Entertainment

Hildur Gudnadottir is the first woman to win Oscar for best original score

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Key Points
  • Hildur Gudnadottir is the first woman to win in the best original score category since the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences combined all of the score categories into one in 2000.
  • Gudnadottir is one of only seven women to be nominated in any score composition category, only three have won.
  • Gudnadottir was given a standing ovation as she approached the podium.
Hildur Gudnadottir accepts the Music - Original Score - award for 'Joker' onstage during the 92nd Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on February 09, 2020 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Kevin Winter

The composer behind "Joker" made history Sunday night.

Hildur Gudnadottir is the first woman to win in the best original score category since the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences combined all of the score categories into one in 2000.

Gudnadottir is one of only seven women to be nominated in any score composition category, only three have won. Previously, Marilyn Berman won an Oscar for composing for "Yentl" alongside Michel Legrand and Alan Bergman, Rachel Portman won for "Emma" and Anne Dudley won for "The Full Monty."

Gudnadottir was given a standing ovation from the audience as she approached the podium.

"To the girls, to the women, to the mothers, to the daughters who hear the music bubbling within, please speak up," Gudnadottir, said in her acceptance speech. "We need to hear your voices."

Heading into the Oscars Gudnadottir had won the BAFTA, Golden Globe, Hollywood Critics Association and society of composers and lyricist awards for her work on "Joker."

She was nominated alongside industry heavyweights including John Williams, Randy Newman, Thomas Newman and Alexandre Desplat.

Williams notably received his 52nd Oscar nomination this year, the most of any living person. He follows just behind the late Walt Disney, who had 59 Oscar nominations, for the most Academy Award nominations of all time.

"My fellow nominees, masters of the craft, it has been such an honor to get to know you all. It's been so special," she said.

Gudnadottir's award was notably preceded by Irish maestro Eimear Noone, who became the first woman to conduct the Oscars orchestra.