Some would believe the most prestigious award someone in cinema can receive is an Academy Award. You wouldn't be entirely wrong if you believed that, but in actual fact, the highest honor in film-making are the Honorary Oscars, given to a few individuals each November. This year, three amazing choices have been made for these Oscars, and the individuals receiving the award have made tremendous contributions to cinema.
First up is Spike Lee. Lee is one of the most visionary film directors of all time, and his cinematic output is absolutely amazing - Do the Right Thing, Jungle Fever, Malcolm X and Red Hook Summer are just a few brilliant films that Lee has directed. One of the most critically acclaimed filmmakers of all time, Lee is a welcome addition to those who have received the award in the past. Spike has been previously nominated for two Academy Awards, for Best Original Screenplay in 1990 for Do the Right Thing and for Best Documentary Feature for 4 Little Girls in 1998.
Many people today aren't aware of Gena Rowlands, which is a shame because she is one of the most iconic and diverse actresses to ever live. Rowlands was known for her powerful performances in films directed by her late husband, John Cassavettes (a film legend in his own right), such as Gloria and A Woman Under the Influence. These days, Gena is an elder stateswoman of cinema, but she is still very active, and has continued to act to this day. Gena has been nominated for two Academy Awards for Best Actress, in 1975 for A Woman Under the Influence and in 1981 for Gloria.
Finally, the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, which is given to someone in the film industry who has gone the extra mile to improve the lives of other people and contributed their time relentlessly to helping charities around the world. The recipient of this years' award is Hollywood legend Debbie Reynolds. Reynolds is known for her wonderful charity work, including LGBT causes, The Thalians (a organization that gives relief to people with mental disorders) and various other charities.
Lee, Rowlands and Reynolds will be receiving their awards in a prestigious gala in November.