Inside the more intimate Oscars of the weekend

The first four Oscars – honorary ones – over the weekend were presented Friday night at the Executive Awards Ceremony at the Ray Dolby Ballroom. Danny Glover, Samuel L. Jackson, Elaine May and Liv Ullmann was awarded a golden statuette at the Academy’s annual event, which has been postponed from its original date of January 15 due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The gala dinner is usually held during the peak of the awards campaign and sees many shortlisted candidates. But with this year’s event coming just two days before the Oscars and when the voting closes, it’s a smaller crowd — and still a night to honor and highlight the careers and work of human beings. The religion of four people was honored.

May showcased her signature improv comedy in her brief acceptance speech, revealing that Warren Beatty called her to convince her to attend the event and claim the prize. “He said, ‘Let’s go there. I’ll give you the prize “…and then he never calls me again,” she joked. In Bill MurrayIntroducing the iconic actress, director and screenwriter, he says she has “saved my life many times, professionally.”

The tone of the evening throughout the speeches was sweet and heartfelt, with montages highlighting each honoree’s most poignant work both on and off screen. a famous American actor introduced Jackson by listing not only his enormous success in the industry (“152 titles – I got IMDb pro – $27 billion in box office. More than any other actor in the franchise. history.”) but also a long list of the many organizations prolific actors have supported over the years.

“When I received this call last year, it was completely unexpected, but I assure you, it will be appreciated,” Jackson said, holding the Oscar statuette. The Avengers and Pulp FIction the star went on to joke about the “indelible impression” he made on the audience as “no gang member. 2” and “beggar”.

Jackson added, “I went there to entertain audiences the way Hollywood entertained me. Make them forget about their lives for a few hours – thrill, indulge or get excited in the big room where confident people live.”

Ullman, who was introduced to the stage by John Lithgow, shared much about her journey into acting, first as a star of minengmar Bergmanfilms by and also a director. She says she grew up with the Norwegian belief of “Don’t show off. That’s why I brought 20 people from Norway, so they could say to Norway, ‘It’s true! She received an Oscar! ”

Ullman revealed that she felt at the beginning of her career she was very focused on herself. “I feel a bit full of myself. I’m seeing me, but I don’t see the other person,” she said, but as she began to do humanitarian work with refugees, she became more open to the world.

The night’s final honoree, Glover, was awarded the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, highlighting the activism he has engaged in throughout his career. Alfred Woodard describe her Grand Canyon and Bopha! collaboratively building “community wherever he goes. He opens his light wherever a fellow traveler is in darkness. Danny Glover always does the right thing first without testing the prevailing winds of public opinion.”

Glover says he’s “extremely grateful for this moment, as he walks onto the stage. He improvised much of his speech because he said what he had written was mainly featured in the highlight reel that was played before he took the stage. Glover took the time to praise his collaborators (like Woodard) and nominees like Ullmann and Jackson, along with honoring his parents’ memory. He ended it with some reflections on his activism and the progress made. “I am proud to be a part of this place, this space – thank you, thank you, thank you,” he concluded his speech.

The entire event (including guests like Ava DuVernay, Magic Johnson, David Oyelowo, Quentin Tarantino, Rita Wilson and Alfred Molina) Feels like a sweet appetizer before Sunday’s main meal. As the academy president David Rubin in his opening remarks about the night’s special: “It’s more intimate, it’s private, it’s not televised… and most importantly, it embodies a spirit of generosity that isn’t always also in Hollywood.”

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