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Jennifer Coolidge accepted the Comedic Genius Award during the 2023 MTV Movie & TV Awards on Sunday.
After showing a montage of clips from some of the actress’ most iconic roles, Coolidge took to the screen in a pretaped video to show her appreciation, saying, “Thank you, MTV. Thank you for honoring me with this incredible Comedic Genius Award. Wow. Wow.”
She said the award was even more special because she gets to “be in the club” with previous Comedic Genius Award recipients, including Jack Black, Sacha Baron Cohen, Melissa McCarthy, Kevin Hart and Will Ferrell.
Coolidge added that one of the reasons she’s so thrilled about the honor is because “it’s just ironic that this award would be made of my favorite food, popcorn.”
Before finishing her acceptance speech, The White Lotus actress had some thoughts on the Writers Guild of America strike: “Almost all great comedy starts with great writers and I just think that, you know, as a proud member of [SAG-AFTRA], I stand here before you tonight, side by side with my sisters and brothers from the WGA that are fighting right now, fighting for the rights of artists everywhere.”
She continued, “I think of the words of Shakespeare where he once said, ‘The play is the thing.’ Well, I don’t wanna put words in his mouth or anything, but I think what he really meant was, it’s everything.”
Later during the ceremony, the actress also won the award for most frightened performance for her role in The White Lotus.
Coolidge, a beloved actress who has captivated audiences throughout her decades-long career, has a wide-ranging list of credits, including The White Lotus, American Pie, The Watcher, Shotgun Wedding, We Have a Ghost, Legally Blonde, A Cinderella Story, Promising Young Woman, Best in Show, A Mighty Wind and For Your Consideration. She has also won an Emmy, Golden Globe, two Critics Choice Awards and a SAG Award for her role as Tanya on the HBO hit White Lotus.
The 2023 MTV Movie & TV Awards pivoted from a live ceremony to a pre-taped show Sunday. The changes came hours after the Writers Guild said it had planned to picket outside of the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, where the awards had been scheduled to be presented in front of a live audience.
Writers have been on strike since May 2 after negotiations with studios and streamers collapsed the previous night. Drew Barrymore was also initially set to host the awards ceremony, but dropped out last week, saying she was doing so in solidarity with the WGA strike.
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