AARP cues kudos at gala

Penn recieves life time achievement award, Beverly Hills

An AARP magazine-hosted kudos gala seems like naturally fertile ground for geezer gags and gaffes.

And it was. At Tuesday’s Beverly Wilshire-set dinner, host Michael Nouri shared that his octogenarian father compared his sex life to “shooting pool with a rope,” while various presenters and honorees squinted through their reading glasses and misread the Teleprompter. Frances Fisher, for instance, was introduced as “Frances Farmer.”

Sean Penn, who toasted lifetime achievement award recipient Robert De Niro, opened with: “How old would you feel if I said that Spicoli is 50 in August?”

Underscoring the appropriateness of his kudo, De Niro admitted that he was encouraged to retire when his 2009 pic “Everybody’s Fine” opened with a whimper in December. He quickly added, “I’ve barely reached the midpoint of my career … and now that I’m back at CAA, my calls are being returned!”

Jeff Bridges, actor winner for “Crazy Heart,” said, “I’m digging the old-guy parts! There are a lot of good ones.”

Director John Lee Hancock, who picked up the Readers’ Choice prize for “The Blind Side,” praised the power of the adult drama: “There were so many people that said no to this movie because the teenagers wouldn’t like it.”

“The Last Station” helmer Michael Hoffman presented and accepted the actress kudo on behalf of Helen Mirren. Most of the femme winners were no-shows, including Mirren, Kathryn Bigelow and Nancy Meyers.

Best reading of the Teleprompter went to 10-year-old Jordan Nagai, who voiced the role of the boy scout in “Up.” Producer Jonas Rivera, who picked up the Judges’ Award for Extraordinary Merit for the film, joked, “We called it a coming-of-old-age story.”

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