Bill Nighy stole the show at the 2023 Oscars when he pulled out a Sylvanian family rabbit from his pocket and posed with it for the cameras.
Awards season is known for magnifying the public personas of its participants and the 2023 Oscars were no exception. While some attendees, like Ke Huy Quan and Hugh Grant, made a lasting impression, Bill Nighy also stole the show with his understated yet memorable moment on the champagne carpet, reported The Guardian. Nighy—who was nominated for best actor for his role in "Living," which was overshadowed by more flashy performances—managed to capture the spotlight with a small act of virality. As he posed for the cameras, he pulled a stained Sylvanian Family rabbit out of his pocket and showed it to the world.
why does bill nighy have a sylvanian bunny with him pic.twitter.com/oatoxOqN2C— karen han (@karenyhan) March 12, 2023
It was so quintessentially Nighy—restrained, tasteful and slightly sinister. The star also left the mysterious rabbit unexplained, adding to its intrigue. While many celebrities use the carpet to make political statements, Nighy's act was more of a puzzle. Some speculated that it was a statement about endangered species, while others thought it might be a nod to the LGBTQ+ community. But the truth turned out to be much simpler.
According to The Guardian, in a statement to Metro, Nighy explained that he was rabbit-sitting for his granddaughter, who had a busy schedule. "I wasn't prepared to leave her unattended in a hotel room," he said. "The stakes are too high. Where I go, she goes..."
The internet was dying to know why actor Bill Nighy brought a Sylvanian Family bunny to the Oscars. Turns out he was given a very important job!— The Project (@theprojecttv) March 13, 2023
READ MORE: https://t.co/TXHBsHwlH6#TheProjectTV pic.twitter.com/zpwnAfOv7g
It was a sweet and relatable explanation. But it still left some unanswered questions. What sauce was the rabbit covered in? And which member of the Babblebrook family was it? These details may seem trivial, but they speak to the power of Nighy's moment on the red carpet. A small act of grandparenting became a viral sensation, reminding us that even in the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, family is a vital part of who you are.
Nighy's blue ribbon for refugees also spoke to the power of the red carpet as a platform for highlighting social and political issues. While some criticized him for trying to raise awareness for two separate causes, it's worth noting that Nighy's rabbit moment was not a deliberate statement. It was a personal gesture that took on a life of its own. And in a way, that's what makes it so powerful.
In a world where celebrities are constantly bombarding us with their opinions and causes, it is refreshing to see a small act of kindness take center stage. Nighy's rabbit may not have saved the pygmy rabbit from extinction, but it reminded us that there are more important things in life than awards and fame. In the end, that is what makes Nighy a true star.