For teaching us that a shoe doesn’t belong on your head, for her transformations into white witches and vampires, and for reminding the world that we NEED to talk about Kevin, Tilda Swinton was awarded a Golden Lion For Lifetime Achievement at the Venice International Film Festival on Wednesday. The Oscar-winning actress, known for playing androgynous and often-eccentric characters, began her acceptance speech by admitting that she’s been wondering two things: “One, how much exactly cinema means to me. Two, how to be able to accept this overwhelming honor with a straight face.”
Swinton called cinema her “happy place, my true motherland. Its fellowship is my heart’s family tree. The names on the list of those awarded this honor, meanwhile, they are the names of my masters. They’re the elders of my tribe. The poets of the language I love above others. I sing their songs in the bath. I’m the punk kid film nut hitching a ride to the station to get to the foothills of the heights of their achievements.” Acknowledging the sincere absurdity of talking about baths and punks and motherlands, she jokingly added, “By the way, I am only just beginning.”
You can read much of her speech here, but I’m going to cut to the end, where Swinton paid tribute to her Marvel Cinematic Universe co-star Chadwick Boseman, who died from colon cancer last week. “The magic carpet is flying still and ever shall be — the best possible personal protective equipment for the soul. Viva Venezia. Cinema cinema cinema. Wakanda Forever,” she said, in reference to the salute from Black Panther.
As seen here:
Congratulations to Tilda Swinton, who will soon appear in Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio as The Fairy with Turquoise Hair. Sounds about right.