A Line by Line Analysis of Jodie Foster’s Golden Globes Speech
12:35 pm, January 14th | by Colette McIntyre
The Golden Globes were last night and usually we’re not ones to brag, but we were right about a lot of things. Some host-on-Clooney action? Check. A Clinton appearance? Check. A Sarah Palin impression? Almost! Tina and Amy were unsurprisingly amazing as hosts but the real scene-stealer was Jodie Foster’s rambling acceptance speech for the Cecil B. DeMille award for lifetime achievement in film. It was witty; it was emotional; it was a climatic coming out (…we think?). We just had to take a closer look at it this morning.
Robert Downey Jr. presented a reel of Jodie Foster’s career that was seemingly edited together by some Axe commercial director — it was XTREME — and inexplicably opened with a scene from Panic Room. After some applause, Jodie took the stage in an intergalactic chainmail gown (that we loved) and held nothing back:
“Well, for all of you ‘SNL’ fans, I’m 50! I’m 50!”
“You know, I need to do that without this dress on, but you know, maybe later at Trader Vic’s, boys and girls. What do you say? I’m 50! You know, I was going to bring my walker tonight but it just didn’t go with the cleavage.”
Evidently Trader Vic’s is a chain of Polynesian-themed restaurants and not a bourgeois version of Trader Joe’s, which was what I originally thought. Foster’s constant harping on her age made me both uncomfortable and smugly happy, as if Jodie Foster was some renegade operative meant to take Hollywood down from the inside by revealing all of the industry’s prejudices and hypocrisies. “Hollywood hates old people!” (And by “people”, I mean “women”, obviously.)
“Robert [Downey Jr.], I want to thank you for everything: for your bat-crazed, rapid-fire brain, the sweet intro. I love you and Susan and I am so grateful that you continually talk me off the ledge when I go on and foam at the mouth and say, ‘I’m done with acting, I’m done with acting, I’m really done, I’m done, I’m done.’”
Foaming at the mouth?! I thought Robert left all that stuff behind in the ’90s! Seriously though, I love that Jodie Foster and Robert Downey Jr. are good friends; now I have dreams of shacking up in a cabin with the two of them for a weekend, listening to them swap stories of drunken Harvey Weinstein antics, all of us wearing pajama jeans and shelling peas.
“Trust me, 47 years in the film business is a long time. You just ask those Golden Globes, because you crazy kids, you’ve been around here forever. You know, Phil you’re a nut, Aida, Scott — thank you for honoring me tonight. It is the most fun party of the year, and tonight I feel like the prom queen.”
47 years! Lindsay Lohan has barely survived a decade! You go, Jodie Coco! You deserve to feel like a prom queen.
“Thank you. Looking at all those clips, you know, the hairdos and the freaky platform shoes, it’s like a home-movie nightmare that just won’t end, and all of these people sitting here at these tables, they’re my family of sorts, you know. Fathers mostly. Executives, producers, the directors, my fellow actors out there, we’ve giggled through love scenes, we’ve punched and cried and spit and vomited and blown snot all over one another — and those are just the costars I liked.”
And to think that all that’s just what she did with Jared Leto! If only you knew the zany hijinks she got into with Sir Anthony Hopkins.
“But, you know, more than anyone else, I share my most special memories with members of the crew. Blood-shaking friendships, brothers and sisters. We made movies together, and you can’t get more intimate than that.”
“So while I’m here being all confessional, I guess I have a sudden urge to say something that I’ve never really been able to air in public.”
OMG, JODIE! EITHER YOU ARE GOING TO TALK ABOUT HOW PRESIDENT REAGAN ALMOST DIED FOR YOU OR YOU ARE COMING OUT, YOU MAJESTIC WOMAN!
“So, a declaration that I’m a little nervous about but maybe not quite as nervous as my publicist right now, huh Jennifer?”
SHE’S TOTALLY COMING OUT! THIS IS GOING TO HAPPEN! THIS IS SO GREAT!
“But I’m just going to put it out there, right? Loud and proud, right? So I’m going to need your support on this.”
THIS IS IT! THIS IS HAPPENING! THIS IS GOING TO BE SO EMOTIONAL AND INSPIRATIONAL AND I CANNOT WAIT!
