WOODY MEETS HIS HFPA FAMILY

 woody reception  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 GalloWoody_4

NEWS OF WOODY ALLEN’S CECIL B.DE MILLE AWARD ECHOES AROUND THE GLOBE

Allen(2)

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“.

-—-Elmar Biebl

From the Archives: Diane Keaton

Diane Keatonby 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.”

DIANE KEATON TALKS OF HER ‘DARLING COMPANION’

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.”