VIDEO: Jennifer Lawrence falls over at Oscars
Australia's five nominees, headed by Hugh Jackman, left the 85th Academy Awards empty-handed although Hollywood's night of nights was filled with as much drama as the thrilling climax in Ben Affleck's best picture winner Argo.
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Jennifer Lawrence, the quirky 22-year-old from Kentucky, has a habit of causing drama when she wins awards.
Last month Lawrence suffered a dress malfunction when she accepted the Screen Actors Guild best actress prize for her performance in Silver Linings Playbook, and at Sunday's Oscar ceremony when her name was called to collect the Oscar, she tripped walking up the steps.
"What went through my head?" Lawrence told journalists backstage at Hollywood's Dolby Theatre.
"A bad word that starts with 'f'."
The five Australian nominees, including Naomi Watts (The Impossible) who was up against Lawrence for best actress, could be forgiven for dropping a few expletives.
Hairstylist and make-up artist Rick Findlater, from the NSW north coast, and Brisbane-born visual effects wizard Dave Clayton, both nominated for their work on The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, were the first Aussies to fall.
Soon after Jacki Weaver, nominated for Silver Linings Playbook, watched Les Miserables' Anne Hathaway walk to the podium to claim the best supporting actress prize.
Hathaway was a red-hot favourite, but in her acceptance speech acknowledged Weaver and her Les Miserables co-star.
"I must thank Hugh Jackman," Hathaway said.
"You are the best."
Backstage, she continued the praise.
"Hugh is this magical alien combination of strength, soul, heart, artistry and fun," Hathaway raved.
"We looked to him every day for his strength and spirit.
"He was absolutely our rock."
Australia's last hope of an Oscar was left to Jackman, but the statuette went to Lincoln's Daniel Day-Lewis.
"I have held an Oscar," Jackman, who was expecting to lose out to Day-Lewis after the English actor dominated Hollywood awards season, said.
"When I hosted, I was juggling one backstage."
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Affleck completed his ascension from an actor in ruins to the king of Hollywood when Argo, a dramatisation of the 1980 joint CIA-Canadian secret service operation to extract six fugitive American diplomats out of revolutionary Iran, won best picture.
Steven Spielberg, director of Lincoln, was the favourite for the directing Oscar, but Life of Pi's Ang Lee was the victor.
"Thank you movie god," the Taiwanese director, who won the same award for Brokeback Mountain in 2006, said.
Les Miserables did surprisingly well, with Hathaway's and the make-up and hairstyling win complemented with Oscars for sound mixing and costume design.
Comedian Seth MacFarlane debuted as Oscar host, receiving mixed reviews, with some critics offended by some of the content of his jokes.
One song had MacFarlane naming the films in which Hollywood's top actresses, including Nicole Kidman and Naomi Watts, bared their breasts but there were no complaints from the Oscar winners.
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Later, Hollywood's elite headed into the night to celebrate or commiserate at a list of glitzy parties in Tinseltown after walking the red carpet and watching the year's Academy Awards presented.
The party of all parties on Hollywood's biggest night is the strictly invite-only Governors Ball, thrown by The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences which hosts the Oscars, a lavish affair attended by about 1,500 guests.
This is the party that draws most of the stars and is the first stop for the winners with their prized, gold statuettes, as well as for other nominees who missed out this year and the performers and presenters of the three-hour Oscars show.
Winner of the Best Actor award for "Lincoln", Daniel Day-Lewis mixed with George Clooney, who produced the Best Picture winner "Argo", as guests sipped champagne and grazed on food by celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck.
As guests air-kissed and back-slapped their way around the crowded ballroom at the top level of the Hollywood & Highland complex, singers Judith Hill and Michael Feinstein were to entertain the celebrity crowd.
British actor Daniel Radcliffe, who performed his own musical number with actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt and the evening's host Seth MacFarlane on the Oscars stage, greeted Feinstein with awe.
"This is amazing. I've grown up listening to you," said the "Harry Potter" star.
Radcliffe, who made his Oscars debut this year, praised the "exemplary" way that rookie Oscar host MacFarlane handled the ceremony that is watched by up to one billion people globally.
"His level of involvement in every aspect of the show is admirable," Radcliffe told Reuters.
MacFarlane, 39, a comedian, actor and singer who made his mark as creator of the animated TV series "Family Guy", also won praise from other stars.
"Very good, very funny and offhand, nonchalant and Dean Martin-style," actor John Travolta said.