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After Daniel Day-Lewis accepted the Stanley Kubrick Award for Excellence in Film from his Lincoln director Steven Spielberg at the British Academy of Film and Television Arts’ Britannia Awards on Wednesday at the Beverly Hilton, he got a standing ovation and then fetched even louder applause with the best joke of the night: a ribbing of Clint Eastwood‘s performance at the Republican National Convention.
“Please excuse me if I’m a little bit groggy,” he told the crowd, including fellow Britannia Award winners Quentin Tarantino, Daniel Craig, Trey Parker, Matt Stone and Sims creator Will Wright. “I was up ’till probably 2 in the morning last night watching CNN.” In a mock-effusive voice, he added, “I have to say that I’m so extremely grateful and glad that — taking time out of his very busy schedule, the recently re-elected president of this country has made it here.” He gestured to the empty chair beside him on the stage, and the crowd roared.
“I know as an Englishman it’s absolutely none of my business,” said Day-Lewis to the invisible Obama, “but I’m just so very grateful it was you!”
The actor clarified that it was professional jealousy that inspired his Eastwood parody, which killed. “I love Clint Eastwood. This is no satirical comment on his politics or anything else. But I have to say, when I saw him talking to a chair in front of a roomful of strangers, I thought, ‘I’ve got to try that.’ That’s a challenge. I didn’t pull it off quite as well as him, but anyhow, I’ve got some way to go.”
BBC America will air the Britannia Awards Sunday November 11 at 8 pm ET.
The winners of the 2012 Britannia Awards are:
Daniel Craig, Britannia Award for British Artist of the Year
Daniel Day-Lewis, Stanley Kubrick Brittania Award for Excellence in Film
Trey Parker and Matt Stone, Charlie Chaplin Britannia Award for Excellence in Comedy
Quentin Tarantino, John Schlesinger Britannia Award for Excellence in Directing
Will Wright, Albert R. Broccoli Britannia Award for Worldwide Contribution to Comedy
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