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« The New Classics - Happy-Go-Lucky| Main| Best LGBT Movies?»
Tuesday
Jun 04 2019

Honorary Oscars to...亚博主页Davis,Lynch,Studi,and Wertmuller

by Nathaniel R

Just this weekend we loved you all anew forthat robust conversation about worthy Honorary Oscar recipients.News broke yesterday that the Board of Governors has named the four 2019 recipients.Honorary Oscars will go to the actor亚博主页Wes Studi(who many thought should have been nominated forLast of the Mohicansin 1992,his starmaking role),and two previously nominated directors,David Lynch(who we've been campaigning for) andLina Wertmüllerwho was famously the first woman ever nominated for the directing Oscar forher total masterpieceSeven Beauties.In addition to those three artists,the actressGeena Daviswill receive this year's Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award.That's a special subdivision of the Honorary that's not actually about the movies but your "outstanding contributions to humanitarian causes"...

You may recall that Geena already has an Oscar for her film career (The Accidental Tourist,1988) but the Jean Hersholt has different criteria and in this "Honorary"case,it actually helps to be a previous Oscar winner (though the Academy doesn't say so).Past examples of competitive acting winners who've then scored the Humanitarian Award include Angelina Jolie,Paul Newman,Liz Taylor,Audrey Hepburn,Charlton Heston,Frank Sinatra,and Gregory Peck.The list of famous actors who've won the Huminatarian Award without already being an Oscar winner is shorter: Rosalind Russell,Danny Kaye,Debbie Reynolds,and Charles 'Buddy' Rogers (ofWingsfame,the first Best Picture winner).

Geena Davis is a terrific choice for that honor given her advocacy and work with the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and her very inclusiveBentonville Film Festival.We have to admit that we never once thought of Geena for this honor but it probably didn't occur to us because she's quite young as Honorary recipients go.Geena is just 63 years old and looks yet younger than that.(Angelina Jolie was a total anomaly,age-wise,for the Academy winning the Honorary when she was 39 or 40.Most people are a few decades older than that when they get these kind of lifetime achievement honors.)

As for the four as a unit,it's quite unusual to have only two professions recognized (directing and acting)!Usually the Honoraries mix it up more than that with someone 'below the line' thrown in.At any rate,we'll celebrate each one of them with a miniseries right here at TFE before the Governor's Awards in October.

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Reader Comments (30)

Disappointing...except Lynch maybe.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterGeri

Lina Wertmuller and David Lynch...YAY!!!!!

June 4,2019 | Unregistered Commenterthevoid99

Should have been CATHERINE DENEUVE
And if a Davis should get the Honorary Oscar,it's JUDY DAVIS

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterKl

DAVID fuckin' LYNCH!

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterPhilip H.

These are all wonderful choices!Especially thrilled for Lynch.A competitive Oscar is sadly too much to hope for now,but I'll always cherish that Mulholland Dr best director nomination.Feels like a tiny miracle that happened even with the director's branch being the most open to auteurist work.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterBrad

Wes Studi who?Guess that choice checks the box...

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterTOM

Solid picks all around,although certainly not obvious ones.Wes Studi has delivered a number of memorable performances in mostly small roles.If only he had more opportunities to shine.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterW.J.

Davis getting the Hersholt is obnoxious.The indigenous actor getting it is solely political.I'm fine with the directorial honorees.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered Commenter/3rtful

So happy that Geena is getting more recognition for her work.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterAdam Lewis

I still want a honorary Oscar to Carmen Maura

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterCésar Gaytán

I would dream for Giancarlo Giannini to give the award to Wertmuller,but we know they are going to pick an actress like Jolie or Chastain to make some lame speech about feminism and who will watch a random movie of hers for the first time the day before and search her on wikipedia.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterPablo

@/3rtful
I always like your comments,this time i have to disagree,Studi deserve it!!!

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterDoug

These choices disappoint mightily.

Is Lynch terminally ill?I really like him but this recognition is much too early otherwise.

Studi.We know why.

Wertmuller's inclusion is defensible,(but barely).

These awards should honor artists late in their careers who have-not been recognized with a deserved Oscar award.They should not be demeaned by virtue signaling.The Governors are failing in their duties and over-reacting to recent criticisms.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterPete

I don't think Wertmuller has been chosen for feminist reasons!She's been critiqued by feminists in the past.Sure,she is a female director and the first female director to get a Directing nomination,but Seven Beauties (for one) would be hugely controversial if released as a new film today,above all because it is written and directed by a woman.But good on her - it's a singular career.And I would love it if Giancarlo Giannini can present her with it.

