Moonlight and La La Land stole the night at the Oscars and Mahershala Ali was in the middle of all of the action. The actor took home his first Academy Award on Sunday just days after he and his wife, Amatus Sami-Karim, welcomed their FIRST CHILD, Bari Najma.

“I’m a special kind of tired right now,” Mahershala told Ryan Seacrest before the ceremony began. “It’s amazing, though,” Ali said of fatherhood. “I’m very grateful. It’s been a good time.”


The good times certainly rolled for the Moonlight actor as he won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor on Sunday. “I just want to thank my wife who was in her third trimester during awards season,” Mahershala said during his acceptance speech. “We just had a daughter four days ago. I just want to thank her for being such a soldier through this process and really carrying me through it all.”

Mahershala, his wife, and others experienced the shock of the night when Moonlight was announced as the Best Picture moments after the ceremony’s hosts, Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway, declared La La Land as the Academy’s choice.

“There’s a mistake,” La La Land producer Jordan Horowitz said several moments into the group’s acceptance speech. “‘Moonlight,’ you guys won Best Picture.” Barry Jenkins, Moonlight’s director, told attendees that the mix-up and ultimate win was nothing short of a fantasy.

“Very clearly, even in my dreams, this could not be true,” Jenkins said. “But to hell with dreams — I’m done with it because this is true.”

Bari Najma is Mahershala Ali and Amatus Sami-Karim’s first child.

Photo: Getty Images



Sarie is a writer and editor for BCK's Los Angeles division. She also shares stories on Medium that are meant to encourage thought and discussion. You can catch her outside enjoying nature and classical literature. Pop culture is pretty fun, too!

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