One objective of this blog is to encourage productive discussion and debate within the "comments" forum. Leaving comments has been made easier. No registration is required. Comments can be left anonymously. A Hassle free and easy forum to leave a comment. However, any inappropriate comments will be deleted by blog administrators. Thank you for commenting so your voice can be heard.


Monday, January 14, 2013

JODIE FOSTER'S 47 YEARS IN 7 MINUTES LESS 7 SECONDS


Jodie Foster - The 2013 Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient.

Jodie Foster's Emotional Speech at Golden Globe... by lpage2424

One of Hollywood’s most glamorous of events, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s Golden Globes, became the scene for something rather extraordinary and surprisingly, surprising. Last night, towards the end of the show, Jodie Foster received the Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award. Being only 50, but having worked in the industry for 47 years, Foster made for an interesting recipient. Yet, it was Foster’s acceptance speech which arguably “stole the show.”
In what might be called something of a rambling seven minute speech (or perhaps a well scripted highlight of a career spanning 47 years and fraught with her own personal trials and tribulations), Jodie said that “I want to be seen, to be understood deeply and to be not so very lonely.” She also thanked her extended family of people with whom she had worked for decades. And for many, it sounded as if Foster was announcing her retirement.

But then, in the coup de grĂ¢ce, Foster came out to the world-wide audience as a lesbian; well almost, sort of. Foster coyly said, "While I’m here being all confessional, I just have the sudden urge to say something I’ve never been able to air in public. A declaration that I’m a little nervous about. Not quite as nervous as my publicist, huh, Jennifer? But uh, you know, I’m just going to put it out there. Loud and proud. I’m going to need your support. I am ………. single!"
Laughter ensued as everyone expected Foster to say she was a lesbian. The confession became comedy and the line between Foster’s true life and her acting became one and the same. Her seeming confession, her saying that she was nervous, her nervous gulp, and the perceived emotional and rawness of the confession were but an act; Foster revealing that she may have been acting and in an instant used her craft to deliver in perfect comedic timing the line “I am …. Single.”

And then in a moment worthy of a true Hollywood twist, the NBC Broadcast sound cut out and went silent for seven seconds. Was there some conspiracy afoot? Had some revealing and poignant statement been deleted? Was it a pre-planned and highly orchestrated moment at the very instant Foster was to have made her grand announcement in order to grab the attention of every eye and ear watching and listening? The silence was deafeningly loud in its effect.
Following the seven seconds of silence, at which point everyone is now rapt with attention, the sound comes back and Foster says that “…. be a big coming-out speech tonight because I already did my coming out about a thousand years ago back in the Stone Age…” Was there any significance in the missed words? It appears not, except that the silence became itself a statement by Foster that she wanted to be heard and understood.

She continued by thanking her two sons, Charles and Christopher, and making reference to their “modern family” and the woman long rumored to be her partner.
“There's no way I could ever stand here without acknowledging one of the deepest loves of my life," said Foster. "My heroic co-parent, my ex-partner in love but righteous soul sister in life, my confessor, ski buddy, consigliere, most beloved BFF of 20 years, Cydney Bernard."

Social media quickly exploded with news of the "coming out," with comments ranging from “everyone already knew” to “what a courageous and wonderful moment.” Many audience members were moved to tears.
Some commentators took a much harsher stance, such as Gawker which posted an article “The Sheer Gall of Celebrities Demanding Privacy.”
"Last night, Jodie Foster, a famous actress who has been a famous actress for many decades, stood on stage at a glittery Hollywood awards show being broadcast around the world, and, in a lengthy, self-glorifying speech, in front of a crowd of the world's most famous people, asked for.... privacy. Is Jodie Foster clinically insane?"
But what exactly did Jodie’s speech mean? As can be seen by the millions of tweets, hundreds of articles and countless comments, the answer is largely in the eye of the beholder. For her part, Foster said the speech spoke “for itself” and represented what was “most in my heart.”

And there, regardless of all the speculation and comment by others as to what Foster meant, Foster’s speech was an intensely personal expression of gratitude; an acknowledgement that, as most everyone knew, she is a lesbian; and, a statement that she intends to continue pursuing a craft which she loves while doing so according to her owns terms, her own sense of privacy.
Much has been made of her call for some sense of privacy. Ironically, in calling out for privacy, Foster expressed some of the most personal and poignant aspects of her life.

"But seriously, if you had been a public figure from the time that you were a toddler, if you’d had to fight for a life that felt real and honest and normal against all odds, then maybe you too might value privacy above all else.”
Adding a bit of sardonic humor to her call for privacy, Foster says:
"But now I’m told, apparently that every celebrity is expected to honor the details of their private life with a press conference, a fragrance and a prime-time reality show."
Did Foster then turn her disdain of the reality television culture into an insider Hollywood joke? She said: "Please don’t cry because my reality show would be so boring. I would have to make out with Marion Cotillard or I’d have to spank Daniel Craig’s bottom just to stay on the air." Was this a veiled reference to rumors within the Hollywood, inner sanctum lexicon of Craig’s own sexuality, much as the rumors had followed Foster throughout her career?

