You might have thought our 93rd Annual Academy Awards VIP could rest after his preshow gig wrapped earlier this evening, but Sunday’s Oscars wasn’t done with Lil Rel Howery. The Bad Trip actor returned to present a truly wild round of Best Original Song trivia, which started with Andra Day getting bleeped out and ended with Glenn Close dancing to E.U.’s “Da Butt.”
When Day guessed Prince’s “Purple Rain” had never been nominated (the song itself didn’t get the nom, but Purple Rain’s soundtrack won for Best Original Score), she zinged the Academy for the slight, calling it “bullshit,” though the network was able to bleep her in time. “I don’t know how much that’s going to cost you, ABC, but it happened,” joked Howery. “We’re in a train station; you don’t know what you’re going to hear.”
“I stole a car from my job, picked you up in the woods, and we drove off,” Howery reminisced with his next victim Daniel Kaluuya (but seriously, what happened that night they hung out at a sports bar?!). When the Best Supporting Actor winner whiffed his trivia question about Best Original Song winner Donna Summer’s “Last Dance,” Rel quipped, “You’re in the sunken place again, man.”
However, when Howery quizzed Glenn Close on the Academy Award history of “Da Butt,” she conveniently not only knew the song, but proceeded to get up and throw it in a circle to said song in a moment of pure Oscars chaos. “It’s both dope and uncomfortable,” said Howery. Thank you, Lil Rel, for this moment. Thank you, Glenn, and most of all, thank you, “Da Butt.”
Update, April 26: The Los Angeles Times reported that Close’s dancing was indeed a scripted bit, crushing our fantasy that the film legend just knows the “Da Butt” dance. On the bright side, if this year’s Oscars were a movie and Close’s part was scripted, does that mean she’s eligible for another Best Supporting Actress nod next year?
Update, April 27: Glenn Close has butted in to clear everything up. “I knew that Lil Rel was going to quiz me about ‘Da Butt,’” she wrote on an Instagram post, adding that her tablemates Daniel Kaluuya, Darrell Britt-Gibson, and Chris Terrio helped teach her about the song. “I had Googled ‘Da Butt’ and watched Spike’s music video so when Lil Rel asked if I could do the dance … you can actually see me think of the video,” Close continued. “That part was completely spontaneous. Daniel, Darrell, and Chris egged me on!!! It was ALL their fault.” Sure, Glenn.