As Julie Andrews’ character says in “The Princess Diaries” sequel: “A queen is never late. Everyone else is simply early.”
So it’s only fitting that the American Film Institute’s annual Life Achievement Award gala, set later this year to honor Andrews, will take place nearly a year-and-a-half after it was originally scheduled.
The event was initially set for April 2020, but it was postponed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. It will now be held on Nov. 11 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. The ceremony will air on TNT, with encore presentations on Turner Classic Movies, at a later date.
“Julie Andrews has lifted the spirits of the world for generations,” said Bob Gazzale, AFI president and CEO. “Now, more than ever, AFI looks forward to gathering the globe to celebrate the many gifts and joy she has given us — proving her, of course, ‘practically perfect in every way.’”
In its 48th iteration, the AFI Live Achievement gala will pay tribute to the actor whose seven-decade film career includes classics like “Mary Poppins,” “The Sound of Music” and “My Fair Lady,” as well as contemporary favorites such as “The Princess Diaries,” “Shrek” and “Eloise at the Plaza.”
Though the list of presenters hasn’t been announced, the event’s organizers routinely gather A-list friends and collaborators to help toast the night’s guest of honor. In 2019, Julia Roberts, Chadwick Boseman and Jamie Foxx rhapsodized about the magic of Denzel Washington, while the year prior Meryl Streep, Morgan Freeman, Al Pacino and Reese Witherspoon spoke about the kooky charm of Diane Keaton. Other honorees have included George Clooney, John Williams and Freeman.
Honorees are chosen by the AFI Board of Trustees, who seek to select someone who fits the following mandate: “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.”
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