The 30 Seconds to Mars frontman and actor scored the victory at Sunday’s Oscars for his role in “Dallas Buyers Club.” He portrayed Rayon, a transgender woman who’s HIV-positive.
In his acceptance speech, Leto, long, flowing golden locks and all, thanked his mother, who he explained was a high school dropout and single mother that instilled in her children the drive “to be creative, to work hard and to do something special. I love you, mom. Thank you for teaching me to dream.” She was in the audience, along with Leto’s brother and 30 Seconds to Mars drummer Shannon.
Leto also reached out to “all the dreamers out there,” particularly in places like Ukraine and Venezuela, saying that “we are here and as you struggle to make your dreams happen, to live the impossible, we’re thinking of you tonight.”
Leto first surfaced nationwide as an actor, appearing in multiple films and TV shows starting in the ’90s, particularly on the show “My So-Called Life” as Jordan Catalano. He later transitioned into making music with rock band 30 Seconds to Mars, managing three No. 1 songs on the Alternative Songs chart over four albums — the most recent last year’s “Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams.”