Oscars 2014 live blog: Ellen DeGeneres hosts the 86th Academy Awards

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The big night has finally arrived. It's the 86th Academy Awards and all of Hollywood is turning out the celebrate. Join us the the speeches, the surprises and what are sure to be some very memorable moments.

Ellen DeGeneres hosts this year's Oscars, and in addition to the biggest movie stars on the planet presenting awards, several musical acts are slated to perform their Academy Award nominated hit songs, including U2 and Idina Menzel. 

What tricks will DeGeneres have up her sleeve? It's safe to say she probably won't sing a song about the boobs of those in the audience, as Seth MacFarlane did last year.

The 86th Academy Awards kick off at 7 p.m. ET on ABC with red-carpet coverage -- the show starts at 8:30 p.m. -- and you can follow along with Zap2it every single step of the way on our live blog. All times are Eastern.

8:30 - It's time! Better than that, it's on time. Good luck keeping it that way, producers. Ellen starts out thanking the viewing audience for their prayers during this trying time, where it's raining in Los Angeles.

She also points out the real Captain Phillips and Philomena, both of whom are in the audience.

8:35 - Ellen stresses the importance of an education, asking Amy Adams if she went to college. She did not ... stay in school, kids! She also spends some time hassling Jennifer Lawrence over falling last year ... then again tonight. Those dresses are just a bit too long, maybe.

The monologue isn't much at all like last year's, which was filled with socks and raunchiness. Ellen is relying on her skills as a comedian, delivering a pretty traditional monologue, while having good fun with those in the audience.

8:40 - Anne Hathaway is the first presenter up, and she's giving out Actor in a Supporting Role. If this isn't Jared Leto, something weird is happening.

And Jared Leto gets the much-deserved win. This going any other way would have been simply crazy. Lots of good work in that category this year, but he was on a whole other level.

He says his quick thanks before telling his mother's history, and thanking his family. That's the only time you will ever hear "30 Seconds To Mars" on the Oscars. Ever. "This is for the 36 million people who have lost the battle to AIDS."

8:47 - Jim Carrey's up next, after Ellen takes a selfie. "It must be tiring to be a nominee," he jokes. Like most of Hollywood, he's just happy to see Bruce Dern is nominated. As part of the salute to heroes theme of the night, he's introducing a video package of animated heroes over the years, from "Pink Panther" to "The Incredibles."

"Anyone else feel that was a little light on 'Finding Nemo," Ellen asks the crowd after.

8:50 - Kerry Washington then introduces Pharrell Williams as he performs "Happy" from "Despicable Me 2." His ridiculous hat is back. The hat's even become his logo, filling up the video screen behind him. It's cool, but the real star are those bright red sneakers of his.

That was a great performance, that even involved a little crowd work with Pharrell going into the audience to dance a bit with Lupita Nyong'o, Meryl Streep and Amy Adams. It's going to be a good music night.

8:57 - Samuel L. Jackson and Naomi Watts are up next best costume design. That goes to "The Great Gatsby," so at least it got some kind of recognition by coming and going from theaters fairly quickly. They're also giving one out for best hair and makeup. Please let "Jackass" win. Can you imagine how amazing that would be?

Sadly, "Dallas Buyers Club" gets the nod. You'll get them next year, Johnny Knoxville!

9:07 - Harrison Ford is out to introduce the first three Best Picture nominees and he's got a mean-looking goatee. He only fumbles his lines once, so good on him.

9:10 - Proving she's the best host ever, Ellen has scratcher tickets for the nominees who don't win. Up next are Kim Novak and Matthew McConaughey. They're here to present Best Animated Short, but seemed to have missed rehearsals. "Mr. Hublot" wins. Next up is Best Animated Feature. Of course, "Frozen" wins. 

9:17 - Sally Field is out to introduce a video package on heroes in live-action films. These aren't of the superhero variety, but every day people. The movies include "Milk," "Ali," and "Schindler's List." There's even a little "Zero Dark Thirty" in there.

9:21 - Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Emma Watson are out to present Best Visual Effects, which goes to "Gravity," of course.

9:23 - Zac Efron take the stage next to introduce Karen O's performance of "Moon Song." Only one flub of his lines. Her performance of the song is downright beautiful and a 180 degree turn on the tempo from Pharrell's earlier.

9:30 - The show moves right along with Kate Hudson and Jason Sudeikis out for the short film awards. Best Live Action Short goes to "Helium." After that, Best Documentary Short goes to "The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life."

9:36 - Ellen decides to order pizza, because she's very hungry. She then introduced lottery scratcher ticket winner Bradley Cooper. He's presenting Best Documentary to "20 Feet From Stardom." One of the recipients, Darlene Love, sings a song. Why doesn't this happen more often? Enough thanking agents, let's get some karaoke going.

9:41 - Next we get Kevin Spacey, who gives us a bit of Frank Underwood before starting his bit. He's out to recap the Governors Awards.

9:49 - Ewan McGregor and Viola Davis next present Best Foreign Film to "The Great Beauty" from Italy. Next out is Tyler Perry to talk about "Nebraska," "Her" and Gravity, more Best Picture nominees. Amy Adams was not all that interested in what he had to say, based on her not paying much attention.

9:54 - Ellen's back and she's dressed in all white, which earns her some shouts from the crowd. She brings Brad Pitt out to introduce U2. They're performing "Ordinary Love." They kill their unplugged performance and get a standing ovation. There's only one performance left and it's going to be huge. We're waiting for you, Idina.

