Gravity dominates, Murray's touching Ramis tribute + more sci-fi Oscar highlights

The 86th Academy Awards have come and gone, and it turned out to be a pretty big night for sci-fi and fantasy film.

Though it lost the coveted Best Picture award to 12 Years a Slave, Alfonso Cuaron's space-survival epic Gravity did earn the most Oscars of any film this year, picking up seven awards out of 10 nominations, including two for Cuaron: Best Director and Best Editing (which he shared with Mark Sanger). The other five Oscars earned by Gravity included Best Original Score for Steven Price; Best Sound Editing for Glenn Freemantle; Best Sound Mixing for Skip Lievsay, Niv Adiri, Christopher Benstead, and Chris Munro; Best Cinematography for Emmanuel Lubezki; and Best Visual Effects for Tim Webber, Chris Lawrence, Dave Shirk, and Neil Corbould. The film was expected to perform well in the technical categories, and it lived up to expectations, leaving the ceremony with four more Oscars than the other two big winners on the night (12 Years a Slave and Dallas Buyers Club, which took home three awards each). Cuaron (pictured above) also made history Sunday night, becoming the first Latino filmmaker ever to win the Best Director Oscar.

Gravity wasn't the only sci-fi or fantasy film that had a good night, though. The Walt Disney Pictures animated blockbuster Frozen also took home two awards: Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song for "Let It Go" by Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez (the win completed the coveted "EGOT" cycle -- Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony Award wins -- for Robert Lopez). Writer/director Spike Jonze also took home his first Oscar for Best Original Screenplay for his sci-fi romance Her, and the futuristic short Mr. Hublot took home Best Animated Short Film. 

The most powerful moment of the evening for sci-fi fans, though, might not have come from any award victories. For many of us, it came courtesy of Bill Murray, who made a somewhat rare Oscar appearance to present the Best Cinematography award alongside American Hustle and Her star Amy Adams. After a montage naming each of the five nominees, Murray decided to use his moment onstage to pay a quick tribute to his friend and Ghostbusters collaborator Harold Ramis, who passed away a week ago. Check out the video below to see how he did it. 

Ramis' name and picture also appeared in the ceremony's annual "In Memoriam" montage later in the night, but Murray's mention of him, and the warm ovation that followed, was a powerful reminder of Ramis' lasting impact on the film world. 

To see the full list of winners from last night's Oscars, visit the awards' official website.

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