Glenn Close and Her Dog Receive Maltin Modern Master Award
Glenn Close and Pip (Photos: Fritz Olenberger)
By edhat staff
Glenn Close and her adorable dog Pip were presented with the Maltin Modern Master Award at the Arlington Theatre Sunday afternoon.
Close was scheduled to arrive on Saturday evening, but due to weather conditions and the closure of Highway 101, she rescheduled for the following afternoon.
Film critic Leonard Maltin led a career retrospective discussion with Close from the beginning of her acting career to her recent Oscar-nominated performance in "The Wife." She was greeted by a lengthy standing ovation by the audience before taking a seat.
About 12-13 minutes into the interview, Close’s dog Pip ran on-stage to join her. When Pip showed up, Maltin remarked, “You’re about to be upstaged.” The audience was very amused and there were a lot of “ oohs ,” “awws,” and applause.
During the sit-down conversation, Maltin described Close as “one of the greatest actresses on the planet” and continued the praise by saying, “I don’t think there is any facet of show business that she hasn’t attempted and succeeded at.”
Discussing arguably her most iconic role in "Fatal Attraction," Close said she did more research for this role than any other character she ever played. After getting the part she took the script to two psychiatrists because she wanted to know if the behavior of the character was possible and what would cause it. “I ended up with great compassion and empathy for that character,” she said.
People were so upset by the original ending of "Fatal Attraction," where Close’s character kills herself and Michael Douglas’ character goes to jail because his fingerprints are on the knife, that the studio decided to re-shoot it, much to Close’s dismay.
When discussing her role as Cruella de Vil, Close said she loves fairy tales and Disney witches. “I worked very hard -- it was a John Hughes script -- and I felt very strongly that she wasn’t mean enough. That they were trying to water her down,” she said. In the original cartoon, Cruella was extraordinarily mean, so Close got permission to pull lines from the cartoon when she constructed the character for the live action version.
On her Golden Globe-winning and Oscar-nominated performance in "The Wife," Close described how the film almost didn't get made, that it took the producers 14 years to get the money together.
When she received the script she thought it was interesting and unlike other things that she’s done before so she said that they could put her name on the project and see how that could help.
She met with Bjorn Runge, an accomplished Swedish director who had not yet made an English language film, and said she really liked him. “I think of him as a total collaborator in my performance because he trusted the close-up, he knew where to put the camera, and he knew how to light our faces. My performance ‘The Wife,’ a lot of it is just in close-up, and without his wonderful instinct about that I don’t think it would have had the impact that it has,” said Close.
The film was made in the late fall of 2016, before the #MetToo movement, premiered at TIFF, Sony bought it and then decided to hold a year before releasing it.
SBIFF Executive Director Roger Durling asked Close to accept the award in honor of his father, who was a huge fan and took Roger to see her performances on the stage in New York ever since the 1970s.
Close was very moved when she accepted the award. “I am very, very blessed to be able to do the thing that I love most in the world,” she told the audience afterwards. “I’m standing up here representing all the people that have been my collaborators all these years. I would not be here without them. I am deeply, deeply grateful to you, who have gone to see my work and are here today. It means a tremendous amount to me. And I am so touched to have this award with Leonard’s name on it -- a man who has given so much to our industry, who is one of the greats.”
For a few brief moments during her speech, Pip once again managed to steal the spotlight when he decided to roll around on the ground in front of the podium (much to everyone’s amusement).