I disagree with Gawker in that regardless of whether you are a Hollywood star, an outstanding athlete, or an internationally famous singer, you do have a right to some level of personal space and privacy. And Foster was not so much asking for privacy as simply stating that it's simply not relevant whether she is gay or straight and saying that she does not have to tell anyone or address it in any way.
Then, as she moved to the end of her speech, Foster let down that veil of privacy and revealed herself, in the most poignant part of her speech.
"There are a few secrets to keeping your psyche intact over such a long career. The first, love people and stay beside them.” ... “Lifers. My family and friends here tonight and at home, and of course, Mel Gibson. You know you save me too.”
At this point, the cameras cut to Gibson's face. They have been friends since the early days and she has remained beside him despite his homophobia, anti-Semitism, fanatical Christianity (Foster herself professing to being “an atheist”), misogyny and the fact that much of “Hollywood” now hates him. By including Mel Gibson not only at her table but by calling him out in the speech, Foster demonstrated that despite vast differences in ideology and despite public turmoil, that friendship should be cherished and not simply endured.

And finally, like an Oscar winning drama, Foster addressed perhaps one of the most intense and personal aspects of her life, that of her tumultuous life with her mother.
"This brings me to the greatest influence of my life, my amazing mother, Evelyn. Mom, I know you’re inside those blue eyes somewhere and that there are so many things that you won’t understand tonight. But this is the only important one to take in: I love you, I love you, I love you. And I hope that if I say this three times, it will magically and perfectly enter into your soul, fill you with grace and the joy of knowing that you did good in this life. You’re a great mom. Please take that with you when you’re finally OK to go.”

Her plea to her mother was a beautiful, heartfelt moment of unconditional love. Shots of the audience showed many in tears. It is reported that Foster’s mother has advanced stage Alzheimer’s; yet, given the complicated relationship which Foster has had with her mother, one cannot help but wonder if there were multiple meanings to Foster’s saying “Mom, I know you’re inside those blue eyes somewhere.”
But in the end it was forgiveness; the ultimate and last gift which she could give to a mother with whom she had suffered a difficult and painful coexistence. Remember only “love, love, love.” Foster echoed this in her tribute to her sons, telling them that "This whole song is for you!”

So while we may all speculate as to the nuances of Jodie’s speech, it may perhaps be best to simply agree with Foster that her speech represented what was “most in my heart.”

17 comments:

  1. Jodie Foster's speech was all kinds of strange, but I did think the part about her mother was beautiful and heartfelt, and I agree with her on the privacy issues. The word "personal" ought to mean something in the phrase "personal life." And yet, I kind of felt like she overshared about her relationship ending and being lonely and all that. I must admit, I'm puzzled by how Mel Gibson could possibly of helped her in any aspect of life, but she appeared to mean it. I'll give her that it was rather riveting. Jackie Stone

    ReplyDelete
  2. As a rich actress, Foster is immune to the kinds of discrimination that ordinary gays and lesbians face - like the fear of losing your job.
    Were it not for people "coming out," the great advances of the gay and lesbian movement would never have happened.

    ReplyDelete
  3. She was given an award for lifetime achievement at the age of 50. What did you expect? Brandon

    ReplyDelete
  4. I want to know how Jodie Foster stays so YOUNG? She looked no older than Ann Hathaway. Yeah, yeah, I know...plastic surgery....BUT if so, the surgeon is a GENIUS! Don't CARE! She is BEAUTIFUL!!!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Jodie Foster's speech absolutely made me CRY last night! One of the most beautiful, heart-rending, searingly personal things I've ever heard anyone say...and from someone who is normally so fiercely private, that made it even more powerful. That was as real as it gets, in an industry in which most everything is fake. The part that got me blubbering was when she said this to her mother: "Please take that with you when you're finally okay to go." I'm curious how many people recognized the "okay to go" line from her movie "Contact". That's the one movie of hers that made me cry the most, in that scene when the alien comes to her as her father, whom she lost as a child. As someone who lost my own father as a child, I FELT what her character was feeling in that moment. And as someone whose mother is sliding into that same disease, I felt even more what she was saying to her mother. Sadly, the haters are out in force in the webosphere...if you go to any news story about it, don't look at the comments unless you want to be gobsmacked at the vast number of narrow-minded, hateful, ignorant oafs who are out there in our society. What a startling dichotomy: profound grace, and repugnant malignancy. You go Jodie! Interesting blog post.

