On Sunday night (February 26), Oscar was a man and a Muppet.
Clad in white tuxedos and crashing cymbals, comedians Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis presented the Academy Award for Best Original Song to “Man or Muppet” from The Muppets, with music and lyrics by Bret McKenzie. The ditty bested its only competitor, “Real in Rio” from “Rio” (music by Sergio Mendes and Carlinhos Brown, lyrics by Siedah Garrett).
“Wow, thank you, Academy,” McKenzie enthused during his acceptance speech. “I grew up in New Zealand watching ‘The Muppets’ on TV and never dreamed I’d get to work with them. I was genuinely starstruck when I met Kermit the Frog. But when you get to know him, he’s just a frog, and like many stars here, he’s shorter in real life.”
“The Muppets” writer/star Jason Segel and new Muppet Walter performed the melancholy song in the film, marking a pivotal (and perhaps even existential) moment in the comedy. When MTV News caught up with Segel on the Oscars red carpet to ask whether he was disappointed that the number would not be performed at the ceremony, the actor assured us that he took it all in stride. “I feel bad for the world, but personally, I can handle it,” he said. “I’m honored to be here, truly.”
The Best Original Song win wasn’t the only Muppets moment during the 84th annual Academy Awards. Earlier in the evening, Kermit, sporting a Brooks Brothers tuxedo, and Miss Piggy, in a form-fitting cream-colored Zac Posen gown, introduced Cirque du Soleil’s cinema-inspired performance.
The MTV Movies team has the 2012 Oscars covered! Keep it locked at MTV.com all night and beyond for updates on the night’s big winners and the best red-carpet fashion. Join the live conversation by tweeting @MTVNews with the hashtag #Oscars.