The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced honorees for its 2016 Governors Awards, with Jackie Chan, Oscar-winning film editor Anne V Coates, casting director Lynn Stalmaster and prolific documentary filmmaker Frederick Wiseman landing the annual honorary Oscars. The gala is November 12 at the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland.
“The Honorary Award was created for artists like Jackie Chan, Anne Coates, Lynn Stalmaster and Frederick Wiseman – true pioneers and legends in their crafts,” said Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs in announcing the recipients, who were chosen during Tuesday night’s Academy Board of Governors meeting. “The Board is proud to honor their extraordinary achievements, and we look forward to celebrating with them at the Governors Awards in November.”
The Oscars organization can have up to four honorees each year, including a winner of the Irving Thalberg Award, though the Academy Governors haven’t seen fit to bestow that to anyone since Francis Ford Coppola in 2010. Last year, Spike Lee, Gena Rowlands and Debbie Reynolds earned honors.
The Honorary Award, an Oscar statuette, is given “to honor extraordinary distinction in lifetime achievement, exceptional contributions to the state of motion picture arts and sciences, or for outstanding service to the Academy.”
Chan, the Hong Kong-born actor whose first movie role came at age 8, was trained at the Peking Opera. He went on to make more than 30 martial arts films in Hong Kong — often directing and producing as well as starring and of course doing his own stuntwork. He American films starting with The Legend Of Drunken Master and Rumble In The Bronx spawned the likes of the Rush Hour franchise, Shanghai Noon and later The Karate Kid and Kung Fu Panda pics and made him a global star. He’s currently making his next film: the sci-fi action movie Bleeding Steel.
The English-born Coates’ 60 years in the industry included winning the Oscar for editing David Lean’s Lawrence of Arabia and nommed four more times (for Becket, The Elephant Man, In The Line Of Fire and Out Of Sight. Her credits include Sidney Lumet’s Murder On The Orient Express, Chaplin and Erin Brockovich, and most recently she cut Fifty Shades Of Grey.
Wiseman has made 40 documentary films in the past 50 years, with No. 40 last year’s New York love letter In Jackson Heights which hit last fall’s film festival circuit. His long career has not included an Oscar but will now have one to join three Primetime Emmys, a Peabody and a Golden Lion in Venice in 2014 for lifetime achievement.
Stalmaster’s more than 200 feature film casting credits include Inherit The Wind, In The Heat Of The Night, The Graduate, Fiddler On The Roof, Harold And Maude, Deliverance, Coming Home, Tootsie and The Right Stuff. The pics helped launch careers for the likes of Jon Voight, Richard Dreyfuss, Scott Wilson, Jill Clayburgh, Christopher Reeve and John Travolta.