Oscars History: David Niven interrupted by streaker (Video)
Throughout this Oscar season, we are looking back at some of the great moments in Academy Awards history. At the 46th Oscars in 1974, actor David Niven was interrupted when introducing Elizabeth Taylor, who was set to present the Oscar for "Best Picture," when a streaker ran across the stage.
The audience erupted into roaring laughter while Niven remained un-phased. The British actor deadpanned, "Well, ladies and gentlemen, that was almost bound to happen. But isn't it fascinating to think that probably the only laugh that man will ever get in his life is by stripping off and showing his shortcomings?"
The 46th Oscar ceremony was presided over by John Huston, Diana Ross, Burt Reynolds and David Niven.
Niven, who is best known for portraying Phileas Fogg in "Around the World in 80 Days," won the 1958 Academy Award for "Best Actor" for his role in "Separate Tables."
The streaker, Robert Opel, was a photographer and art gallery owner who snuck backstage after posing as a journalist, since he was once employed by The Advocate.
In 1978, Opel opened an art gallery in San Francisco devoted to gay male art called Fey-Way Studios, which brought fame to artists like Tom of Finland and Robert Mapplethorpe. He was murdered in 1979 during a robbery of the studio.
Elizabeth Taylor eventually presented the "Best Picture" Academy Award to "The Sting," which was directed by George Roy Hill and starred Paul Newman and Robert Redford as two professional grifters.
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The awards ceremony will air live on Sunday, February 24, 2013 on ABC, OTRC.com's parent company.