    ReplyDelete
  6. With gay rights the civil rights issue of our time it's justifiable that some pressure is put on famous people to come out.
    BUT if anyone deserved a mulligan on that it was Foster.
    I'm sure she Still hasn't overcome the nightmare that was John Hinckley.
    I like when she said all the directors and producers were like her father. Since I don't think she ever even knew her father. I thought her speech was fantastic.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I don't understand why gay celebrities should feel pressured to publicly announce their orientation. I don't see how it's any of our business. Sure, I get the part about them showing troubled teenagers that it's OK and that they don't have to hide, but I still don't see the need for media fanfare. Doing it to friends and family is one thing. That's private - and that's exactly how Foster handled it.
    I don't recall there being any pressure on any group to announce anything about themselves except gays. I mean, when was the last time you heard a celebrity go to great lengths to announce they were straight? Excluding Cruise and Travolta, that is. Johnathon

    ReplyDelete
  8. Johnathon : It's more important for red state religious nuts than questioning teens to find out that their favorite actor or actress is actually someone they are supposed to fear.
    Ellen DeGeneres' coming out is not to be discounted in it's impact on average Americans.
    She is to this day one of the most popular TV personalities on the air.
    When JC Penny of all companies decided to make her their spokesperson that was an enormous advance for gay rights.
    So yes celebrities coming out is terribly important and Foster obviously felt the pressure.

    " I mean, when was the last time you heard a celebrity go to great lengths to announce they were straight?"
    Jon surely you are not that silly?

    Katherine

    ReplyDelete
  9. To the person above- Your final sentence kinda sort answered your question: if there was no widespread stigma attached to being gay, then Cruise and Revolta wouldn't feel the need to defend their sexuality, now would they ? Homophobia is still wide spread. Hollywood is a bubble where being straight is abnormal but not in all the space between LA and NYC.

    Cricket Cracker handle

    ReplyDelete
  10. Try as I might to understand how people have perceived Jodie Foster as some closeted person ashamed of herself, I can't do it. She has never had a beard or a "cover" marriage. Never carried on with a co-star. Foster lived her life. She stayed far away from the gossip machine. She didn't Twitter or post every thought that popped into her head. Role model? She's a terrific one. Work hard, do your best, remember your friends in good times and in bad, go to college, avoid celebrity culture - I think she's set a very decent, classy example. That she was able to accomplish all of this, in spite of everything (including the misogynists in Hollywood) is a real testament to her bravery and commitment to living with integrity. Mojo

    ReplyDelete
  11. It's about time we stopped caring about this issue, maybe one day we'll even get to the point where people will feel like they don't have to "come out", where someone saying I'm gay is like someone else stating that their eyes are blue or hair is whatever color. Because it is as simple as that. Green eyes are genetic, just as simply as sexual orientation. B. Shields

    ReplyDelete
  12. What a brave and ground-breaking speech. As always, ive been a fan of Jodie Foster, because she doesn't support the status quo. Just her artistic integrity. Bravo! A fan, evermore xXxx

    ReplyDelete
  13. Since Jodie Foster feels she has to tell the whole world her sexual orientation when no one asked, now it's my turn:
    Yes, it's true, I am a heterosexual. There, I said it. I'm out of the closet.
    Let me ram it down everyone's throat now!! Gay agenda is fucked up and sick. This blog seems to commend JF for being proud to be a lesbian and subjects young children into a wold they didn't ask to be part of. Barry

    ReplyDelete
  14. Barry you sound like an absolute idiot. Had she given a speech giving thanks to her husband and her kids, you wouldn't be saying anything at all. Someone's sexual identity is a part of them, and asking gay people not to talk about it when straight people can talk about it all they want is wrong.

    Her children clearly love her and she said her speech was for them to show them honesty and integrity. Why do you have hate inside you?

    I hate stupidity.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I have two words for you...Bananas Foster!
    I call it like I see it! Though her words to her mom did make a teary eye.

    Bananas Foster is a dessert! Foster is Jodie's last name. I say Banana, instead of Jodie because I think she is a total mess! I thought she lacked humor & her timing was out of step. I thought she was trying to say something to us, the people, in some cryptic way, that nobody really cares too much about. This award has been given to a select list of talented filmmakers & actors. This is who the foreign press thought deserved it. I think a reasonable person would write a speech about her fortitude & share in the pleasures of being able to sustain a career in the arts for such a long period of time...I sensed that she was displeased with her ride, unhappy with the way her public treated, or misunderstood her. She was all over the place & quite frankly, I thought she was way more. a utter disappointment...but looked absolutely beautiful & I loved her in that dress. SJ LOS ANGELES.

    ReplyDelete
  16. As a 50 year old woman from nowhere USA - I get it. She's embarking on the next phase of her life, in full appreciation of her first 50 years and those who were her strength. She was being honored and she wanted to honor those who paved her way. I don' think her statements about her private life come anywhere close to a "coming out". It's her life. Period. She's grateful and she's looking forward not back. I feel exactly the same way. Liz.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Foster's speech was profound. She won the award and she can say anything that is important to her. The mass criticism of her speech which has reached a global fever pitch is astounding. For anyone who says nobody cares; they care or they wouldn't be commenting from ever corner of the earth.
    The take of the speech in this blog review is quite astute and nails it. Nice read. Vivion

    ReplyDelete