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Jeff Bridges: ‘If I’m Lucky, I’ll Be Associated With the Dude for the Rest of My Life’

Chris Pine introduced the Cecil B. DeMille tribute to his “Hell and High Water” co-star Jeff Bridges at the 69th Golden Globes by referencing Bridges’ most iconic movie role, the Dude in “The Big Lebowski.”

“Well, far out man, your dudeness. He’s made eccentric characters truly iconic. And yes, I am talking about el dude.”

Bridges, who has been nominated for seven Oscars, received the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn.’s Cecil B. DeMille Award for career achievement on Sunday. The 69-year-old actor has starred in dozens of films, but many fans consider his portrayal of Jeff “The Dude” Lebowski in the Coen brothers’ “The Big Lebowski” to be his most memorable performance.

“Sometimes there’s an actor who just makes it look easy,” said Sam Elliott over a montage of Jeff Bridges’ best movie roles. He ended the montage saying, “Sometimes making it look easy can be mighty hard work.”

Bridges accepted his tribute with a rambling and sentimental speech that touched on the directors who have influenced his career, author Buckminster Fuller and his family, including brother Beau and sister Cindy.

He also thanked Peter Bogdanovich who “kicked the whole party off” with “The Last Picture Show,” and the Coen brothers, whom he called “true masters.”

“If I’m lucky I’ll be associated with the Dude of rest of my life. I feel so honored to be apart of that film,” Bridges said.

“We are alive. We can really make a difference. We can turn this this ship in the way we want to go, man. Towards love. Creating a healthy planet for all of us,” Bridges concluded.

Bridges started his career early when he appeared with his father Lloyd Bridges in television’s “Sea Hunt” and “The Lloyd Bridges Show.” He earned his first Oscar nomination in 1971’s “The Last Picture Show” for his supporting actor performance as Duane Jackson, a teenager searching for direction. He scored another supporting actor nomination opposite Clint Eastwood in Michael Cimino’s “Thunderbolt and Lightfoot” in 1974 and his first nod for a leading performance in John Carpenter’s “Starman” a decade later.

Two years after immortalizing the Dude in 1998, he received his fourth nomination for playing straight-talking American president Jackson Evans in Rod Lurie’s “The Contender.” In 2009, he won his only Oscar as lead actor in “Crazy Heart,” the story of a country-western singer that was partially inspired by Hank Thompson and Ramblin’ Jack Elliott.

Bridges scored his sixth nomination for the Coen brothers’ “True Grit” remake in 2010 as Rooster Cogburn and his seventh as a heartbroken Texas Ranger in David Mackenzie’s “Hell or High Water.”

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