Why Best Actor Winner Anthony Hopkins Skipped the 2021 Oscars

The 2021 Oscars ceremony ended in confusion as Anthony Hopkins, who won Best Actor for The Father, was not on hand to give an acceptance speech. Keep reading to find out why he wasn't there.

By Ryan Gajewski Apr 26, 2021 5:03 AMTags
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Anthony Hopkins was involved in perhaps the most talked-about moment of the 2021 Oscars ceremony, and he wasn't even there. 

Unlike in previous years, the awards show that aired on Sunday, April 25 saved the Best Actor category for last, rather than ending with Best Picture. Anthony was announced as the Best Actor winner for his role in The Father, but because he wasn't in attendance, either in person or virtually, the night ended abruptly amid a bit of confusion. 

"The Academy congratulates Anthony Hopkins and accepts the Oscar on his behalf," presenter Joaquin Phoenix said as the telecast came to an anticlimactic finish. 

There was no mention throughout the evening as to the legendary actor's whereabouts. However, it turns out that the 83-year-old star is currently in Wales, his birth country, as he has recently been posting footage from his trip via social media. 

On April 25, just hours before the Oscars began, Anthony shared video of himself paying tribute to his late father by reciting the famed Dylan Thomas poem "Do not go gentle into that good night" at the site of his dad's grave. The poem has been interpreted as encouraging people not to give up on life. 

See the Winners of the 2021 Oscars

At one point in the clip, Anthony stopped midway through the poem as he got emotional. "Oh, god, I can't do it," he shared. "It's so painful." 

Matt Baron/Shutterstock

According to the gravestone that the Silence of the Lambs star included in the video, his father, Richard Arthur Hopkins, died just over 40 years ago on March 30, 1981 at age 73. 

Because of the unusual order of this year's final categories, with Best Picture being announced as the third-to-last award, some pundits and viewers speculated that producers moved Best Actor to the end with the assumption that the late Chadwick Boseman would win for Ma Rainey's Black Bottom. This led some social media users to complain about how the show's conclusion was handled

E! News has reached out to the Academy for comment on why the show didn't end with Best Picture. 

Check out E! News' complete coverage of the 2021 Oscars by clicking here