Awards nights in Hollywood are often crazy ticking time bombs waiting to explode. That’s just bound to happen if you put some of the most famous people under one roof. These moments are often unpredictable, sometimes fun but often controversial, and just plain wacky. Here is a rundown of the craziest awards moments– 40 of them– that nobody will forget anytime soon.
The Most Epic Selfie Ever
Photo: YouTube [epic selfie]
Let’s begin with something positive to get our juices flowing.
The year was 2014, it was the Academy Awards , and everybody sure was feeling good and giddy. That’s when Ellen Degeneres pulled her out phone to take a selfie so epic, there’s got to be at least a total of a billion dollars net worth in there.
Degeneres managed to wrangle some of the most recognizable faces in Hollywood to partake in the photo, including Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Jennifer Lawrence, and Bradley Cooper, to name a few. The selfie held the record as the most retweeted tweet from March 2014 to April 2017 (A man seeking free Chicken Nuggets for a year from Wendy’s overtook it. It was retweeted 4.81 million times! I know, it’s ridiculous).
Kanye Terrorized Taylor
Photo: Jason DeCrow/AP Photo [Kanye-Taylor]
Let me throw you a curveball real quick with probably the most awkward and cringe-worthy moment in MTV Awards History. Swift barely even got to say THANK YOU as she accepted the award for Best Female Video before West stormed the stage and interrupted her speech.
“Yo Taylor, I’m really happy for you. Imma let you finish, but Beyoncé has one of the best videos of all time!”How can he say he’d let her finish when he just interrupted her? Just doesn’t make sense. Anyway, rumor has it that West wasn’t pleased when many of Taylor Swift’s songs from her album “Reputation” appeared to throw shade his way.
After this incident at the VMAs in 2009, they became quite friendly around 2015 when Jay-Z attempted to play negotiator and patch things up between the two. Not long afterward, West called Swift the B-word in his song “Famous” which pretty much ended any sign of goodwill between them.
John Travolta Forgot How To Read
Photo: FB Page [Adele Dazeem]
In Travolta’s defense, Idina Menzel is not a name you hear or use every day, but how could he have messed this up so bad? As Travolta introduced the Frozen actress, he blurted “Adele Dazeem” and he even came up with the lamest excuse in the history of lame excuses. He claimed he ran into Goldie Hawn backstage and was so awestruck he forgot how to correctly pronounce Idina’s name. I mean, that’s not even funny.
Not A Sober Pirate
Photo: variety.com [Johnny Depp drunk speech]
Drinking alcohol is not exactly an alien concept at any of these awards but Johnny Depp wasn’t just drunk at the 2014 Hollywood Film Awards, he was HAMMERED! He stammered, could barely stand up, and was straight up wasted.
If he came into the awards night in character as Jack Sparrow, he played it perfectly. The very best part was when he said “That’s the weirdest microphone I ever saw in my life.” After that, I just died. Legend has it he is still recovering from the hangover to this very day.
Roberto Benigni’s Insane Celebration
Photo: FB User Kwaray Blu [Roberto Benigni]
Just one look at Mr. Benigni at the Oscars in 1999 and you can tell it is the happiest day of his life. How can he not celebrate? He won two awards– one for Best Actor and another for Best Foreign Language Film. In case you’re wondering, here are some odd stats for you: He is and remains the only person in history to celebrate an Oscar Award by climbing/jumping on the back of Steven Spielberg’s chair.
What Goes Up Must Come Down
Photo: FB Page [Krist]
Rock performances and insane stunts often go hand-in-hand and the MTV Music Awards in 1992 weren’t any different. The bass-smashing bassist of Nirvana– Krist Novoselic– decided to throw his piece up in the air. Well what goes up must come down at some point, right? So, it did…right on his head!
Krist claimed that he faked like he was knocked out and Brian May gave him a glass of bubbly champagne as he sustained a cut in the forehead after the incident. The most interesting thing is, he said he still has the bass guitar in question up to this day but doesn’t play it much because its neck is a little bent.
Blame it on your head, Krist!
That Sloppy Kiss
Photo: FB Page PredictAny [Adrien Brody oscar kiss]
Making history, in an Academy Awards night no less, must be a surreal experience for anyone. Adrien Brody did just that, besting out notable names such as Jack Nicholson and Michael Caine for Best Actor, becoming the youngest ever to win the Award at 29.
In total excitement, he kissed the presenter, the previous year’s Best Actress winner Halle Berry, and made out in front of millions on live TV worldwide. At least, Berry didn’t seem to mind and Brody even made a joke of it by applying breath spray a year later when it was his turn to present an Oscar.
