The HFPA’s recent trip to New York for a series of interviews was topped off by a visit from Woody Allen
, who is to receive the association’s Cecil B. De Mille Award for his outstanding contributions to the world of entertainment. The 77-year-old filmmaker was guest of honor at a reception held for him by the HFPA in New York’s London Hotel. He was joined by two co-stars from his Blue Jasmine movie, Sally Hawkins
, who flew in specially from London, and Bobby Canavale.
“I like the HFPA very much—they’re like family to me,” he said. “I always enjoy being with them.”
The veteran filmmaker is not expected at the awards ceremony on January 12, however, but the trophy will be accepted on his behalf by his longtime friend Diane Keaton
. Keaton and Allen met in 1968 when she auditioned and was cast in his Broadway play, Play It Again, Sam
. They were a couple for 5 years and she appeared in eight Allen films spanning two decades, winning a Golden Globe for 1976?s Annie Hall.
The actor-writer-director-producer-composer-musician is at an age when most filmmakers have long retired but he shows no signs of slowing down.
After a more than 60-year career he is, after 55 films, two Golden Globes wins and 11 nominations, more famous now than ever before, although the benefits of fame are something he confesses he has his doubts about.
“Fame has many drawbacks and many advantages and it’s close, but the advantages just outweigh the drawbacks,” he says. “Believe it or not, there are many terrible things about being famous and many wonderful things, too.” Photos: Armando Gallo
The announcement that Woody Allen is to receive the 2014 Cecil B DeMille Award was immediately echoed by media outlets around the globe.
On Friday, Sept 13, HFPA President Theo Kingma announced the unanimous decision by the association’s Board of Directors to honor the prolific veteran actor and director of 45 films with the highest award the international press organization presents at every Golden Globe Gala, the award named after the legendary Hollywood titan Cecil B. DeMille.
Minutes after the announcement the social media switched to turbo speed, responding overwhelmingly with positive and congratulatory comments, such as that from Yonne Moreno, University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, who wrote: “(The award goes to an) intelligent and educated author who was able to capture on screen different eras and the evolution of families”.
Praise also came from blogs such as Japan’s top entertainment site Eiga, Venezuela’s Capsula Cinefila, and the PanArmenian Net. The French journalist Marine Glissel expressed her excitement: “We can only wait with impatience. His acceptance speech promises to be brilliant“.
Traditional media around the globe followed: From the China Weekly to Peru’s Onda Cera Radio; from the Irish Examiner to Spain’s Antena 3 TV; and Radio Gong, Munich. Sweden’s papers picked up the headline circulated by the Swedish News Agency TT: Woody Allen får ta emot hederspris (W.A. receives honorary award) and the Hindustan Times added a quote by Woody Allen: “I don’t think of a joke and then say it. I say it and than realize what I’ve said. And I laugh at it, because I’m hearing it for the first time myself“.
Many media commentators mentioned Woody Allen’s well-known reluctance to appear at award shows, be it the Oscars or the Golden Globes. The German weekly Der Stern was among many speculating whether the honoree will show up at the Golden Globes Gala on January 12, 2014 at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills: “The announcement excited movie buffs around the world. But he dislikes appearances at award shows.” There was a similar response from the Italian Corriere della Sera: “At this point everyone is asking: Will he personally be there to receive the statue? But the possible absence of Allen does not discourage the organizers of the Globes”.
There is reason for optimism. At many occasions, mostly during location visits of Allen’s films by HFPA delegations, Woody Allen stated: “I really like the Hollywood Foreign Press“.
by Jack Tewksbury
For forty years the HFPA has recorded interviews with famous and celebrated actors, actresses and filmmakers. The world’s largest collection of its kind — over 10,000 interviews — is now in the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences Library. The audios are fascinating. Below is an excerpt: Dianne Keaton talking out overcoming shyness, the Annie Hall look and her relationship with fashion.
“In high school they voted me the Shyest Girl In School. I was so timid I didn’t go up to get the flowers. I’m not as shy and insecure as I once was. I’ve changed. You have to change, otherwise you just get more walled off, more protective, less able to get out and face the world. Sometimes you’ve just got to go out there.
Like everyone else, I worry if I do too much, or that I’m not fulfilling myself, or that I didn’t do enough. Or that I’m going to die or lose all my friend or I’m going to miss my family. These are ordinary fears everyone has, and I’m filled with them.
I go to bed at night so wound up by fear that I’m going to die or I’m going to lose a loved one. It’s overwhelming. But, basically, the next morning I get up, drink a cup of coffee, and boom!
The truth is I never originated (the Annie Hall) look. When I did Annie Hall there were people in the streets looking just like her. I had not created anything. People actually dressed like that. I wasn’t anything like Madonna. It was a cultural thing, but it wasn’t a phenomenon.
I’ve always been very clothes conscious, but I don’t think I’m qualified to establish a line. A lot of famous people have tried that but, frankly, you’ve got to know what you’re doing.I’m good at selecting clothes, but there’s a big difference between buying what you like and making up the idea. I’m not everyone’s taste. I said to a nasty friend, “Whenever I’m down in the dumps I buy a dress.” She replied, “I wondered where you got them.”
Remember when the style for women was the use of padding in everything? Women had wider shoulders than body-builders. When they came down the street they were scarey. They didn’t take off their clothes. They unpacked.”
Instead of promoting herself, two-time Golden Globe winner Diane Keaton (Annie Hall, Something’s Gotta Give) deflected all the light and attention to her four-legged companion when she met HFPA members at the Four Seasons to discuss her latest movie, Darling Companion.
“I am in love with my dog. Her name is Emmie, and she’s a cover girl! See?” The actress proudly showed off the cover of the AARP magazine which features her and Emmie. “The love that I feel for this dog – and any other dog that I have had – is unlike any love that I experienced … talk about unconditional. And they don’t talk back!.”
In Darling Companion the actress plays a woman who finds the love, devotion, commitment and courage she needs all wrapped up in a bloodied stray dog who becomes her “darling companion.”