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Michael Shannon Watched ‘The Shape of Water’ Win Best Picture at a Chicago Pub

He didn't hear director Guillermo del Toro's speech, though: the bar's TV only had closed captions.

Michael Shannon attends the world premiere of "Waco" at Jazz at Lincoln Center, in New YorkWorld Premiere of "Waco", New York, USA - 22 Jan 2018

Michael Shannon attends the world premiere of “Waco” in January 2018

Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/REX/Shutterstock

When “The Shape of Water” was named Best Picture at Sunday’s Academy Awards, Sally Hawkins, Doug Jones, Octavia Spencer, Richard Jenkins, and Michael Stuhlbarg followed their director, Guillermo del Toro, onstage (watch below). Absent was their co-star Michael Shannon, who many thought deserved his third chance at Best Supporting Actor for playing the villain in this year’s most-nominated film. But Shannon wasn’t home sulking over his lack of a nod — his art kept him more than a thousand miles from Hollywood.

Oscar night coincided with the final performance of Brett Neveu’s “Traitor” at Chicago’s A Red Orchid Theatre, where the play ran for seven weeks. Shannon directed the production, for the theater company he co-founded in his late teens. Afterward, he went around the corner to The Old Town Ale House, a bar bedecked in portraits of nude politicians and favored by the ensembles of nearby Second City and the Steppenwolf Theatre Company (Shannon is a Steppenwolf veteran). There — according to a tweet from Old Town Ale House owner Bruce Elliott — Shannon caught the end of the Jimmy Kimmel-hosted telecast, on mute.

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