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Michelle Williams Will be Feted at Irish in Film Event

Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy

The "My Week With Marilyn" star is selected as first "honorary Irishwoman" for the intimate Feb. 23 celebration.

Michelle Williams will be among those saluted at the seventh annual Oscar Wilde: Honoring the Irish in Film awards-season event, it was announced Friday.

The My Week With Marilyn star will be feted on Feb. 23 during the intimate bash, once again held on the Thursday night before the Academy Awards. For the first time, it takes place at Bad Robot, J.J. Abrams’ production company in Santa Monica.

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The nonprofit US-Ireland Alliance created the event to recognize the contributions of the Irish in film and to allow for people in the creative industries in the U.S. and Ireland to meet once a year.

The Alliance has had fun in recent years by bequeathing honorary Irish awards on folks who aren’t of Irish ancestry. Williams, who is of Norwegian descent, is the first woman to be selected; the previous male recipients were Paul Rudd, Abrams and James L. Brooks.

Williams this week received SAG and Golden Globe nominations for best actress for her turn of Marilyn Monroe in The Weinstein Co. film. She’s also a strong candidate to win an Oscar three days after the Oscar Wilde event.

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Trina Vargo, the Washington-based president of the US-Ireland Alliance, noted that Monroe appears to have had some Irish ancestry. Her mother’s last name was Hogan, the Irish word for young. The family line goes back to Kentucky, and references can be found suggesting those ancestors were in the U.S. at least as far back as the 1700s, with references to their forebears being from the Emerald Isle.

Williams’ agent, CAA’s Hylda Queally, a new member of the US-Ireland Alliance advisory board, was honored at the occasion in 2009. Other recipients of Oscar Wilde Awards include casting agents Ros and John Hubbard, cinematographer Seamus McGarvey, Sarah Bolger, Saoirse Ronan, Brendan Gleeson, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Fiona Shaw, Colm Meaney, Van Morrison, Bill Monahan, Terry George, Neil Jordan, Jim Sheridan, composer David Holmes and late THR writer Steve Brennan.

Additional honorees will be announced soon.