"Inception" was the most winning film with four Oscars and the critically acclaimed and early awards favorite "The Social Network" tied with "The King's Speech" for three awards.
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For the second year in a row, ten films made up the Best Picture category at the 83rd Academy Awards and for the first time in history, one of them was an animated comedy. "Toy Story 3," the Pixar animated sequel, mounted a large campaign to be honored in alongside gritty films such as "True Grit" and "Black Swan." Rounding out the list was "The Fighter," a tale about two boxing brothers, quirky family dramedy "The Kids are All Right," the tale of trapped mountain climber Aron Ralston "127 Hours," and the coming of age tale "Winter's Bone."
Millions of viewers eagerly tuned in to a youthful presentation of the 83rd Academy Awards ceremony, Sunday night hosted by James Franco, nominated for Best Lead Actor in "127 Hours" and Anne Hathaway, star of "Love and Other Drugs."
A pregnant Natalie Portman danced away with her first Oscar for Best Leading Actress for her performance as a tortured ballet star in "Black Swan." Portman joins a small list of pregnant Oscar winners including Eva Marie Saint ("On the Waterfront"), Meryl Streep ("Sophie's Choice"), Catherine Zeta Jones ("Chicago"), and Rachel Weisz ("The Constant Gardener").
After winning nearly every award he has been nominated for this season, first-time Oscar nominee Colin Firth won for his performance as a king with a speech impairment and a country on the verge of war in "The King's Speech."
The first awards of the night were handed out to "Alice in Wonderland" for Best Art Direction and "Inception" for Best Cinematography.
The winners were mostly predictable Sunday night, with most taking home awards in categories similar to those they have been awarded throughout the 2010 and 2011 awards season.
The Best Supporting Actress award was presented by three-time nominee and Hollywood legend Kurt Douglass to awards favorite Melissa Leo, who also had the honor of being the first to be censored for saying an expletive during her acceptance speech. Leo also won the SAG and Golden Globe for her performance as the mother and manager of a struggling boxer in "The Fighter."
Her co-star Christian Bale won for his supporting role and joked, "I'm not going to drop the F-bomb like she did."
"Toy Story 3" became the first of the Pixar series about a group of lovable toys to win the Best Animated Feature Film. The category was introduced in 2001, two years after the release of "Toy Story 2."