Jodie Foster was the recipient of last night’s Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s Cecil B. Demille Lifetime Achievement Award. Jodie’s speech is all anyone can talk about this morning. Some people were moved to tears by her speech, others were left a bit baffled (myself included). Did she really just publicly come out for the first time? I think everyone KNEW she was gay, but to have her bring it up in her speech was a bit strange. She did thank her former partner of 20 years, Cydney Baernard, the mother of her two sons. Foster called her “my confessor, ski buddy, consiliere, righteou soul sister and most beloved BFF of 20 years”. She added “I am so proud of our modern family”.
The 50-year-old Academy Award-winner (for “The Silence of the Lambs” and “The Accused”) has always been protective of her private life, and though she has not hidden her relationship with Bernard or her sexual orientation, she has not allowed it to be fodder for interviews.
Backstage, Foster explained why she had opened up: “The speech kind of speaks for itself. … It’s a big moment. I wanted to say what’s most in my heart.”
Foster had coyly opened up her remarks with, “I’m just going to put it out there, loud and proud. I am, uh, . . . single.”
The audience laughter was followed with her alluding to her coming out: “I already did my coming out a thousand years ago, in the Stone Age,” she said. “Those very quaint days when a fragile young girl would open up to trusted friends and family and co-workers and then gradually to everyone that knew her, everyone she actually met. But now apparently I’m told that every celebrity is expected to honor the details of their private life with a press conference, a fragrance, and a primetime reality show.
“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. But please don’t cry, because my reality show would so boring.”
She added, “If you had been a public figure from the time that you were a toddler, if you had to fight for a life that felt real and honest and normal against all odds, then maybe then you, too, might value privacy above all else. Privacy.
“I have given everything up there from the time that I was three years old — that’s reality show enough, don’t you think?
“There are a few secrets to keeping your psyche intact over such a long career. The first, love people and stay beside them.” She gave a shout-out to her acting agent of 38 years.
Some people took her speech as announcement of retirement, but she’s certainly not going anywhere any time soon. Shortly after her speech, she assured fans she wasn’t going anywhere. “I could never stop acting. You’d have to drag me behind, like, a team of horses. No, I’m not retiring from acting. And, you know, I’d like to be directing tomorrow . . . I’m actually more into it than I have ever been. [My point was] that people change. Change is important. And, you know, hopefully I’ll be doing different things than I did when I was three years old and six years old and ten years old and 20 years old . . . My work is evolving.”
What did you think of her speech?