Better late than never. Jackie Chan received an Honorary Oscar Award at the age of 62 after 56 years of film industry and acting in over 200 films. The Eighth Annual Governors Awards at the Hollywood and Highland Center in Los Angeles proved lucky. Chris Tucker, a co-star in Rush Hour, presented the award. Tom Hanks and Michelle Yeoh were also present.
Everybody enjoyed Jackie Chan movies for a generation. Yet his fortes of martial arts and action comedy remain unrecognized at the Oscars. When is that bias going to change? Tom Hanks may help remedy that. Hanks did compare Chan to John Wayne and Buster Keaton. He certainly deserves all that praise. He has not reached the end of his career either, hopefully. Entertaining millions like he does is no laughing matter.
Lots of interesting stuff happened on Saturday night. Police Story 3 co-star Yeoh introduced a montage of Chan’s work that highlighted his career. And then came Tucker, who called Chan a living legend, a moniker he richly deserves. Chan called the Honorary Oscar a dream. He inspired by his dad.
A supremely happy Jackie Chan speaks his heart out
Chan spoke awesome words and felt honored to be here. His words went straight to the heart of his innumerable fans. His message broke through barriers of language, religion, and nationality. Chan said he broke many bones on his way across a zappy career. He thanked Hong Kong, calling it an incredible city. He expressed pride in being Chinese and thanked Hollywood that taught him so much and made him famous.
Who are the four Lifetime achievers
Politics, elections, and Trump seemed conveniently forgotten for a moment. Controversies over and done for a while. A relaxed ambiance pervaded the august ceremony. This occasion honored four-lifetime achievers, quite differently so. The honors went to editor Anne V. Coates and casting director Lynn Stalmaster besides documentary filmmaker Frederick Wiseman. You know the fourth, the action-comedy star Jackie Chan.
The Ray Dolby Ballroom served as the sumptuous venue. The event brought together actors and filmmakers geared to the annual Oscar race later on. Tom Hanks and Annette Bening danced informally. A live band played swing music. Thank god for the movies, seemed to be the idea. The nation may be in ruins, but dream-like movies would prevail.
Which movie personalities graced the occasion?
Director Judd Apatow and actress Leslie Mann. Damien Chazelle, director of “La La Land,” animatedly spoke with the 20th Century Fox Chairman and Chief Executive Stacey Snider. Felicity Jones and Emma Stone along with Greta Gerwig represented the new generation. Helen Mirren, along with Bruce Dern and Warren Beatty brought along the seniors. Old and young mingled ever so freely!
What happened last year? The 2015 Governors Awards honored Spike Lee, Debbie Reynolds and Gena Rowlands. Get to know the other three awardees this year too besides the evergreen Chan.
The other three-lifetime achievement awards go to
A casting Honorary Oscar? Yes, very much so. Stalmaster at 88, won an Oscar for casting. He worked on classic films like “West Side Story” and “The Graduate.” We forgot to mention “Harold and Maude” besides “Tootsie.”
Editor Coates won the Oscar for the David Lean 1962 epic “Lawrence of Arabia”. She received nominations for four other movies that included “The Elephant Man” and “Out of Sight.”
Wiseman created extraordinary documentary films. These films highlighted social and cultural life. “Titicut Follies” and “High School,” “Law and Order” and “Public Housing” remain fresh in the mind.
The kicking Jackie Chan reverberates through the common memory. Episodes of his action sequences will probably occur in dreams tonight.