The Academy’s Board of Governors voted on Sunday to grant honorary awards to David Lynch, Wes Studi and Lina Wertmüller, and the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award to Geena Davis. The honors will be presented at the Academy’s 11th Annual Governors Awards held October 27, at the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland Center. The honoree slate was announced in a press release Monday morning.
Portions from the official press release:
“These Governors Awards given by the Academy each year recognize individuals who have devoted themselves to a lifetime of artistic accomplishment and brought outstanding contributions to our industry, and beyond,” said Academy President John Bailey. “It is with great pleasure that we announce this year’s recipients.”
Davis, who won an Oscar for her supporting performance in “The Accidental Tourist” (1988), has been a passionate advocate for gender equality in media. She is the founder and chair of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, a nonprofit dedicated to educating and influencing film and television content creators to eliminate gender bias and stereotypes and create a wide variety of female characters in entertainment and media aimed at children.
Born in Missoula, Montana, in 1946, Lynch is a filmmaker, musician and artist. He wrote, produced and directed his first full-length feature film, “Eraserhead,” in 1977. With editing, scoring and sound design also led by Lynch, the film continues to draw a large cult following.
Studi is a Cherokee-American actor who has appeared in more than 30 films, becoming known for portraying strong Native American characters with poignancy and authenticity.
In 1976, Wertmüller became the first woman to receive an Academy Award nomination for Directing when she received both Directing and Original Screenplay nominations for “Seven Beauties.” The Honorary Award, an Oscar statuette, is given “to honor extraordinary distinction in lifetime achievement, exceptional contributions to the state of motion picture arts and sciences, or for outstanding service to the Academy.”
The Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, also an Oscar statuette, is given “to an individual in the motion picture arts and sciences whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry.”