The Hunger Games alum, 49, ran to take the stage on Sunday, March 12, at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles. As she made her way to the microphone, Banks stumbled over the long train of her floor-length black and white gown.
Luckily, she did not fall and was able to recover from the moment gracefully. After she cleared the stage, a person in a bear costume followed her and accompanied the Pitch Perfect actress to present the trophy.
“Oh my God, he tripped me,” she quipped to the audience, blaming the animal for her stumble while also joking around that visual effects were a necessity in the film industry, especially for her new film, Cocaine Bear, which she directed. The thriller starred Keri Russell and the late Ray Liotta, who was honored in the In Memoriam segment later in the evening.
After kidding around, Banks began to read the names of the nominees in the category — Avatar: The Way of Water, All Quiet on the Western Front, The Batman, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and Top Gun: Maverick.
Avatar: The Way of Water took home the win but director James Cameron was not present for the ceremony. In Jimmy Kimmel’s opening monologue, the host, 55, called out Cameron, 68, for not attending the show for “personal reasons,” per Variety.
“You know, Tom [Cruise] and James Cameron didn’t show up tonight. The two guys who insisted we go to the theater didn’t come the theater,” Kimmel joked to the audience. “I mean, how does the Academy not nominate the guy who directed Avatar? What do they think he is, a woman?”
Cameron released the long-awaited Avatar sequel nearly 13 years after the original film’s release. The blockbuster brought back Zoe Saldaña and Sigourney Weaver — who were both in attendance at the awards show — along with Sam Worthington.
In addition to being nominated for Best Visual Effects, Avatar: The Way of Water also earned nods in the categories for Best Production Design, Best Sound and the most coveted award: Best Picture.
Avatar faces tough competition for Best Picture, as it is up against All Quiet on the Western Front, The Banshees of Inisherin, Elvis, Everything Everywhere All at Once, The Fabelmans, Tár, Top Gun: Maverick, Triangle of Sadness and Women Talking.