Three 6 Mafia Win First Oscar; Make Hip-Hop History
The awards took place at the Kodak Theatre and were televised with a 5-second delay on the ABC network.
Three 6 Mafia, made history as the first rap group to ever perform at the Academy Awards.
The group also won an Oscar for Best Song, for "Its Hard Out Here For A Pimp," a tune they wrote and produced for the movie Hustle & Flow. Hustle & Flow star Terrence Howard originally recorded the song under the rap name D-Jay, but declined to perform it at the Academy Awards.
Three 6 Mafia performed in their normal Hip-Hop garb, but the stage scene was set in the Memphis streets with actors and dancers sashaying as pimps and prostitutes across the stage. The performance also featured a cameo by actress Taraji P. Henson, who sang the hook on the original song and during the live performance.
The group bested stiff competition in their field, beating out "In The Deep" from the movie Crash, which won Best film of the Year.
Group members Jordan "Juicy J" Houston thanked Jesus, while Paul "DJ Paul" Bauregard "thanked everybody," including their mothers, distributor Select-O-Hits, the Academy, Ludacris, actor George Clooney and others. Darnell "Crunchy Black" Carlton and others were on stage as well.
The crowd gave the Hip-Hop group a rousing round of applause and a few quips came from in the aftermath of the show.
"You know what? I think it just got a little easier out here for a pimp," Stewart joked after the group accepted their award. "How come they are the most excited people here? They are thrilled. That's how you accept an Oscar.”
"Martin Scorsese [the legendary filmmaker] zero Oscars - Three 6 Mafia, one!" Stewart joked.
Later in the evening, talk show host Jimmy Kimmel cracked his own jokes on a special edition of his ABC late show. “I guess those guys are gonna melt the [Oscar] statues down and make [gold] teeth," he said.
Hustle & Flow revolves around the life of a small-time Memphis, Tennessee pimp, who aspires to be a rapper amidst a mid-life crisis.