Brendan Fraser's Tearful Oscars Speech a Nod to Career Lows — Read in Full

Brendan Fraser gave a moving speech as he accepted the award for best actor at the 95th Oscars on Sunday evening.

The star, 54, took home the coveted prize for his lead role in director Darren Aronofsky's psychological drama The Whale.

The Mummy star Fraser had already won several awards for playing a morbidly obese and reclusive English professor, named Charlie, in the run-up to the 2023 Academy Awards, which were hosted by Jimmy Kimmel.

He then beat his fellow Oscar nominees Austin Butler, Colin Farrell, Bill Nighy and Paul Mescal when he was named as the winner of the best actor trophy by presenters Halle Berry and Jessica Chastain.

Brendan Fraser 2023 Oscars speech
Brendan Fraser accepting the Best Actor award for "The Whale" onstage during the 95th Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on March 12, 2023 in Hollywood, California. Fraser plays a morbidly obese man named Charlie in the drama. Kevin Winter/Getty Images

While on stage to accept his award, Fraser gave an emotional address to the audience, in which he reflected on the highs and lows of his career in the film industry.

Newsweek has the actor's full speech below.

Brendan Fraser's 2023 Oscars Speech

After his name was called as the winner, Fraser was seen embracing his partner, Jeanne Moore.

He then made his way to the stage and already looked emotional before he even started talking.

Brendan Fraser and Jeanne Moore at Oscars
Brendan Fraser embraced girlfriend Jeanne Moore before heading on stage to accept the Best Actor award during the 95th Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on March 12, 2023 in Hollywood, California. He later thanked his partner in his speech. Kevin Winter/Getty Images

"So this is what the multi-verse looks like! My goodness," Fraser said as he began his speech to the audience at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.

"I want to thank the Academy for this honor, and our studio, A24, for making such a bold film. I'm grateful to Darren Aronofsky for throwing me a creative lifeline, and hauling me aboard the good ship, The Whale, which was written by Samuel D. Hunter, who is our lighthouse," Fraser continued.

The actor went on to thank his fellow nominees; Butler, Farrell, Nighy, and Mescal, saying: "Gentlemen, you laid your whale-sized hearts bare so that we could see into your souls, like no-one else could do, and it is my honor to be named alongside you in this category."

"Only whales can swim at the depth of the talent of Hong Chau," Fraser added, referencing his The Whale co-star, and fellow Oscar-nominee.

Fraser also reflected on his long career in the movie industry, saying: "When I started in this business 30 years ago, things didn't come easily to me. But there was a facility that I didn't appreciate at the time — until it stopped.

"I just want to say thank you for this acknowledgement, because it couldn't be done without my cast. It's been like I've been on a diving expedition on the bottom of the ocean and the air on the line to the surface is on a launch, being watched over by some people in my life. Like my sons; Holden and Leden, and Griffin. I love you Griffie."

Fraser went on to thank his manager and his girlfriend, who he described as his "best first mate."

The actor concluded his speech by saying: "Thank you, again, to each one and all, I'm so grateful to you. Goodnight."

Brendan Fraser and sons on red carpet
Pictured (L-R) Leland Fraser, Brendan Fraser, and Holden Fraser at the 2023 Vanity Fair Oscar Party on March 12, 2023 in Beverly Hills, California. Brendan Fraser thanked Lelan, Holden, and his other son, Griffin, in his speech at the 95th Oscars. Cindy Ord/VF23/Getty Images for Vanity Fair

Fraser's role in The Whale has won him many awards, including a Critics Choice trophy, but the movie's success hasn't come without controversy as some critics and body image advocates have slammed the movie for its use of a fat suit, with many arguing the role should have gone to an obese actor.

The George of the Jungle star has responded to the controversy himself and told Newsweek in October 2022: "I'm not a small man. And I don't know what the metric is to qualify to play the role. I only know that I had to give as honest a performance as I can."

While Fraser's win was one of the most-talked about moments of the Oscars, the movie Everything, Everywhere, All at Once also enjoyed a hugely successful night and took home seven awards, making it the most-awarded Best Picture since Slumdog Millionaire.

The film, directed by Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, took home Academy Awards for Best Bicture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best Actress, for Michelle Yeoh, Best Supporting Actress, for Jamie Lee Curtis, Best Supporting Actor, for Ke Huy Quan, and Best Editing.

Brendan Fraser in Aronofsky's "The Whale"
Brendan Fraser plays a 600-pound widower named Charlie in Darren Aronofsky's film "The Whale." The filmmaker's use of prosthetics to make Fraser appear larger has sparked debate online. A24