Oscars: Australia Celebrates Golden Girls Cate Blanchett, Catherine Martin and Beverly Dunn
SYDNEY – Cate Blanchett and Catherine Martin were the two leading ladies of Australian film at the 2014 Academy Awards, taking three Oscars between them.
Martin's The Great Gatsby set designer, Beverly Dunn, made it a total of four golden statuettes for the Aussies, breaking several records at the same time.
Martin is now Australia's most prolific Oscar winner. Her awards yesterday for best costume design and best art direction on husband Baz Luhrmann's Gatsby mirrored the Academy Awards she received in 2002 for Moulin Rouge.
Blanchett's best actress nod for Blue Jasmine makes her the most lauded Australian actor at the Academy Awards, following her best supporting actress win for The Aviator in 2004.
Their wins were front-page news in Australia, with News Corps' Herald Sun newspaper declaring: "Academy Award Best Actress winner Cate Blanchett delivers an Oscar-winning speech."
All three winners paid tribute to their co-creators in Australia and the talent pool they said exists there.
Winning her first Oscar for best art decoration on The Great Gatsby, set designer Dunn, who along with many on the team have worked with Martin for 25 years, said: "Believe you me, on Gatsby there were many, many talented technicians who worked on the film," she said.
Later Dunn said in interviews, "Just hats off to Australia in general. It's great [that] Australian technicians and actors are recognized across the world and Cate made such a lovely speech, too. I was so proud to be Australian."
Blanchett in her acceptance speech said, "There is so much talent in Australia. CM and I are just the tip of the iceberg."
She also gave a shout-out to her colleagues at the Sydney Theatre Company, where she was co-artistic director for six years alongside husband Andrew Upton until last year, when she handed over the job to him. "They have made me a better actress," she revealed.
In turn, reps for the company said they were "all bursting with pride" for Blanchett, adding: "Congratulations and love from everyone at Sydney Theatre Company."
While there were a number of private Oscar-watching lunches around Sydney -- the ceremony was broadcast live by Australia's Nine Network from noon to 3.30 p.m. Monday local time – Luhrmann was ensconced in rehearsals for Strictly Ballroom, his new musical based on his first film, which opens in Sydney later this month.
He managed to tweet praise for Martin's first win during the ceremony, however, writing: "That's my girl! One down, one to go!"