J-Law Falls Up The Stage
Photo: FB Page Fashion&Models [J-Law falls]
Speaking of someone who can laugh at her failures, Jennifer Lawrence is probably the best of them all. She went on and joked about it at the podium saying the audience only gave her a standing ovation because they felt bad after she’d tripped. Some media people attempted to stir up a little controversy, claiming it was staged so that Lawrence could keep up her relatable persona.
Yes, Lawrence is clumsy but she is also fun as hell. It perfectly explains her popularity.
Rainn Wilson Bares It All For Megan Fox
For a change, all eyes were not on Megan Fox. Okay, maybe for a good twenty seconds, but somehow Rainn Wilson did the almost impossible. He stole the limelight by wearing just a teddy bear and a reminder, teddy bear is not a euphemism for lingerie.
I guess, the man is just living his dream. Who can fault him for that? Anyway, the first time I saw Rainn Wilson with that sleazy teddy bear underwear/outfit, I just felt it belonged in the Internet.
Stan and Sir Elton John
Photo: FB Page Eminemology [Em-John]
Eminem was widely criticized by the LGBT community with all the slurs and homophobic lyrics in his songs. However, to everybody’s surprise, Eminem appeared and performed “Stan” at the 2001 Grammy Awards with no less than Sir Elton John. The fact that the iconic singer, who is openly gay, performed with Eminem is a BIG statement. They even shared a hug afterward and the British music icon even acted as a mentor to Eminem during the latter’s struggle with drug abuse. Even until now the two remain very good friends.
Kanye For President
Photo: FB Page DynastyHiphop [Kanye2020]
Kanye West seems not to be at his best behavior at these awards nights and the 2015 MTV VMA was no different.
In his acceptance speech for the Vanguard Award, West went on a rant about a lot of things and capped it off with the announcement that he’s going to run for President in 2020. I’m hoping he was just in a silly, ranting mood or we’re all going to have a real problem in a year! On the other hand, this could end up being one of the funniest things to ever happen, so I’m on my toes here!
Nikki’s Holy Guest
Photo: FB User James Cornwell [nikki-pope]
Nikki Minaj is crazy personified! From the time she called Miley Cyrus the B-Word while she was introducing her to strutting out in the 2012 Grammys with a pope. Or was it a bishop? Anyway, we’re just as confused but she’s totally CRAZY!
It appears the holy clergy guy was a heads-up for Nikki’s performance of “Roman Revenge” and “Roman Holiday” which has some Exorcist-like clips . Out of line? Maybe. Crazy? Absolutely, which is definitely the way Nikki Minaj wants it.
Tommy Lee vs Kid Rock
Photo: via Obsev [Tommy-Kid Rock]
Tommy Lee and Kid Rock got it on in 2007 just when Alicia Keys was performing “No One”. (Both men were once married to Pamela Anderson, so there’s some backstory here). Tommy’s version said he was simply minding his own business with friend Criss Angel when Kid Rock said he came back from a bathroom break and saw Lee sitting in his seat.
Whatever the case, all hell broke loose and the feuding rock stars got a couple of punches in before they were separated. Well, they both finished the night filing police paperwork so all’s well that ends well.
Courtney Love is Kanye Way Before Kanye
Photo: topsimages.com [madonna-courtney]
Call her attention-starved or whatever, I think this moment is really, really over-the-top crazy.
Courtney Love completely hijacked Madonna’s interview with Kurt Loder at the 1995 MTV VMAs. She even threw her makeup at Madonna and can be seen and heard talking with someone off camera. I mean, for real, Love just set the standard for Awards night feuds.
Madonna encapsulated what everyone was thinking when she quipped “Courtney Love is in dire need of attention right now.” Can we all spell A-W-K-W-A-R-D.
Who Does Lil Mama Think She Is?
Photo: FB Page Tayloe Taylor [Lil Mama gatecrash]
Oh yeah, it’s awkward and painful to watch. Of course, I’m talking, not about Jay Z and Alicia Keys’ “Empire State of Mind” performance but when Lil Mama decided to gatecrash the party and jumped on stage with the two icons.
Yeah, I mean, she’s probably not a bad person, but seriously, WHAT WERE YOU THINKING? Lil Mama said she simply looked up to both Jay Z and Alicia Keys so much that she could not control herself. We understand, but girl, you were certainly way out of line here.