“I am single. Yes I am, I am single.”
“No, I’m kidding — but I mean I’m not really kidding, but I’m kind of kidding. I mean, thank you for the enthusiasm. Can I get a wolf whistle or something?”
Oh, Jodie; you saucy woman, you!
“…be a big coming-out speech tonight because I already did my coming out about a thousand years ago back in the Stone Age, in those very quaint days when a fragile young girl would open up to trusted friends and family and co-workers and then gradually, proudly to everyone who knew her, to everyone she actually met.”
Oh! The ol’ bait and switch at it again! She just came out! …Right? That’s what just happened? Did that just happen? Guys?
“You know, you guys might be surprised, but I am not Honey Boo Boo Child. No, I’m sorry, that’s just not me. It never was and it never will be. 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. It’s not bad work if you can get it, though. 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. Privacy. Someday, in the future, people will look back and remember how beautiful it once was. I have given everything up there from the time that I was 3-years-old. That’s reality-show enough, don’t you think?”
I think Jodie Foster just told us all to go to hell and I DON’T EVEN CARE, SHE’S FLAWLESS. It’s important to remember that celebrities don’t owe us anything — explanations of their sexuality, photos of their children, or even wearing underwear on the red carpet. Celebrities: you do you!
“There are a few secrets to keeping your psyche intact over such a long career. The first, love people and stay beside them. That table over there, 222, way out in Idaho, Paris, Stockholm, that one, next to the bathroom with all the unfamous faces, the very same faces for all these years. My acting agent, Joe Funicello — Joe, do you believe it, 38 years we’ve been working together? Even though he doesn’t count the first eight. Matt Saver, Pat Kingsley, Jennifer Allen, Grant Niman and his uncle Jerry Borack, may he rest in peace. Lifers. My family and friends here tonight and at home, and of course, Mel Gibson. You know you save me too.”
I was with her until that last line, then I made a confused noise reminiscent of Scooby Doo. Why are we being nice to Mel Gibson?
“There is no way I could ever stand here without acknowledging one of the deepest loves of my life, 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. Thank you, Cyd. I am so proud of our modern family. Our amazing sons, Charlie and Kit, who are my reason to breathe and to evolve, my blood and soul. And boys, in case you didn’t know it, this song, all of this, this song is for you. 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.”
OH GOD, ALL THE TEARS. I AM CRYING AGAIN JUST READING THIS. I AM CRYING THE SAME UGLY TEARS I CRY WHEN I HEAR PHILIP PHILIPS’ “HOME” WHICH MAKES EMOTIONAL BECAUSE IT REMINDS ME OF THE OLYMPICS. When watching this last night, I wept from this point on through the rest of the speech until the commercials. And just when I was gaining my composure again, a Google Chrome ad came on. Google Chrome commercials always make me weep and it’s because they literally know exactly what will make me cry. They have that information. They know all our weaknesses and that we once searched “why do people get lonely” when we were drunk.
“This feels like the end of one era and the beginning of something else. Scary and exciting and now what? Well, I may never be up on this stage again, on any stage for that matter. Change, you gotta love it. I will continue to tell stories, to move people by being moved, the greatest job in the world. It’s just that from now on, I may be holding a different talking stick. And maybe it won’t be as sparkly, maybe it won’t open on 3,000 screens, maybe it will be so quiet and delicate that only dogs can hear it whistle. But it will be my writing on the wall.”
Everyone thinks that this is the moment when Jodie Foster announces her retirement but it seems pretty clear to me that she is sharing her plans to work on smaller, perhaps artier, films and acknowledging that this act in her career may be filled with less accolades and openings and PR brouhaha. This is the part of the speech that you would hashtag “real talk.”
“Jodie Foster was here, I still am, and I want to be seen, to be understood deeply and to be not so very lonely. Thank you, all of you, for the company. Here’s to the next 50 years.”
“I want to be seen, to be understood deeply and to be not so very lonely and to not be so very lonely.” Damn girl; like Google Chrome, you get me. Jodie Foster, you are one helluva dame. You got moxie and I like that. Your speech may have been meandering, but it was also brave and honest and kind of perfect. It went exactly where it needed to go.