The 2017 Governor’s Awards were this weekend, honoring legendary luminaries of the cinema in front of and behind the camera. Actor Donald Sutherland, director/writer Agnès Varda, director/writer/editor/cinematographer Charles Burnett, and cinematographer Owen Roizman were bestowed with Honorary Oscar from the Academy. Four-time Oscar winner Alejandro González Iñárritu was awarded a special Oscar (the first in 27 years) for his virtual reality piece Carne Y Arena, currently on display at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The 2017 Governors Awards were held in the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland in Hollywood, CA on November 11, 2017.
The Governors Awards are the real kick-off to awards season, and most especially, awards season campaigning. Dozens of stars out looking for votes were on hand with many of them introducing the winners including Jennifer Lawrence presenting to Donald Sutherland and Angelina Jolie and Jessica Chastain presenting to Agnès Varda.
Interestingly, both Varda and Sutherland have films in contention this year for competitive Oscars. Varda’s Faces Places seems like the more likely to happen over Sutherland’s Best Actor shot in The Leisure Seeker. There have been five times in Oscar history where someone has won both an Honorary and competitive Oscar in the following Academy Awards ceremony.
At the 1931/32 ceremony, Walt Disney was presented an honorary Oscar for the creation of Mickey Mouse and won an Oscar in the competitive category of short subject (cartoon) for Flowers and Trees.
At the 1938 ceremony, Walt Disney was presented an honorary Oscar for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and won an Oscar in the competitive category of short subject (cartoon) for Ferdinand the Bull.
At the 1941 ceremony, Walt Disney was presented an honorary Oscar for Fantasia and won an Oscar in the competitive category of short subject (cartoon) for Lend a Paw.
At the 1946 ceremony, Harold Russell was presented an honorary Oscar for his performance in The Best Years Of Our Lives and won an Oscar in the competitive category of Best Supporting Actor for the same film.
At the 1961 ceremony, Jerome Robbins was presented an honorary Oscar for the choreography of West Side Story and won an Oscar in the competitive category of director for the same film.
Here is a selection of the presenters and recipient speeches from the 2017 Governors Awards with introductions by new Academy president John Bailey and Steven Spielberg.