Sam Smith’s Oscars Gay Gaffes: How Singer Screwed Up So Badly (VIDEO)
After the biggest night of Sam Smith’s life, the singer is not being celebrated for his Oscar-winning accomplishment, but dragged for making a number of faux pas at Sunday’s 2016 Academy Awards.
The evening started out great for Smith. A first-time nominee, he amusingly shared on Instagram the pre-show gift his father gave him: A banana with “Hope you get lucky at your after-show party” written on the peel. Smith first ended up getting lucky, in a different sense, when Ryan Seacrest surprised him on the red carpet with traditional British tea and milk.
So pleased, Smith asked to take his cup with him as he continued on with the festivities. Less than an hour into the ceremony, it was time for him to hit the stage. And despite nerves, the singer more than pulled off his performance of “Writing’s On The Wall,” his theme song for the James Bond movie Spectre.
Then, more than two hours later, “Writing’s On The Wall” was named the Best Original Song winner, and a jubilant Smith took the stage again to accept his first-ever Oscar. He said to the star-studded crowd, “I read an article a few months ago by Sir Ian McKellen, and he said that no openly gay man had ever won an Oscar, and if this is the case, even if it isn’t the case, I want to dedicate this to the LGBT community all around the world.”
While Smith received applause in the Dolby Theatre, he was immediately hit with a backlash online. Not only had he misconstrued McKellen’s remarks, but the British crooner was hardly the first out and proud gay man to win an Academy Award. Among those to slam Smith was Oscar-winning screenwriter Dustin Lance Black, who tweeted, “Hey @SamSmithWorld, if you have no idea who I am, it may be time to stop texting my fiancé.”
The rather personal dig was followed by another message on Monday morning that said, “THE POINT: knowing our LGBTQ history is important. We stand on the shoulders of countless brave men and women who paved the way for us.” And that directly relates to Smith’s other major screw-ups.
Backstage after his win, Smith was told that he was indeed not the first openly-gay Oscar winner. The singer then wrongly assumed he was only the second. “Sh*t! F*ck that,” Smith exclaimed in the press room. “Two’s my lucky number, so it’s all good.”
But it got worse from there. When Smith asked who won before him, he was informed of Howard Ashman, who received the same award twice (for songs from The Little Mermaid and Beauty & The Beast) in the early 1990s. “I should know him. We should date,” Smith said.
The problem: Ashman died from AIDS complications in 1991 (and actually won his second Oscar posthumously the next year). Before Smith commented on his gaffes, McKellen took to Twitter Monday morning to set the record straight on his end. “I’d said no openly gay actor had received #Oscars,” tweeted the acting legend. He added, however, “That doesn’t detract from @samsmithworld achievement. Congratulations to him & all others!”
Later Monday, Smith tweeted to Black, “Apologies for the mix up @DLanceBlack I’ll be sure to check out your films now x Belated Congrats on the Oscar x.” He further wrote, “Second openly gay man to win an oscar or third or fourth or 100th, It wasn’t my point. My point was to shine some light on the LGBT community who i love so dearly.”
See videos of Smith’s original comments below.
— Variety (@Variety) February 29, 2016