From Absurd Acceptance Speeches to Wacky Skits, See the Craziest Moments to Happen at the Independent Spirit Awards

Get your popcorn hot and ready!

By Alyssa Morin Feb 21, 2019 11:00 AMTags
Steve Coogan, Frank Coraci, Independent Spirit Awards craziest momentsKevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Before the 2019 Oscars air on Sunday night, die-hard movie enthusiasts will tune into the 2019 Film Independent Spirit Awards on Saturday, Feb. 23.

This year, Aubrey Plaza is hosting the star-studded event, which she said she's "so excited" about.

"I am so excited to host the Independent Spirits Awards 2019," the Legion star wrote on Instagram when she announced her hosting duties. "Cannot wait to summon the spirits of Indie Past and bring it back old school. Forget what you know. This one is for the freaks."

The eccentric event, which is celebrating its 34th year, is known for being the black sheep of awards season—in the best way, of course.

Nothing ever really feels formulaic about the show. For the most part, the Independent Spirit Awards are full of spontaneous moments, which is why plenty of unforgettable and crazy things have happened over the years.

The Craziest Moments Ever to Happen at the Independent Spirit Awards

One example of how free-spirited the show can be is when Derek Connolly was literally speechless during his acceptance speech for Best First Screenplay.

The screenwriter won for Safety Not Guaranteed, but he was so shocked over the win, he couldn't get the words out. Luckily, Bryan Cranston came to the rescue and poured Connolly a glass of alcohol, which helped!

Keep scrolling through our gallery to see more wild and wacky moments from the Independent Spirit Awards. From Kristen Wiig dressing as an old lady to Bill Murray's comedic speech in 2004, this list has it all.

Kristen Wiig

The 45-year-old actress livened up the stage when she performed her Fay Fontaine sketch last year. Wearing a big, blonde Dolly Parton-esque wig, sunglasses as large as Iris Apfel's bifocals and a glam outfit, Wiig's skit was just as good as her Target lady character.

Derek Connolly and Bryan Cranston

The screenwriter was literally speechless during his acceptance speech for Best First Screenplay in 2013. He won for Safety Not Guaranteed, but he was so shocked over the win, he couldn't spit out the right words. Bryan Cranston came to the rescue and went on stage to pour Connolly a glass of liquor to loosen up. It most certainly helped.

Mickey Rourke

Giving one of the more odd acceptance speeches in the history of awards shows, Mickey Rourke talked about everything from Eric Roberts' career to beating "someone's ass" to admitting he couldn't remember who to thank.

Steve Coogan and Frank Coraci

Audience members thought Christan Bale and Joaquin Phoenix were taking the stage to present Best Documentary in 2009, but instead Steve Coogan and Frank Coraci walked out. Coogan rocked a Batman costume while Coraci wore a very Joaquin-inspired outfit.

Andy Samberg

The comedian and former SNL star made the In Memoriam portion of the broadcast a lot more nostalgic with his Breakfast Club-themed tribute. He not only recreated the famous fist-in-the-air scene, but he emulated Judd Nelson's character by wearing the iconic red plaid shirt and gray overcoat.

Rainn Wilson

The Office star admitted that most people probably thought he was too much of a "sitcom guy" and "not a hardcore indie badass" to host the star-studded show. So he enlisted Dennis Hopper to help him earn his "indie stripes." It was one of the more wacky skits to happen at an awards show.

Bill Murray

Another fun and quirky acceptance speech came courtesy of the 68-year-old actor. In true Bill Murray fashion, the comedian made a joke of how "independent" his speech was. "I have no prepared remarks," he began. "I didn't feel that would be independent."

Andy Samberg and Jack Black

When the 40-year-old actor couldn't get Quvenzhané Wallis to appear in his Beast It skit, he asked Jack Black to star in it.

Ally Sheedy

The actress made sure to soak up her acceptance speech moment after winning Best Female Lead for High Art. "I've never been nominated for anything before, this may never happen again," she started off, adding, I'm taking my f-----g time."


The 2019 Film Independent Spirit Awards will air on the IFC channel at 2 p.m. PT. Mark your calendars and get your popcorn ready!