People Don’t Take It Seriously

People have a hard time taking awards shows and Hollywood in general seriously when the give lifetime achievement awards to 30 year olds.

On the heels of an Oscar nomination, “The Aviator” star Leonardo DiCaprio wrapped a high-flying week by accepting the Platinum Award from the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

The award, created to commemorate the festival’s 20th anniversary, was given Sunday night in recognition of the actor’s “exceptional career,” festival director Roger Durling said.

DiCaprio’s arrival elicited screams from hundreds of fans — a festival first, Durling said. Being greeted in such a way “is kind of like an out-of-body experience,” DiCaprio, who plays Howard Hughes in the movie, told Associated Press Television News.

“It’s a lifetime achievement award, which is completely and utterly surreal, given I’m only 30 years old,” he continued, with a laugh. “But, you know, what has it been? Almost 17 years now. I’ve done quite a few films. But what’s really exciting, for me, is that this is what I really love doing. It’s what I want to do for the rest of my life.”

My suspicion is they created the award and gave it to DiCaprio to drum up some positive press about the film festival. It’s like campaigns — name a “co-chair” and get good PR, though the title “co-chair” is meaningless in most cases.

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Erick Erickson

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