... Ron Howard for Best Director for "A
Beautiful Mind." Yes, Yes, Yes. I was rooting
with all my might for this once-in-a-lifetime sublime movie, created
with inspired love, respect, heart and soul. It also won Best
Adapted Writing for Akiva
Goldsman; Best Supporting Actress for Jennifer
and Best Picture for Brian
Graser and Ron Howard.
on "A Beautiful Mind"
Ron & Cheryl Howard
I grew up with Ron
Howard. We had fathers named Andy.
Not in real life, of course, but with the rest of America in the 50s
and 60s, via TV, when he played Opie on "The Andy Griffith
Show" and later, as Richie Cunningham on "Happy
Days." While "The Fonz" made the show's fans
swoon, I was thoroughly smitten with Richie Cunningham's
These days, Ron is
part of my real life. Sort of. Not exactly the guy next door,
but as an across the bay neighbor up in Big
Bear. There, on weekends, he and his brother Clint, grew up as
normal kids at their parents' unpretentious, down-to-earth cabin.
These days, his and Cheryl's kids are at the age when their tangle
of activities keep them down the hill. Neighbors keep an eye
on their house just above their parents' original cabin, as Big Bear
neighbors do for one another.
Whenever we take
our walks, I recall that Richie Cunningham sense of humor. I
smile as we pass by, remembering the "Beware: Guard Dog with
AIDS" sign that once hung outside his cabin door.
I loved him from
afar back then, I love him now across the bay. And so the
happiest moment of the evening was seeing that Ron won.
pride, I am so very happy for him.
win is a testament to "Whatever
you can conceive (visualize) and believe, you can
achieve!" ; the
power of commitment, gratitude's
grace, and "Nice
guys do finish first."
"I'm not a good enough actor
anymore to be able to stand up here and make you believe that I
haven't imagined this moment in my mind over the years and played
it out about a thousand times. I'm very grateful for this. I'm
very grateful for an entire lifetime spent involved in this
creative process... It's simple...I'm grateful... Thank you to
John and Alicia Nash for sharing your important story with us. I'm
very, very proud to know you and may you have many years of peace
ahead of you.Thank you to John Nash...I've very proud to know
Howard's Full Acceptance Speech
He acknowledged the loves of his
life: Cheryl, his incredible wife; and their four children, Bryce,
Jocelyn, Paige and Reed. (Aside: Each child's middle name is
the place where they were conceived) With heartfelt
appreciation, he lovingly thanked his father, Rance
Howard, and his mother, Jean
Speegle Howard, who transitioned in September, 2000.
He shared the following story:
his mom had predicted before she passed 18 months ago that he would
win the Oscar this time. He then interjected, "She'd also
made that prediction on every movie I've directed since 1983."
Sweet story. I
think she was smiling through it all. She, too, was rooting for her
boy with all her might. She kept those voters true to their mission
of voting who is best for that year.
Ron Howard is The Best Director.
so much more one can do in spirit!
Other winners that
caught my (favorable) attention as I was preparing for our trip the
next morning were: Halle Berry for Best Actress in
"Monsters Ball" and Renee
for "Best Dressed" at the Academy Awards, for the first
time in the Kodak
Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard.
I am a sucker for the flash, the
glitz, and the excitement that is the Oscars. Two dresses -- and the
women in them -- caught my attention:
Berry was fantastically gorgeous in her peek-a-boo
merlot-colored ball gown by Elie Saab with ornate, floral beaded
hide her berries, just beneath a see-through bodice. The tulle
and taffeta overskirt/train was richly voluptuous and flowing.
She was a vision to behold.
Renee Zellweger was a
knockout in simplicity. Up for Best Actress in "Bridget
Jone's Diary," she was simply ravishing in
a black strapless Carolina Herrera ball gown and Mr. Winston's
diamond earrings, a perfect blend of elegance, glamour and sex
appeal. From zaftig Bridget to svelte (20-pounds-lighter),
elegantly stylish Renee-at-the-Oscars, I was impressed by her
wondrous, touched-by-the-magic-wand transformation.
In the wake of 9/11,
Renee's subdued choice was appropriately tasteful, noticed, and
The most memorable --
and emotional -- acceptance was Halle Berry's. I misted up
when she hugged her Anglo mother, who gave her the courage to dream.
Berry is quite possibly the most beautiful woman on the planet. Flawless!
A hybrid vigor.
To say she is
Afro-American is not accurate, I think, and it doesn't take a math
genius to figure that out. I still don't quite get the one
drop rule. To me, Halle is hapa
for part). Part Afro, part Anglo. To underplay the
Anglo part is as unrealistic as overplaying the Afro part. To
not as adamantly acknowledge the Anglo part of her is to erase or
negate her Anglo ancestors -- and her mother.
She is an American of African and
Anglo heritages, one of The Golden People, as James Michener
describes in the book, Hawai`i. One day, race will be a
moot point. No racial jokes. No race cards.
One day, life will be simpler. It'll just be "we,"
I like the tasteful,
poised and understated, and this, Halle was not. She was
veering out of control -- totally
losing it -- with gasps, sobs and tears. Yet, I was completely taken
in by her genuine shock. Clenching and unclenching her fist,
she momentarily had that deer-caught-in-the-headlights stricken
my God" broke the spell, and after gathering herself, she
uttered, "It's for every
nameless, faceless woman of color who now has a chance because this
door tonight has been opened."
She said it exactly
I was moved by director Arthur
Hiller's acknowledgment of his parents after he received the
Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award from his "Love
Story" stars Ryan O'Neal and Ali McGraw.
"I had an unbelievably caring
mother and father who lived their lives with the moral values of
love and compassion of respect and responsibility for human
dignity and standing up for what's right."
~ Arthur Hiller
The power of excellent
With all due respect to Denzel
Washington, who is "all of our fantasies," how
does Jennifer Connelly win and Russell Crowe lose? How does Russell Crowe
win for "Gladiator," but not for "A Beautiful
Truer words could not have been spoken:
"We wouldn't be here if it weren't for Russell Crowe," said
Academy Award winning producer, Brian Graser.
I guess the voters
didn't want him to win twice in a row.
I guess they wanted to spread the glory around.
I just wish those
voters would keep their mission clear. They are to vote
for the best _____ of that year. No sympathy votes. No
political agenda votes. No it's-his/her-turn votes. No
Washington won for Best
Actor in "Training Day."
his second Oscar; he won best supporting actor for 1989's
"Glory." He is only the second black actor to win a Best
Actor award since Sidney Poitier won in 1963 for "Lilies Of The
My opinion, not
gospel: I think Denzel was due this Oscar for
"Malcolm X." Instead, back then, the award to Al Pacino
for a "Scent of a Woman."
But for this one, while
a powerful and a different "bad guy" performance, he was not due.
Denzel will have his shot at really
earning an Oscar on the horizon. This was hardly it. And I am
one of Denzel's most ardent admirers.
deserved the Best Actor Award, 2002. He was brilliant. He was
Actor. I hope he finds some consolation in producer Brian
It's my honor to work
with the profound Russell Crowe. And we wouldn't be here if it
weren't for Russell Crowe. His amazing dedication, work ethic and
artistry have gotten us here."
Stone & John Travolta came on stage to announce the nominees
for Foreign Films, dancing, a la Ginger and Fred. I delight in
John's joie de vivre. It's contagious.
Sidney Poitier. A class act.
"Life is a Gift."
only gift is a portion of thyself..."
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
| what | archives