Angelina Gets Weird With Her Brother
Photo: FB Page Angelina Jolie [weird angie]
OK, just to put it out there, Angie is kind of the definition of weird. She likes knives, openly admits to sadomasochism, and wears her ex-husband’s blood in a vial around her neck. But throw all of that out the window because Jolie pulled off the craziest stunt– passionately kissing her brother James Haven. This happened at the 2000 Oscars, which was followed by her telling everyone how “in love” she is with her brother after receiving a Golden Globe for Girl, and Interrupted in the same year.
Photo: FB User Sammy Juliano [Barbra Streisand]
Ties don’t usually happen in the Oscars but you know what they say, there’s a first time for everything.
It was in 1969 that Barbra Streisand and Katharine Hepburn received 3,030 votes each for the Best Actress award. Streisand starred for Funny Girl and Hepburn headlined The Lion in Winter and both movies became iconic so it’s easy to see why voters were split halfway.
It’s a good thing Hepburn skipped the event so Streisand had the moment all to herself.
Sinead Does Not Want A Grammy
Photo: grammy.com [sinead]
Every single artist wants a Grammy but apparently not Sinead O’Connor. The singer was to receive one in 1991 but did not want any part of it because it celebrates commercialism. The most ironic thing was the Grammy for Best Alternative Music Performance was for her album “I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got”. FITTING!
Sinead was only the first artist to snub the Grammys. She paved the way for big music stars such as Jay Z (boycotted the Grammy in 1999 and 2002) and Kanye West in refusing a Grammy Award.
Photo: FB Page [Eddie Vedder]
Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam is known to speak his mind, but he took it a little too far in the 1996 Grammys. After receiving the award, Vedder went on a rant that roughly translates to ‘ Winning a Grammy is cool but it’s pointless. Thanks, anyway.’
“I don’t know what this means … I don’t think it means anything,” he mumbled, “That’s just the way I feel. There’s too many bands, and you’ve heard it all before.”
Yep, typical Eddie. Took the words right out of my mouth.
Sean Penn and the Green Card
Photo: FB Page Hello Hollywood TV [green card]
Sean Penn is not exactly known to mince words, which means there will be times where he will be out of line and unapologetic. He did exactly that one time at the 2015 Oscars where he joked (or was it?) right before introducing the Best Picture winner Birdman. “Who gave this SOB his green card?”
Some say that tasteless joke ruined the Oscars but who are we kidding? It’s just Sean Penn being Sean Penn.
Avril Lavigne Butchered David Bowie’s Name
Photo: TMW [avril]
Avril Lavigne, supposedly a punk rocker, mispronounced the name of the man who gave the punk rock movement both its fuel and fire- DAVID BOWIE. I like Avril but come on, she could have at least practiced. This ruffled many feathers, including mine.
When a reporter brought it to her attention that she’d flubbed Bowie’s name, Lavigne said: “Oops! I knew that was going to happen, I knew I was going to pronounce someone’s name wrong.” Yeah, we all know that’s bound to happen but come on now, mispronounce anybody’s name but not David Bowie.
She’s Not Dead Yet
Photo: The Cut [Jan Chapman]
One of the craziest Oscar blunders of all time, somebody put the picture of a still-alive person in the Memoriam portion of the program. I mean, how crazy is that!
In the photo was Australian costume designer Jan Chapman, someone did a lazy job and thought she was Janet Patterson, who was also a costume designer. Chapman was “devastated” when she saw her picture and rightfully so. It was probably an honest mistake, but please, do your job well.
Auli’i Cravalho Got Hit In The Head
Photo: FB User Tom Quang [Auli’i]
Speaking of not doing their job well, a dancer accidentally hit Auli’i Cravalho in the head while she was performing Moana’s “How Far I’ll Go” during the 2017 Oscars. The best thing though, was that the then-16-year-old singer handled it with grace and continued like nothing happened. Really, she took it like a champ, was unfazed and proceeded without missing a beat. In one night, she just transformed from a Disney hero into a real one with how she handled the gaffe.
That doesn’t change the fact that someone should be fired.
Melissa Couldn’t Stop Swearing
Photo: FB User Jennifer Levine [Melissa Leo]
It’s probably not the first time this has happened but Melissa Leo was so taken aback by her Best Supporting Actress win in 2011 that she cursed on stage.
“When I was watching Kate two years ago, it was so f***** easy. Oops!” Yeah, it was crazy but a real moment, nonetheless.
Afterward, Leo was all apologies. “I apologise to anyone if they were offended. There is a great deal of the English language that is in my vernacular. I did not mean to offend, and (it was) a very inappropriate place to use that particular word.”
