LOS ANGELES – "Slumdog Millionaire" is the Academy Awards champion, wrapping up its ghetto-to-glory story by winning best picture and seven other Oscars, including the directing honor for Danny Boyle.
A story of hope amid squalor in Mumbai, India, "Slumdog Millionaire" also had wins that include adapted screenplay, cinematography, editing and both music Oscars, score and song.
Director Boyle offered warm gratitude to the people of Mumbai, saying they "dwarf even this guy" as he held up his Oscar statue.
The other top winners: Kate Winslet, best actress for the Holocaust-themed drama "The Reader"; Sean Penn, best actor for the title role of "Milk"; Heath Ledger, supporting actor for "The Dark Knight"; and Penelope Cruz, supporting actress for "Vicky Cristina Barcelona."
Penn's first words upon taking the stage to accept his prize for playing the slain gay-rights pioneer were: "You commie, homo-loving sons of guns."
Kate Winslet, meantime, has taken best actress for the Holocaust-themed saga "The Reader," while best-picture favorite "Slumdog Millionaire" has cruised to seven Oscars, including best director for Danny Boyle.
Heath Ledger is the supporting-actor winner for his demented reinvention of Batman villain the Joker in "The Dark Knight," becoming only the second actor ever to win an Oscar posthumously.
The supporting-actress trophy has gone to Penelope Cruz as a tempestuous artist in Woody Allen's Spanish romance "Vicky Cristina Barcelona.
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