Halle Berry and Penelope Cruz accepting their Oscars
Photos: Getty
Halle: How does it feel being nominated being back -o-back? Last year you won and that was amazing for you, I can imagine.

Penelope: My main fear was to not have a panic attack and not faint because I thought I was this close to stepping into the other side.

Halle: I stepped into the other side. I don't even remember getting up. I don't even remember really standing there. I remember Russell Crowe saying: "Breathe, mate. You've got to breathe, mate." I didn't write anything; it sort of was just pouring out of me.
Penelope: You didn't write anything?

Halle: I didn't write a speech—I really didn't think I was going to go up there. I thought, "This has been a nice ride and lots of good recognition," but the Oscar just seemed unobtainable for me. So no, I didn't write anything, to my regret.

Penelope: No, but it was amazing. It was so from your heart, it was beautiful. … When I saw you in that movie I was screaming. I was happy that such an amazing actress like you had found that role to express yourself that way, because it is mind-blowing what do in that movie. … When I saw that scene [on the sofa], I was so blown away by how great you were. And I don't mean about showing your body; I could see that woman's soul.

Halle: People often say that must have been hard, but it wasn't me up there. I totally had surrendered to that character. I knew one boob was going this way, one was going that way and I just totally didn't connect to that part of my physical self at all. Me as a person got to evaporate and just emerge through someone else that's the best feeling and the most joy I ever have on a movie set. So thank you.

Penelope: That's a great way to explain it. And when that happens for me, that's true happiness. I look for that connection. I look for that experience that is a high. You fly. It's so hard to find.

Halle: Did you fly in Nine? Because I thought you flew, I thought you were sexy from the inside out.

Penelope: Thank you, Halle.