Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Robert DeNiro: “Leonardo DiCaprio Has Replaced Me as Scorsese’s Go-to Guy”


It was all in jest last night at the Hollywood Film Awards at the Beverly Hilton. Our LEAH SYDNEY reports that Robert DeNiro, who rarely speaks for very long, went on at some length when he won Best Supporting Actor for “Silver Linings Playbook” (an award that may duplicate itself as the season goes on). DeNiro said: “I’m an old hand at award ceremonies.  I’ve handed out Oscars to Sean Penn, Eli Wallach and Francis Ford Coppola. I even gave Ben Stiller an award,  I think it was at a lunch or something.  Hell I even gave Don Rickles an award and I don’t even like him.  I’ve given a half a dozen lifetime achievement awards to Marty Scorsese, even though Leo DiCaprio has taken my place as his go-to guy.”

Most of the evening had something to do with Harvey Weinstein, who was there. DeNiro won for “Silver Linings,” Dustin Hoffman got an award for “Quartet,” Ben Affleck–who made his name with Harvey–got an award for “Argo.” Quentin Tarantino, whose “Django Unchained” is getting ready to launch, was there, as were “Silver Linings” director David O. Russell and star Bradley Cooper, plus former “Chicago” Oscar nominee Richard Gere (“Chicago”), Marion Cotillard, Amy Adams (in Harvey’s “The Master”), and Judd Apatow.

It was quite an A list soiree for Carlos de Abreu,  founder and executive director of the awards of the Hollywood Film Festival, and of

Lots of bawdy humor and inside jokes make this ceremony the cleverest one of the season. Bradley Cooper was given the Hollywood Actor Award by director-designer Tom Ford. Cooper said: “David O. Russell took a real shot with me which is not lost on me at all.  I hit the jackpot.  “

Next up was Seth Rogen who gave The Comedy Award to Judd Apatow.  Seth said sarcastically.” It’s awesome that I get up after two of the most handsome men in the universe. [Cooper and Ford] I would f— them both.”

Seth went on to say, “So this is the first stop of the awards season or if you work in comedy it’s the last stop of the awards seasons.  Les Miz just f—ed us all.  Why is it so hard for comedies?  Amazing thing about this awards show; none of these movies have come out yet.  Who votes for these things?  Somebody named Carlos?  I picture Carlos The Jackal.”

Abreu, a lovely guy, has a good thick skin, thank goodness.

Seth went on about his feelings for Judd.  “Hey Judd is a good director.  But not as good as Ben Affleck.  If Judd had directed ‘Argo,’ it would have been unsuspenseful and sucked.”

With the crowd laughing, Judd came on and said, “Seth just did my entire f—ng speech.”

Real life CIA Agent Tony Mendez, on whose story “Argo” is based, gave Ben his award.

Ben Affleck said” “I’m honored to play somebody who’s a real person and an American hero.  It’s more than profoundly humbling, its an education and extraordinary.  I’d like to thank all the showbiz people here,” Then Ben looked specifically at Harvey Weinstein and said, “Harvey” to which the crowd cracked up.

Dustin Hoffman, who received The Hollywood Breakthrough Director Award for his film ‘Quartet,’ also spoke directly to Weinstein:  “I see Harvey in front of me, he gave me wonderful notes.  It doesn’t mean that for my next one I’ll listen to them.”  Dustin then went on to thank his agent, WME’s Adam Venit, and his wife Lisa Hoffman, who quipped, “Unfortunately I found out that they were having an affair.  It was their way of getting me out of LA.”

Helen Hunt presented the Hollywood Breakthrough Performance Award to her Sessions co-star John Hawkes.  John remarked, “after 26 years in the business, its never too late to make a first impression.”

Diablo Cody gave The Hollywood Screenwriter Award to Quentin Tarantino.  Quentin commented, “It’s strange to get an award while you’re still in the editing room.  I’m literally going to go home and watch dallies to cut tomorrow.  Away we go!”

Richard Gere then got the last award of the night, the Hollywood Career Achievement Award, presented to him by Edward Norton.  Gere dedicated to his agent of over forty years, the late Ed Limato.  Richard said, “I’m not aware of time very much.  I don’t think I’m old enough to get these kind of awards yet, but I appreciate it.”



Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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