.
It was also the year the Oscars blew up the internet with a now-famous selfie of A-list actors at the 86th Academy Awards.
The photo was basically a “who’s who” in Hollywood at the time, including the host Ellen Degeneres, Jennifer Lawrence, bradley cooper, Meryl Streep, Lupita Nyong’o, Kevin Spacey, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt.
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The selfie also made social media history after DeGeneres posted it on Twitter. He held the ‘most retweeted’ crown for three years until he was dethroned by teenage Wendy’s viral post.
“If only Bradley’s arm was longer. Best picture ever. #Oscars“, read the original tweet from DeGeneres. It has attracted more than three million retweets around the world.
A photo like this probably wouldn’t go viral in 2022. In 2014 Instagram was relatively new and we didn’t have access to celebrity selfies on multiple social media platforms like we do today.
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And according to Fred Graver, Creative Lead, TV at Twitter, the selfie wasn’t as “impulsive of the moment” as we were initially led to believe. Instead, it was a highly orchestrated moment.
In a 2017 essay on MediumGraver said the Twitter team worked with DeGeneres to figure out how to make an Oscars photo “go viral” in the months leading up to the awards.
Initially, DeGeneres was only supposed to take a selfie with Meryl Streep, who was seated in the front row.
Graver said there was a “panic” moment when a bunch of other celebs decided to join in the fun.
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“You’ll see the look of panic quickly pass over his face as his selfie with Meryl suddenly becomes a selfie with Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Lupita Nyong’o, Julia Roberts, Jared Leto, Kevin Spacey and – holding the camera – Bradley Cooper “, he wrote.
“When Bradley grabs the camera, you can see that kind of shocked look on Ellen’s face. Would he know what to do? Obviously, he did.
“The selfie was retweeted 750,000 times in 45 minutes, and in the end it ‘broke Twitter’ for a few minutes.”
For a long time, the famous Oscar selfie remained just that: an innocent and memorable selfie.
But over time, the photo has since morphed into an unrecognizable Hollywood relic.
So much has changed for selfie participants. Since then, Ellen DeGeneres has been ‘cancelled’ for fostering a toxic workplace and her talk show ended, Kevin Spacey has been accused of sexual assault, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have split in a messy divorce and the #MeToo moment revealed a horrific level of abuse in Hollywood.
Ellen DeGeneres canceled – in more ways than one
Talk show legend and comedian Ellen DeGeneres was the reason the Oscars selfie exists in the first place.
At the time, she was still hosting the 11th season of Ellen’s Show and was a beloved character in Hollywood.
Since then, DeGeneres has canceled her show after 19 years and has been the subject of a media frenzy over her toxic and “mean” behavior at work.
In March 2020, podcast host Kevin T. Porter wrote on Twitter that Ellen is “notoriously one of the meanest people alive”, asking her followers to respond with “the most insane stories you’ve heard about Ellen being mean”.
The Twitter feed was filled with thousands of replies.
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A few months later a BuzzFeed News reporter spoke to 10 anonymous former employees of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, who detailed a number of ways the mega-star had created a toxic work environment.
A former employee told them: “This ‘be nice’ bullshit only happens when the cameras are on. It’s for show. is for
The photo has since turned into a relic of an unrecognizable Hollywood
DeGeneres made a public apologies on social media and on his show. In 2021, she announced that the next season of The Ellen DeGeneres Show would be the lastbut maintained that was always his intention.
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Kevin Spacey charged with sexual assault
In 2017, three years after the selfie was taken, actor Anthony Rapp claimed the Oscar-winning actor Kevin Spacey made a sexual advance to her in 1986.
At the time, Rapp was just 14 and Spacey was 26. Spacey later said he had no recollection of the encounter, but apologized for “deeply inappropriate drunken behavior”.
Then, in September 2020, Rapp sued Spacey for sexual assault, sexual assault, and intentional infliction of emotional distress under the Child Victims Act.
Fourteen other men told similar stories after that. As a result, his new film Blood was shelved and Spacey was kicked out of the final season of Card castle.
In July 2022, Spacey pleaded not guilty to charges of sexually assaulting three men. The actor has denied four counts of sexual assault and one count of causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without their consent.
He will be in court again in early 2023.
Brad and Angelina’s messy divorce
In DeGeneres’ smiling Oscars selfie, former Hollywood golden couple Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are pictured together.
Then the couple rocked Hollywood when they announced their shock separation two years later in 2016.
Jolie and Pitt officially divorced in April 2019, after a judge allowed them to be declared single while other issues remained, including finances and child custody.
Pitt was also accused of abusing his then 15-year-old son during the robbery, but investigations have been closed and no charges have been brought against the Once upon a time in Hollywood star.
Jolie has filed for sole custody of the couple’s six children, with details of the reason for her filing slowly unraveling in a lengthy court battle.
In May 2021, the couple finally won joint custody of their children.
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