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Emma Stone wins best actress Oscar for playing an aspiring actress in 'La La Land'

Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling co-star as a couple falling in love in contemporary Los Angeles in the film 'La La Land.' Stone was nominated for best supporting actress for her role in 2014's 'Birdman.'

Emma Stone stars in 'La La Land.'
Dale Robinette/Lionsgate/AP/File | Caption

Emma Stone of “La La Land” has won the Oscar for best actress for her work portraying aspiring actress Mia in the acclaimed original movie musical.

This was Ms. Stone’s second Oscar nomination following her nod for best supporting actress for her appearance in the 2014 film “Birdman.” (She had previously showed off her song-and-dance skills in her appearance as Sally Bowles in the 2014 Broadway revival of “Cabaret.”) 

Stone's co-star Ryan Gosling portrays a jazz pianist who meets Mia. The two fall in love in contemporary Los Angeles.

“La La Land” tied the record set by films “Titanic” and “All About Eve” for the number of Oscar nominations received by one movie, with all three receiving 14. “La La Land” is also nominated best picture and director Damien Chazelle won the best director prize. 

Stone previously appeared in other movies with Mr. Gosling, including the 2011 romantic comedy “Crazy, Stupid, Love.” 

In an interview with Time Magazine, Stone said, "What [Mr. Chazelle] was going for was really exciting and enticing, because I love the originality of it and what it was paying homage to. It was really cool and interesting to be a part of, and, equally, scary – because if the tone wasn’t cohesive from the smaller scenes into these big cinemascope musical numbers, I didn’t know how it would turn out. But that’s also the most exciting thing – equal parts, ‘Who knows?’ and ‘Let's do it!’ ” 

Chazelle said the fact that Stone and Gosling had appeared onscreen together before intrigued him.

“I like that we had seen them before in a way that kind of made them feel like an old Hollywood pairing where William Powell and Myrna Loy would do those movies together; Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, obviously; Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy,” he said in an interview with Variety. “There would be these pairs that you would expect to see in cinema and you kind of felt that you knew them. I liked that because it gave us a starting point to begin to unravel it a little bit and maybe show new sides to it.”