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Everything Everywhere wins best picture at the Oscars

Everything Everywhere All at Once has won the coveted best picture trophy at the 95th Academy Awards as Hollywood embraced an off-kilter story about a Chinese-American family working out their problems across multiple dimensions.

The movie claimed seven awards overall, including three of the four acting Oscars for stars Michelle Yeoh, Ke Huy Quan and Jamie Lee Curtis. Yeoh, the first Asian woman to win best actress, played the lead role of a stressed-out laundromat owner who finds she has superpowers in alternative universes.

"For all the little boys and girls who look like me watching tonight, this is a beacon of hope and possibilities," the 60-year-old Malaysian actress said on stage. "And ladies, don't let anybody ever tell you you are ever past your prime."

Yeoh defeated Cate Blanchett, who was nominated for her role in Tar, in what was a rough Sunday night for Australian nominees at the Dolby Theatre.

Among them was Catherine Martin, who lost in three categories - best costume design, production design and best picture - for her husband Baz Luhrmann's Elvis. The biopic also missed out on best cinematography for fellow Aussie Mandy Walker. Luhrmann wasn't among the best director nominees.

Elsewhere, Brisbane-based animator Lachlan Pendragon lost in the animated short film category.

Everything Everywhere was an improbable winner as a film that strayed far from traditional storytelling to spin a kung fu adventure about a family at odds.

Quan, a one-time child star who gave up acting for two decades, won best supporting actor for his portrayal of Yeoh's disgruntled husband in a family grappling with a tax audit that threatens their business.

A weeping Quan, who was born in Vietnam, told the audience: "My journey started on a boat. I spent a year in a refugee camp. Somehow I ended up here on Hollywood's biggest stage."

As a boy, Quan starred in a 1984 Indiana Jones movie and The Goonies in 1985. The 51-year-old said he had quit acting for years because he saw little opportunity for Asian actors on the big screen.

"They say stories like this only happen in the movies," he said. "I cannot believe it's happening to me. This is the American dream."

Curtis, who built a career in horror films such as Halloween, won best supporting actress for playing a frumpy tax agent named Deirdre Beaubeirdre.

The 64-year-old looked upward and addressed her late parents, Academy award nominees Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh. "I just won an Oscar," she said through tears.

The Whale star Brendan Fraser, known for 1990s roles such as The Mummy and Encino Man, won best actor for playing a severely obese man trying to reconnect with his daughter.

A German remake of World War I epic All Quiet on the Western Front was named best international feature. It won four Oscars, second highest after Everything Everywhere.

Navalny, about the poisoning that nearly killed Alexei Navalny, Russia's most prominent opposition leader, and his detention since his 2021 return to Moscow, won the Oscar for best feature documentary.

Naatu Naatu, a song from the Indian movie RRR that created a viral dance sensation, was honoured as best original song.

A24, which released Everything Everywhere and The Whale, claimed nine awards, more than any other studio.

A crisis response team was on hand in case of an unexpected twist. The group was formed after Will Smith smacked Chris Rock on stage last year, tarnishing the film industry's most prestigious ceremony.

At the start of the show, two US military aircraft flew over the Oscars theatre, and host Jimmy Kimmel landed on the stage by parachute, in a tribute to best picture nominee Top Gun: Maverick.

Comedian Kimmel joked in his opening monologue about the audience reaction to Smith's attack last year.

"If anything unpredictable or violent happens at the ceremony, just do what you did last year - nothing," he told the crowd of A-listers. "Maybe give the assailant a hug."

Guillermo del Toro's Pinocchio was named best animated feature.

The ceremony was broadcast on the US ABC network. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences hoped to move past the slap and stage a glitzy show and boost sagging TV ratings.

Reuters with AAP