Scarlett Johansson, whose long-awaited solo Marvel movie Black Widow finally hits theaters and Disney+ next month, is being feted this fall as the 35th recipient of the American Cinematheque Award. After going with a virtual presentation last year for 2020 honoree Spike Lee, the organization’s marquee event returns to normalcy, with its November 18 ceremony taking place at the Beverly Hilton where it was held last in 2019, when Charlize Theron was the recipient.
The event is an annual fundraiser for the nonprofit organization that continues its year-round programming at the Aero Theatre in Santa Monica and Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood. After a year-plus shutdown due to the pandemic, the Aero just reopened June 10. The Egyptian, now under the purview of Netflix, is undergoing renovations before reopening as a venue both Netflix and American Cinematheque (on the weekends) will be using for their programming.
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American Cinematheque board chair Rick Nicita announced Johansson’s selection Tuesday by stating: “Scarlett Johansson’s career embodies the essence of the American Cinematheque award. Her immense talent has shone brightly from her movie debut as a child through her emergence as a megastar of blockbusters. She has acted in adventurous independent films with cutting-edge directors. She has starred in the most commercial of franchises. She has taken leading roles and supporting roles in movies budgeted big and small. Whenever she graces the screen with her luminous presence, the audience knows that they will see a dedicated artist at the height of her powers. We can’t wait to share in the next phase of Scarlett Johansson’s marvelous career.”
A Tony and BAFTA winner and a rare double acting Oscar nominee in the same year, Johansson most recently was seen in the final installment of the Avengers film series, Avengers: Endgame, reprising her role as Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow; in Netflix’s Marriage Story, directed by Noah Baumbach; and in Taika Waititi’s Jojo Rabbit. Other recent roles include Avengers: Infinity War, Lucy, Under the Skin, Ghost in the Shell, Isle of Dogs and Her, which earned her a Best Actress award at the Rome Film Festival.
As Nicole Barber in 2019’s Marriage Story she was nominated for an Oscar, SAG Award and a BAFTA; the same groups gave her nominations for her supporting role in Jojo Rabbit. A Best Actress winner at the Venice Film Festival for her starring role opposite Bill Murray in Lost in Translation, she also won a Tony for her Broadway debut in the Arthur Miller play A View From a Bridge opposite Liev Schreiber. She also appeared on Broadway as Maggie in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof in 2013.
At age 12, Johansson earned recognition for her performance as Grace Maclean, the teen traumatized by a riding accident in Robert Redford’s The Horse Whisperer. She went on to star in Terry Zwigoff’s Ghost World. Another milestone came at age 10, when she earned an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Manny & Lo.
A New York native, Johansson made her professional acting debut at age 8 in the Off Broadway production of Sophistry with Ethan Hawke at New York’s Playwright’s Horizons.
Her other film credits include: Hail, Caesar!, The Jungle Book, Sing, Chef, The Avengers, Don Jon, Hitchcock, We Bought A Zoo, Iron Man 2, In Good Company, A Love Song for Bobby Long, Match Point, He’s Just Not That Into You, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, The Other Boleyn Girl, The Spirit, Girl with a Pearl Earring, The Island, The Black Dahlia, The Prestige, The Nanny Diaries, North, Just Cause, and The Man Who Wasn’t There.
Previous American Cinematheque Award honorees include Eddie Murphy (1986), Bette Midler (1987), Robin Williams (1988), Steven Spielberg (1989), Ron Howard (1990), Martin Scorsese (1991), Sean Connery (1992), Michael Douglas (1993), Rob Reiner (1994), Mel Gibson (1995), Tom Cruise (1996), John Travolta (1997), Arnold Schwarzenegger (1998), Jodie Foster (1999), Bruce Willis (2000), Nicolas Cage (2001), Denzel Washington (2002), Nicole Kidman (2003), Steve Martin (2004), Al Pacino (2005), George Clooney (2006), Julia Roberts (2007), Samuel L. Jackson (2008), Matt Damon (2010), Robert Downey Jr. (2011), Ben Stiller (2012), Jerry Bruckheimer (2013), Matthew McConaughey (2014), Reese Witherspoon (2015), Ridley Scott (2016), Amy Adams (2017), Bradley Cooper (2018), Theron (2019) and Lee (2020).
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