Some of the biggest stars in entertainment kicked off awards season with the Hollywood Film Awards at the Beverly Hilton on Sunday night.
“We are here to celebrate the craft of cinema, the expertise and excellence that all of you put in to create truly moving stories,” host James Corden started his monologue at the 21st annual event. “And who better to do that than me, the voice of Hi-5 from ‘The Emoji Movie’?”
“Darkest Hour” star Gary Oldman received a standing ovation while being honored with the career achievement award. “I began my career almost 40 years ago and at every juncture, some significant person or turn of fate pushed me along,” he told the audience. “Like many of you here, we all show up to make something grander than real life, and perhaps just maybe to find something of a truth in it. It’s indeed a very special way to make a living.”
Oldman, who sported a Winston Churchill pin on his suit jacket, told reporters on the carpet that he hopes Churchill’s attributes of “determination, perseverance, and acting with moral certainty” resonate with audiences.
While accepting the Hollywood director award for “Darkest Hour,” Joe Wright briefly spoke to the current political climate. “As I travel around America and Europe at the moment, I’m amazed by the level of resistance that is occurring, and that makes me really optimistic and hopeful.”
On the red carpet, he told Variety the relevance of the movie following Churchill’s early days as prime minister at the precipice of World War II “is an accident,” adding, “I’d love to say I had some precedent vision, but I started making this film in January 2016, and there was no topicality to it at all at the time.”
During Kate Winslet‘s actress acceptance speech for “Wonder Wheel,” she praised her fellow actors being honored. “Allison [Janney], I know I don’t really know you, but I just want to be you,” Winslet said. “I do, or just stroke you or something. I mean, we could always kiss, maybe?”
As Janney, who was awarded for supporting actress in “I, Tonya,” headed onstage to give Winslet a quick kiss, Winslet said, “Oh, it’s going to happen! This is an exciting moment, isn’t it?”
Jake Gyllenhaal gave a moving speech while accepting an actor award for “Stronger,” where he plays real-life Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman.
“I’m standing up here tonight pretty damn grateful to be receiving this award because I was given the opportunity, actually the honor, to portray the life of an extraordinary human,” Gyllenhaal told the crowd. “I guess that’s how it works as an actor. Sometimes you get lucky to play someone that you could never be.”
He added of Bauman, “For me, swimming in his energy has opened me up too. He’s reordered my priorities, opened my heart, taught me lessons that I didn’t know that I had to learn.”
Harrison Ford made an appearance to honor “Blade Runner 20149” producers, while Angelina Jolie and Loung Ung were recognized for “First They Killed My Father.” Dustin Hoffman presented his co-star Adam Sandler with a comedy award for “The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected),” and Sean “Diddy” Combs took home the documentary award for “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: A Bad Boy Story.”
Previously announced honors of the night included breakout performers Timothee Chalamet for “Call Me By Your Name” and Mary J. Blige for “Mudbound.” Ensemble awards were presented to the casts of “The Big Sick,” “I, Tonya,” and “Mudbound.” During the show, Common and Andra Day performed “Stand Up for Something” from the movie “Marshall,” which took home a song award.
Other presenters and honorees in attendance included Amy Adams, Annette Bening, Dakota Johnson, Eva Longoria, Melissa McCarthy, Vince Vaughn, Shailene Woodley, James Franco, and Dave Franco.
Corden ended the ceremony addressing the mass shooting that took place earlier Sunday at a church in Texas. “It would be remiss of me not to mention the people in Sutherland Springs in Texas and all of those who have been affected by the senseless acts of violence,” he said. “On behalf of everybody involved in the Hollywood Film Awards, our thoughts are with everybody tonight.”