Great news about Lynch.I agree with Brad: the Directing nomination for Mulholland Drive is a miracle - though I'd say not a tiny one but a huge one.

I didn't see Geena Davis's award coming,but good for her.

And if this Oscar brings more attention to Studi's work,then that'll be a cool thing to happen.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterEdward L.

Pete,David Lynch is 73 and he's probably not going to make another movie and he's certainly never going to win won if he does and it's anything like TWIN PEAKS: THE RETURN or INLAND EMPIRE.I am so excited he's up there.

Can't wait to hear Laura,Kyle and Naomi speak.And a return appearance by the Santa Monica cow,perhaps?

What I like about the Wes Study win is that alongside the likes of Cicely Tyson,they are clearly making a concerted effort to acknowledge the achievements and major POC names who were never given the *opportunity* to be full-blown megastars but who have contributed to the understanding and advancement of actors of colour.I like the choice.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn Dunks

Geena Davis > Susan Sarandon

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterLevity

I'm super happy because we all know that Deneuve,Von Sydow,Keitel or Ullmann are all going to live forever so there's time.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

Peggy Sue -- right?(sigh) Oooh,and Harvey Keitel is a great idea now that you mention it

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterNATHANIEL R

You can't explain the 90s without him!

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

I find all of these recipients to be inspired choices.Each of them has had long,illustri-ish careers and represent an interesting cross-section of cinema.70+ is a totally appropriate age for an honorary.(They're not getting any younger.)

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterMareko

The directors branch recognized Lynch for Blue Velvet and Scorsese for Last Temptation so his Mulholland Dr nod isn't that radical considering they have their idiosyncratic favorites.

June 4,2019 | Unregistered Commenter/3rtful

I can't think of anyone I'd like to see win an honorary more than Lynch.Both for his accomplishments and the speech reflecting on his career (or whatever's in his head that day).

June 4,2019 | Unregistered CommenterMarsha Mason

Yawn.Except for Lunch,these are all virtue signalling "Let's try and out-woke one another"choices.I admire Lina Wertmüller but like Cicely Tyson,one failed nomination 40 years ago does not equal a pivotal career in cinema...

June 5,2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeter A.

Yawn.Except for Lynch,these are all virtue signalling "Let's try and out-woke one another"choices.I admire Lina Wertmüller but like Cicely Tyson,one failed nomination 40 years ago does not equal a pivotal career in cinema...

June 5,2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeter A.

Why does the Humanitarian Oscar even exist?

June 5,2019 | Unregistered CommenterEvangelina

I understand the AMPAS' desire to correct cultural injustice with these Honorary Awards—as they've done with Cicely Tyson and others.In a world where Alicia Vikander has an Oscar statuette,why shouldn't some relatively unknown journeyman actor get one,too?Doesn't bother me.And the Hersholt has always been a good way to signal support for certain political causes,even though it feels kind of random and redundant at times.

But if those are the new priorities,this list should be longer.Too many bona fide legends are waiting for the honor,so I can't understand why they're only giving a few out every year.That approach is very zero-sum when there's nothing limiting the size of the pie.

They're also not televising these anymore,so if they chose 12 people each year it wouldn't fuck with their ceremony.

June 5,2019 | Unregistered CommenterH

They gave a Hersholt to Oprah,who had acted - not counting voice roles - in a grand total of five movies at the time (A Wrinkle in Time came later).Geena Davis is completely deserving given her philanthropic work and actual extensive film career.

Lynch can absolutely still win a competitive Oscar;Spike Lee just won a competitive Oscar after winning an Honorary.But it's good to honor people when they are young enough to appreciate the honor,and Lynch has been somewhat cool on working in film in the future.

I agree that Wertmuller's movies would be deemed "problematic"today.But she and Greta Gerwig are the only two women nominated for Best Director who haven't won Oscars,亚博主页and Gerwig will probably win in the future.

June 5,2019 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

I think everyone involved with Last of The Mohicans deserves an honorary Oscar since they should have received them at the time!;-)

June 5,2019 | Unregistered CommenterDave in Hollywood

Im so ashamed.Ive only ever seen Eraserhead once when I was 14,and high as the day is long.i havent even seen Twin Peaks (and I had a GD hipster phase in high school!).I gotta change this and pronto...

June 5,2019 | Unregistered Commenterkris01

Perhaps a posthumous one for Doris Day,thus solving the issue of the recipient having to attend.
And,honestly,who had a bigger heart?

June 7,2019 | Unregistered CommenterChristopher sands

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