Cate Blanchett wins best actress Oscar for Blue Jasmine

Cate Blanchett In Blue Jasmine

Cate Blanchett scooped the best actress statuette at tonight's Academy Awards for her performance in the Woody Allen drama Blue Jasmine.

It is the Australian star's second Oscar. Blanchett previously won the best supporting actress prize after playing Katharine Hepburn in Martin Scorsese's film The Aviator.

Written and directed by Allen, Blue Jasmine stars Blanchett as a brittle Manhattan socialite who has fallen on hard times. The 44-year-old performer was the bookies' favourite to claim the Oscar, despite a recent repeat of accusations that director Allen had abused his infant daughter, Dylan. Blanchett's win ensures that she, at least, remains untainted by the controversy.

Thanking the Academy, she remonstrated with "those who think films with women at the centre are niche: they are not, people want to see them and they make money".

The 86th annual Academy Awards take place at the Dolby theatre in Los Angeles and are hosted by Ellen DeGeneres. Follow the events as they happen here.

Xan Brooks's liveblog of the ceremony
Full list of winners as they were announced

Powered by article was written by Xan Brooks, for on Monday 3rd March 2014 04.44 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010