It’s OK, Melissa. It was your night.
Photo: FB User Ian Joiner [MIA]
That’s one hell of a picture right there and while you might say it’s so cool because of Jay-Z, T.I., Lil Wayne, and Kanye, they can’t hold a candle to M.I.A.’s on this one.
M.I.A (real name is Mathangi Arulpragasam) performed Swagger Like Us at the 2009 Grammys while literally on the verge of giving birth! How crazy is that? Man, she sure set the bar high. And three days later, right after dominating the Grammys stage, MIA gave birth to a healthy baby boy.
Photo: USA Today [Justin Timberlake]
JT and Janet Jackson’s sleazy Super Bowl halftime performance created so much negative buzz that both were threatened by the Grammys of exclusion in 2004 unless they apologized on-screen. Jackson simply declined the invite while Timberlake agreed, doing so after winning Best Pop Vocal Album. It took most of his speech time and was just too awkward to see.
“I know it’s been a rough week on everybody,” continuing, “What occurred was unintentional, completely regrettable, and I apologize if you guys were offended.”
It’s not that people were offended, Justin. The whole thing is just a complete eyesore.
Lady Gaga Transported In A Translucent Egg Shell
Photo: Pizzello/AP [Lady Gaga egg]
In Filipino, “Gaga” translates to “Crazy Woman” so this definitely fits the bill. To appreciate how crazy Lady Gaga was at the 2010 Grammys, you have to look at the above picture. She was literally transported in an eggshell carried by scantily-clad men servants and we haven’t even mentioned the performance or what she was wearing. Totally outrageous to think someone could really go to such lengths just look crazy.
But then again, it’s Lady G, so what do you expect? If she were to enter the stage riding a crocodile or a T-Rex, there’s no doubt in my mind that she would still pull it off.
Jennifer Hudson’s Whitney Houston Tribute
Photo: Jennifer Hudson Daily [Jennifer Hudson tribute]
This one is crazy but in a heartbreakingly good way.
Not many remember that Whitney Houston died a day before the 2012 Grammy Awards but as they say, the show must still go on. The whole show felt like a tribute to Ms. Houston but it was felt more than ever when Jennifer Hudson delivered a touching rendering of “I Will Always Love You.” It was last-minute and all, but it was heartfelt and sincere, making it probably one of the best solo performances in Grammy Awards history.
Dave Grohl Disses Electronic Music
Photo: Foo Fighters Colombia [Dave Grohl]
Rants are generally crazy and this 2012 Grammys bombast by Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl is not any different. The only thing is, I agree with him.
“Singing into a microphone and learning to play an instrument and learning to do your craft, that’s the most important thing for people to do … it’s not about what goes on in a computer.” Grohl since claimed it was simply a misunderstanding and he was not talking about a genre in particular but, hey, it’s true. Artists, not computers, should make great music.
Photo: FB Page VIP [Kristen Wiig]
Sia and wigs are synonymous but in the 2015 Grammys, she brought a different kind of wig with her– Kristen Wiig. The comedian performed a dance while Sia sang Chandelier and it was elaborate, confusing, and crazy all at the same time.
If we want to be super philosophical about, there could be method to Kristen (and Sia’s) madness. The performance, like the song lyrics and music video, show the inner turmoil and struggle of Sia and her multi-faceted, tumultuous, and vibrant personalities.
Yeah, I know. You’re not buying it, are you?
It’s All About Bey
Adele was wrapping up her night with Album, Record, and Song of the Year Awards, so she spent a good chunk of her final speech giving someone else some praise, Queen B.
“All us artists here, we f*****g adore you. You are our light,” Adele said. She also continued to praising Beyonce afterwards in front of reporters.
“I felt like it was her time to win. My view is what the f*** does she have to do to win Album of the Year? That’s also how I feel. I felt this album — I said this earlier — I felt this album was a different side of her that we haven’t seen. I felt blessed to be brought into that situation. Obviously the visual is very new and the Grammys are very traditional, but I thought this would be the year they went with the tides.”
I don’t hate Beyonce, but can we stop making it all about her? Is it that hard?
Michael Portnoy Sabotaged Bob Dylan’s Performance
Photo: FB User Joe Hobaica [soy bomb]
Dance artist (or whatever it is that he does) Michael Portnoy was hired as a backup dancer to Bob Dylan at the 1998 Grammys, but apparently he had other plans, very cringe-worthy plans at that.
