Despite that final moment epic Oscars flub, New Jersey native Damien Chazelle did win an Academy Award for La La Land and broke a record in the process. The 32-year-old who grew up in Mercer County is the youngest to clinch best director. He breaks a streak that dates back more than 80 years!

Chazelle's proud parents are both professors in NJ. Bernard Chazelle teaches at Princeton and Celia Chazelle teaches at TCNJ. They were on-hand to watch their son make Hollywood history, as the director thanked them and his sister from the stage.

Another ‘piece’ of NJ from the film was there, too. A star projector (originally from the Planetarium at Ocean County College) used in the modern musical was used at the awards show during John Legend‘s performance of two songs from La La Land. One of them, 'City of Stars,' then won the Oscar for Best Original Song.

La La Land wound up with six Oscars in all, for best director, actress, production design, cinematography, score and original song.

Damien Chazelle La La Land Oscars 2017
'La La Land' director, NJ's Damien Chazelle breaks an Oscars record - The NJ Breakroom (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Of course, the luster of those accomplishments was tarnished by the mistaken Best Picture announcement. But let's hope Chazelle is able to regain some perspective, once the initial firestorm dies down.


Proud Jersey Girl Erin Vogt’s first reporting gig involved her Fisher Price tape recorder. As a wife and momma of two kiddies, she firmly believes that life’s too short to drink bad coffee.  A fan of the beach, Dave Grohl and karma, in no particular order.

Follow her on Twitter and on Facebook as ProudJersey.

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