Jane Fonda has been tapped as the 42nd recipient of AFI’s Lifetime Achievement Award, to be presented June 5 at ceremonies in L.A. and airing on TNT.
After a self-imposed 15-year hiatus, Fonda returned to acting in 2005; since then, she has written her autobiography, “My Life So Far” which was No. 1 on the N.Y. Times bestseller list; won a Tony nomination for the 2009 “33 Variations”; received an Emmy nom this year for HBO’s “Newsroom”; and appears as Nancy Reagan in the current pic “Lee Daniels’ The Butler.”
AFI will have plenty of material to show, including her appearance at the 1978 AFI Lifetime Award to her father Henry Fonda. She has made more than 40 features, plus TV and stage appearances, and has earned seven Oscar noms, winning twice.
Her Oscar win for “Klute” came in 1971, when the nation was split over U.S. involvement in Vietnam. Though her political activism was controversial (and still is, in some places), her work in that film was widely recognized as deserving the honor. Her second win was for “Coming Home.”
For the first decade of her film career, Fonda often played in fluffy comedies (or campy sex romps like “Barbarella”), until her dramatic turn in the 1969 “They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?” changed her career. Aside from films, her name became synonymous over the years with aerobics (she was responsible for two dozen videos, six books and 13 audios) and of course activism, protesting the war as well as espousing equal rights and ecological concerns.