Anne Hathaway has gone from propping up leaden sidekick James Franco at the Academy Awards to hefting a golden statue of her own with a Supporting-Actress Oscar win as a doomed mother-turned-prostitute in the musical Les Miserables.
Christoph Waltz won his second supporting-actor Oscar for a Tarantino film, this time as a genteel bounty hunter in the slave-revenge saga Django Unchained.
Anne Hathaway, whose perkiness helped carry her and the listless Franco through an ill-starred stint as Oscar hosts two years ago, is the third performer in a musical to win supporting actress during the genre's resurgence in the last decade.
"It came true," said Anne Hathaway, who joins 2002 supporting-actress winner Catherine Zeta-Jones for "Chicago" and 2006 recipient Jennifer Hudson for "Dreamgirls." Hathaway had warm thanks for Les Miz co-star Hugh Jackman, with whom she once sang a duet at the Oscars when he was the show's host.
Anne Hathaway's Oscar came for her role as noble but fallen Fantine in the big-screen adaptation of the Broadway smash that was based on Victor Hugo's epic novel of revolution, romance and redemption in 19th century France.
In a choked voice, Waltz offered thanks to his character and "to his creator and the creator of his awe-inspiring world, Quentin Tarantino."
Waltz also offered gracious thanks to his supporting-actor competitors, who included two-time Oscar winner Robert De Niro and Oscar recipient Tommy Lee Jones, who had been considered a slim favorite over Waltz for the prize.
A veteran performer in Germany and his native Austria, Waltz had been a virtual unknown in Hollywood when Tarantino cast him as a gleefully evil Nazi in 2009's Inglourious Basterds, which won him his first Oscar.
Christoph Waltz has since done a handful of other Hollywood movies, but it's Tarantino who has given him his two choicest roles. Backstage, Waltz had a simple explanation for why the collaboration works.
"Quentin writes poetry, and I like poetry," Waltz said.
The foreign-language prize went to Austrian filmmaker Michael Haneke's old-age love story "Amour," which had been a major surprise with five nominations, including picture, director and original screenplay for Haneke and best actress for Emmanuelle Riva, who turned 86 on Sunday and would be the oldest acting winner ever.
The top prize winner at last year's Cannes Film Festival, Amour follows the agonizing story of an elderly man (Jean-Louis Trintignant) tending his wife (Riva) as she declines from age and illness.
Haneke thanked his own wife for supporting him in