McDormand's character in the movie Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri would most likely have punched Terry Bryant in the face after he appeared on camera at the Governor's Ball holding her Oscar and claiming to have won it himself.
Bryant, 47, appeared in court on Wednesday, March 7, accused of grand theft but his rabbi, Naomi Levy, told Judge Deborah Brazil he was a "sweet, gentle man of faith".
"We are living in an unusual time in America. I believe that maybe perhaps his story is a commentary on our whole society and its obsession with its 15 minutes of fame," added Rabbi Levy.
Terry Bryant, forever known as one of the stupidest people ever for stealing Frances McDormamd's Oscar and posting on Facebook that he won it. pic.twitter.com/gCWUzkzVPf— Andrew Jerell Jones (@sluggahjells) 5 March 2018
But prosecutor Rena Durant told the court that "sweet, gentle man of fath" had an impressive rap sheet — 13 convictions, mostly for theft, between 1994 and 2012.
"There's a difference between holding an Oscar and what he is charged with, so that will play out in court," said Bryant's attorney, Daniel Brookman, apparently laying the ground for a defense of "it was just a prank" at his client's eventual trial.
McDormand plays a feisty divorcee and gift shop owner, Mildred Hayes, who causes havoc in a small town while seeking justice for her murdered daughter.
She pipped Sally Hawkins and Meryl Streep to win the award 21 years after she won it for playing Marge Gunderson, a shrewd, kooky and heavily pregnant Minnesota detective in Fargo.
It appears that at some stage during the glitzy Ball hosted by the Governor of California, Jerry Brown, McDormand put the statuette down and Bryant, wearing a tuxedo, walked off with it.
He was later seen in clips holding up the Oscar proudly saying: "This is mine. We got it tonight, baby."
Bryant, who claims to be an aspiring journalist, was arrested nearby as he left the building with the statuette.
Thanks to a photographer who not only has a sharp eye for pics, but also for thievery, Terry Bryant was arrested for stealing an #Oscars trophy during last night's Governor's Ball pic.twitter.com/VhRnf9xbVl— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) 5 March 2018
Other video clips show him arriving at the Ball earlier and apparently pretending to be part of McDormand's entourage.
Her publicist said she was "happily reunited" with the award after Bryant was arrested and she celebrated with a double cheeseburger at a local branch of the In-N-Out Burger chain.
Bryant, who has been widely mocked on social media, was released on bail on Wednesday without having to pay a bond.
Ladies and gentlemen, Terry Bryant, the dude who Frances McDormand's Oscar, Facebook live-streamed to his friends that he'd won it for music, and was subsequently arrested. pic.twitter.com/WTK5LsdGWq— Omar Mouallem (@omar_aok) 6 March 2018
Los Angeles Police Department confirmed that Bryant had been given a ticket to attend the Governor's Ball.
He faces up to three years in jail if convicted of grand theft.