10:02 - We're back and ... Ellen's taking more selfies. This time she's involving stars in the crowd. She takes one with all the stars in the world in an effort to get the most retweets ever and it works, even if it breaks Twitter. Next up is Michael B. Jordan and Kristen Bell (or Kristen B. Ell). They're talking about the technical Oscars.

10:06 - Chris Hemsworth and Charlize Theron flub their lines and award Best Sound Mixing to "Gravity." They also present Best Sound Editing to "Gravity."

10:11 - Christoph Waltz is presenting Best Supporting Actress. This is a very tough category, with so many great performances. Lupita Nyong'O takes the win for "12 Years a Slave" and the crowd goes wild. Even Liza Minnelli gets a hug for some reason. This is the most alive the crowd's been all night. She thanks everyone, everywhere with tears in her eyes. "When I look down at this golden statue, may it remind me and every child that no matter where you come from, you're dreams are valid." Pretty much the entire audience is crying.

10:21 - What better way to follow that win than with pizza. Ellen and the delivery guy go into the crowd with three pizzas and lots of paper plates. It took less than a minute for Jennifer Lawrence to be through half a piece, because she's awesome. Meanwhile, Jared Leto gave a piece to his mom. Ellen asks Harvey Weinstein to tip the delivery guy.

Now the Academy president is out here to talk about the good work they do in the world, the upcoming museum they're opening, how many tickets were sold. Killing time?

"Good luck following that, Amy Adams and Bill Murray," Ellen jokes. Guess who's out next.

10:26 - Murray keeps calling Adams "baby" and it's the best. They're presenting Best Cinematography to "Gravity." But not before a very nice shout out to the late Harold Ramis.

10:29 - Next, Anna Kendrick and Gabourey Sidibe are out to award Best Editing. "Gravity" wins yet again. It's really cleaning up all the technical awards, which should come as no surprise.

10:32 - Whoopi Goldberg takes the stage in ruby slippers to introduce the "Wizard of Oz" tribute. Pink's fantastic "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" just makes it an even better music night ... and she didn't even have to fly for it.

10:42 - Back from commercial, Ellen struts onto stage dressed as Glinda the Good Witch, before realizing she's too late for the "Wizard of Oz" segment. Instead, she introduced Benedict Cumberbatch and Jennifer Garner, who are awarding Best Production Design.

"The Great Gatsby" takes the award. That's two Oscars for "Gatsby."

10:46 - Captain America is finally here to save the day! Oh, it's just Chris Evans introducing the superhero video package. The first thing they show is "Man of Steel," which is a horrible thing to do. It's not just superheroes, it's all matter of iconic figures. From "Back to the Future" to "Ghostbusters" to "The Hunger Games," almost every awesome movie is represented. There's just so many movie heroes. Even "Harry Potter" gets his due.

10:53 - Glenn Close is out for introduce the In Memoriam segment. That is immediately followed by a performance "Wind Beneath My Wings" from Bette Midler.

11:05 - Goldie Hawn appears to introduce the rest of the Best Picture nominees, "Philomena," "Captain Phillips" and "12 Years a Slave."

11:08 - Time for Idina! Unfortunately, John Travolta doesn't know how to pronounce her name, so he speaks gibberish instead. It doesn't matter, she's blowing everyone else out of the water.

11:13 - Jessica Biel tries to present Best Original Score, while Jamie Foxx tries to do anything but. He's singing to himself or something. "Gravity" wins, even though it's a mostly quiet movie. That seems logical!

Now it's time for Best Original Song. This is really a battle between U2 and Idina. And "Let It Go" wins! Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez gave the most fun speech of the night, which even included asking for "Frozen 2." Get to work on that, Disney. The entire thing even rhymed, so cool.

11:23 - Ellen is collecting donations from the audience to pay for the pizza in Pharrell's hat, so there's that. Then Robert De Niro and Penelope Cruz are out for Best Adapted Screenplay. "!2 Years a Slave" takes that one.

Next, "Her" wins for Best Original Screenplay. It's the first ever Oscar for Spike Jonze, which is pretty awesome.

11:32 - Angelina Jolie and Sydney Poitier are presenting Best Director, but not before Jolie tells Poitier just how important he is to the film world. He won his first Oscar in 1963. Alfonso Cuaron wins for "Gravity," of course. Chances are this will be the last trophy for the movie tonight. Though he got cut off during Best Editing, now he's got his chance to speak. "Sandra Bullock, Sandy, you're 'Gravity'."

11:41 - It's time for Best Actress, care of Daniel Day Lewis. Cate Blanchett gets the win for "Blue Jasmine." She tells Judi Dench to "suck it." She's lucky Dame Judy isn't there! She thanks Woody, which gets a slightly delayed applause, though not a very big one.

11:48 - Jennifer Lawrence takes the stage for Best Actor. She immediately asks why someone is laughing at her.

Just as everyone, everywhere, for all of time predicted: Matthew McConaughey wins. Unlike his other speeches, no "Alright, alright, alright" at the beginning. He talks about God, his late father, his mom, the wife, the kids and everyone who has helped him on this journey. Finally, there's his hero. "It's me in 10 years." He's constantly chasing the man he wants to be ten years down the line. He ends with the alrights and a "Just keep livin." Cause he had to.

11:55 - Will Smith is bringing us home with the Best Picture award. We'll get out of this only a half hour late.

"12 Years a Slave" takes the big win! Brad Pitt is accepting the award. He quickly hands it over to Steve McQueen, though. He hits all the notes he would have with a Best Director win and the crowd is loving it. "I dedicate this award to all the people who have endured slavery and the 21 million people who still suffer in slavery today."

That's a wrap, folks. Ellen quickly says goodnight at 12:00 am ET exactly.
Photo/Video credit: ABC