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Stony Brook grad Mark Bridges wins Oscar Jet Ski contest for shortest acceptance speech

Helen Mirren and Mark Bridges, the winner of

Helen Mirren and Mark Bridges, the winner of the Jet Ski and costume design Oscar, close out the 90th annual Academy Awards telecast on March 4, 2018, in Hollywood. Credit: AFP/Getty Images / Mark Ralston

In addition to the Academy Award and the Kawasaki Jet Ski that costume designer Mark Bridges won Sunday at the Oscars, he also earned a shout-out from his alma mater: Stony Brook University, where the Niagara Falls, New York, native studied for his bachelor of arts degree in theater arts.

“He did it! Alumnus Mark Bridges ’83 just earned his second Oscar! Congratulations!!” tweeted the college’s alumni association after he won for his work on “Phantom Thread.” Bridges, who went on to a master of fine arts degree in costume design at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, previously received an Academy Award for “The Artist” (2011) plus a nomination for “Inherent Vice” (2014).

Most of the attention for Bridges on Sunday, however, centered on his winning the 2018 Kawasaki Ultra 310LX Jet Ski that host Jimmy Kimmel said the Academy would bestow upon the person with the night’s shortest acceptance speech. Bridges’ speech clocked in at 30 seconds.

“That was an accident!” Bridges told “Entertainment Tonight” after the telecast. “I really had things to say. I forgot a sentence and now look: I’ve got me and Helen Mirren on a Jet Ski,” referring to him and the celebrated actress riding it as it was towed onto the stage at the end of the show.

He added, “When they came and got me out of the audience and they said, ‘Could you come to the green room?’ I was like, ‘Oh, no, I got the Jet Ski.’ ” He explained the reason for his trepidation after being asked if he had ever been on a Jet Ski.

“Not that was a good experience, no,” he said. “So maybe my luck will turn around now.”

Kawasaki USA tracked the Oscar proceedings closely, tweeting early on, “Who will win the ‘biggest’ award of the night?” An hour-and-a-quarter later, the company tweeted, “Currently #MarkBridges is in the #Oscars #JetSki lead at 0:36. Will he ride to victory?” Kawasaki later posted, “Celebration is 2X as good on a #JetSki. Congratulations #MarkBridges for winning Best Costume Design and the biggest, fastest award of the night!”

And if he doesn’t care to keep the vehicle, there’s always his brother, Michael Bridges, who wrote on Facebook, “An Oscar and a jet ski! Congratulations brother! So glad it has two seats!”

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