Special Broadcast to Premiere Sat., June 14, at 9 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. (ET/PT) on TNT;
With Encore on TCM Slated for Fri., Aug. 1, as part of an All-Night Tribute to Fonda
Actor, producer, activist and author Jane Fonda was honored with the 42nd annual AFI Life Achievement Award – the highest honor for a career in film – in an evening filled with surprise and sentiment. Many of Hollywood's most revered artists, executives and philanthropists turned out to pay tribute to one of America's most cherished artists. The black-tie gala was taped last night, June 5, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles and will air on Saturday, June 14, at 9 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. (ET/PT) on TNT and encore Friday, Aug. 1, at 8 p.m. (ET) on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) as part of an all-night tribute to Fonda.
Among the more than 1,000 guests gathered for Fonda were Rosanna Arquette, Diego Boneta, Luke Bracey, Mel Brooks, Sandra Bullock, Clive Davis, Rosario Dawson, Cameron Diaz, Eve Ensler, Sally Field, Morgan Freeman, Troy Garity, Melanie Griffith, Kathryn Hahn, Chelsea Handler, Marcia Gay Harden, Felicity Huffman, Kevin Huvane, Catherine Keener, Ron Kovic, Diane Lane, Eva Longoria, William H. Macy, Samantha Mathis, Mary McCormack, Dylan McDermott, Chris Messina, Emily Mortimer, Alison Pill, Cleo Pires, David O. Russell, Carol Bayer Sager, Corey Stoll, Meryl Streep, Wanda Sykes, Linda Bloodworth Thomason, Lily Tomlin, Michael Vartan, Sam Waterston, Catherine Zeta Jones and more.
The tribute was built upon the depth of Fonda's career as an actor, producer, feminist, activist and author. In the tradition of past AFI tributes, the details of the program were held as a surprise to the honoree, making this event one of the most beloved experiences in the film community. The night reflected Fonda's roots in a Hollywood dynasty, bringing her full circle from her attendance at her father's celebration at the 6th AFI Lifetime Achievement Award in 1978.
Following welcoming remarks from Sir Howard Stringer, Chair of the AFI Board of Trustees, and Bob Gazzale, AFI President and CEO, producer Anne Garefino (South Park, AFI class of 1988) received the 2014 Franklin J. Schaffner Alumni Medal for her commitment to excellence in entertainment.
The tribute show opened with a surprise appearance by AFI Life Achievement Award recipient Mel Brooks (2013), who offered Fonda humorous advice on the evening ahead. Fonda's family, friends and collaborators who spoke included Sandra Bullock, Cameron Diaz, Sally Field, Peter Fonda, Troy Garity, Eva Longoria, Meryl Streep, Lily Tomlin and in costume as Barbarella, Wanda Sykes. Jeff Daniels performed a comedic song he composed in her honor titled "Abs, Buns and Thighs."
U.S. military veteran Ron Kovic, Fonda's inspiration for making Coming Home (1978), remarked on their shared activism. A video tribute titled "A Hymn to Her," written by playwright Eve Ensler, showcased segments from Annette Bening, Cate Blanchett, Jennifer Lopez, Vanessa Redgrave, Robert Redford and past AFI Life Achievement Award honorees Robert De Niro (2003) and Morgan Freeman (2011). Also part of a film family legacy, Michael Douglas (AFI Life Achievement Award honoree 2009) presented the 42nd AFI Life Achievement Award to Fonda.
Proceeds from the gala event directly support the Institute's national education programs and the preservation of American film heritage. Sponsors of the 2014 AFI Life Achievement Award tribute to Jane Fonda include American Airlines, the official airline of the American Film Institute; Audi of America; Citibank; Deloitte Consulting LLP; Stella Artois; and Wells Fargo.
The highest honor given for a career in film, the AFI Life Achievement Award was established by the AFI Board of Trustees on Feb. 26, 1973. It is presented to a single honoree each year based on the following criteria as mandated through a resolution passed by the AFI Board of Trustees: "The recipient should be one whose talent has in a fundamental way advanced the film art; whose accomplishment has been acknowledged by scholars, critics, professional peers and the general public; and whose work has stood the test of time."
AFI is America’s promise to preserve the history of the motion picture, to honor the artists and their work and to educate the next generation of storytellers. AFI programs include the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and AFI Archive, which preserve film heritage for future generations; the AFI Life Achievement Award – the highest honor for a career in film – now in its 42nd year; AFI Awards, honoring the most outstanding motion pictures and television programs of the year; AFI’s 100 Years…100 Movies television events and movie reference lists, which have introduced and reintroduced classic American movies to millions of film lovers; year-round and special event exhibition through AFI Fest presented by Audi, AFI Docs and the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center; and educating the next generation of storytellers at the world renowned AFI Conservatory, recognized for the quality of its instructors and speakers and its notable alumni.