Basically, he just started flailing his arms around showing the words SOY BOMB scrawled on his chest to the dismay of everyone. After a moment of disgust and confusion, he was ushered by security off the stage.
Pink Goes Acrobatic
Photo: Mario Anzuoni/Reuters [pink-acrobatic]
Pink surprised many with her aerial performance in the 2010 Grammys and no one thought it could be topped but we were wrong and happy to be so.
The singer outdid herself with her 2014 performance. She got really creative with this one, taking to the sky rather than the stage in that lacy black leotard. The most amazing thing about the performance was, even with all the twirling, there was not one moment when she went out of tune or out of breath.
Pharrell Williams’ Enormous Hat
Photo: FB Page [Pharrell’s Hat]
So far we have seen soy bombs, the green dress, the eggshell stunt, and more but Pharrell’s wacky fashion statement in the 2014 Grammys is certainly up there.
By the end of the Grammys night, memes of the hat flooded the Internet and one funny soul created a Twitter account for the accessory that garnered upwards of 17,000 followers overnight! Oh yeah, there’s an actual name for the hat, and it’s apparently called a vintage Vivienne Westwood head-topper from her 1982 collection.
The Bon Iver Win
Photo: FB Page [Bon Iver]
A lot of underdog and upset moments happen at the Grammys such as Jethro Tull beating out Metallica and Frank Sinatra winning over the Beatles, but probably the most shocking of all is the 2012 Best New Artist which went to Bon Iver (or Bonnie Bear, as they call him).
Iver triumphed over J. Cole, The Band Perry, Nicki Minaj, and Skrillex prompting everyone in the music world to go on a spiral. I mean, Adele said the Grammys likes it traditional, so how TRADITIONAL is this?
J-Lo’s Super Low Cut
While today showing this much skin is per the norm, back in 2000 this was a STATEMENT. J-Lo shocked the Grammys with this now iconic dress. With the dress being credited as one of the few items that catapulted Versace into household name status. I mean, can you even imagine not knowing the name Versace today?
Obviously J-Lo is one of the few people on the planet that could pull this kind of dress -off, but that didn’t stop South Park co-creator, Trey Parker from wearing an imitation dress to the Oscars a few months later.
Photo: FB Page Globe and Mail [mixup]
I mean, we can just tell by the look of these celebrities there’s something wrong. And it was THAT bad. I don’t know if there was ever an award show moment that came close to this blunder other than that Steve Harvey moment at the Miss Universe.
In a nutshell, what happened was Warren Beatty and co-star Faye Dunaway were supposed to announce the winner of the Best Picture. Dunaway announced La La Land and despite Beatty’s befuddlement, it wasn’t totally crazy because it was the pre-eminent favorite to win Best Picture. Chaos on the sage soon followed after La La Land’s producers had already thanked their families, their dogs, whoever.
John Horowitz, one of La La Land’s producers, was made aware of the situation (Apparently, Beatty and Dunaway were given the wrong envelope.) In a classy act, called in the Moonlight team to accept the award.
Helen Reddy Thought God… Was A Woman
Photo: FB Page Helen Reddy Fans Club [Helen Reddy]
Helen Reddy received a Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocal in 1972 and while it’s completely normal for an awardee to thank a Higher Power for the blessings and whatnot, Reddy called her God a “She”. Yep, “She Makes Everything Possible” was her statement, verbatim. Well, considering that the statement came from someone who sang a song called “ I am a Woman”, it made sense. Maybe she thinks she is God. I don’t know maybe she does. We all know how it is with these celebrity egos.
Photo: FB Page Milli Vanilli [Milli Vanilli]
Awards nights are, more often than not, a celebration of firsts but the band Milli Vanilli was on the headlines for the wrong reason: The first time a Grammy Award was ever rescinded.
The German R&B duo took home the Grammy for Best New Artist in 1990 but it was later found out Fab Morvan and Rob Pilatus were not even doing the vocals in their own songs. I mean, why in the world did you even start a band?! Their award was vacated four days later. Good while it lasted?
When Someone Streaked At The Oscars
Photo: via drraa3ej68s2c.cloudfront.net [streaking]
Streaking was a popular gag back in the day, sort of like today’s videobombing but in a more vulgar way. Well, the Oscars didn’t escape these acts but it’s a good thing David Niven was there to save the day after a man ran across the stage naked.
The quick-witted actor, who served as the host that night, quipped: “Isn’t it fascinating to think that probably the only laugh that man will ever get in life is by stripping off and showing his shortcomings?”
Oh, I love British humor!