Fans of the 'American Sniper' starring Bradley Cooper, criticized the Academy for awarding Birdman the Best Picture Oscar. (Photo: Studio)

Fans of the ‘American Sniper’ starring Bradley Cooper, criticized the Academy for awarding Birdman the Best Picture Oscar. (Photo: Studio)

“Birdman,” the offbeat Alejandro G. Iñárritu film, won Best Picture at the 87th Academy Awards today (Feb. 23) and immediately sparked a backlash on social media by fans of “American Sniper,” including ugly racial remarks.

The controversy also took on political overtones. Protesters were mostly conservative, pro-military types who were fanned by Fox News and Sean Hannity.

Protesters blamed everyone from President Obama to “liberal Hollywood” for what they saw as “American Sniper’s” snub.

“Real Americans had given the Oscar to American Sniper,” one irate supporter wrote on Twitter.

Iñárritu became the second Mexican filmmaker in a row to win the Best Director category, following Alfonso Cuarón last year. He won for the George Clooney, Sandra Bullock sci-fi film “Gravity.”

“This is crazy, talking about that little prick called ego. Ego loves competition, because for someone to win, someone has to lose. But the paradox is that true arts, true individual expressions …. can’t be compared, can’t be labeled, can’t be defeated, because they exist,” the director said accepting the award.

“Our work will only be judged, as always, by time. I am very thankful, grateful, humbly honored by the Academy for this incredible recognition,” he added.

Birdman, which starred Michael Keaton, Edward Norton and Emma Stone, is about a washed-up movie star who gained fame playing a superhero called “Birdman.”

He tries to revive his career by directing a Broadway play. But he gets lost in an existential maze involving his dysfunctional relationship with his daughter, his own inner demons and a clash of egos.

Critics were also irked that Iñárritu dedicated the Best Picture Oscar to his fellow Mexicans, “the ones who live in Mexico.”

Hannity has been trying to make hay out of Hollywood celebrities who criticized “American Sniper” for weeks. He Tweeted his disappointment after “Birdman” won Best Picture.

“AMERICAN Sniper snubbed by liberal hwood Predictable. #CluelessOscars,’ he wrote on Twitter.

“American Sniper,” directed by Clint Eastwood, is about Navy Seal Chris Kyle, who became the deadliest U.S. sniper to serve in Iraq. Bradley Cooper starred in the film and delivered a power-packed performance.

Kyle was shot and killed at a shooting range by a former marine suffering from post traumatic stress syndrome. Kyle was attempting to help him when he inexplicable gunned him down.

The movie focuses on Kyle’s inner struggle between his actions in Iraq and his effort to leave the war behind and return to his family in the United States. He ultimately served four tours in Iraq.

Eastwood tried to defuse the controversy leading up to the ceremony by saying his movie was not made to win awards.

Jason Bateman also drew the ire of “American Sniper” fans for apparently not clapping when the movie was announced.

“American Sniper” was, however, one of the biggest winners at the box office.

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Academy Award Winners for 2015 (Major Categories)

Best Picture

American Sniper
Clint Eastwood, Robert Lorenz, Andrew Lazar, Bradley Cooper and Peter Morgan

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Alejandro G. Iñárritu, John Lesher and James W. Skotchdopole

Richard Linklater and Cathleen Sutherland

The Grand Budapest Hotel
Wes Anderson, Scott Rudin, Steven Rales and Jeremy Dawson

The Imitation Game
Nora Grossman, Ido Ostrowsky and Teddy Schwarzman

Christian Colson, Oprah Winfrey, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner

The Theory of Everything
Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Lisa Bruce and Anthony McCarten

Jason Blum, Helen Estabrook and David Lancaster

Best Actor

Steve Carell

Bradley Cooper
American Sniper

Benedict Cumberbatch
The Imitation Game

Michael Keaton
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Eddie Redmayne

The Theory of Everything

Best Actress

Marion Cotillard
Two Days, One Night

Felicity Jones
The Theory of Everything

Julianne Moore

Still Alice

Rosamund Pike
Gone Girl

Reese Witherspoon

Best Supporting Actor

Robert Duvall
The Judge

Ethan Hawke

Edward Norton
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Mark Ruffalo

J.K. Simmons


Best Supporting Actress

Patricia Arquette


Laura Dern

Keira Knightley
The Imitation Game

Emma Stone
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Meryl Streep
Into the Woods

Best Director

Alejandro G. Iñárritu

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Richard Linklater

Bennett Miller

Wes Anderson
The Grand Budapest Hotel

Morten Tyldum
The Imitation Game