Barbra Streisand Receives Standing Ovation at SAG Awards, Thanks Her Fellow Actors and Directors ‘For Giving Me So Much Joy’

Rexa Vella

Barbra Streisand Receives Standing Ovation at SAG Awards, Thanks Her Fellow Actors and Directors ‘For Giving Me So Much Joy’

The Oscar heavyweight, Grammy-winning great and all-around icon, Barbra Streisand was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 30th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

“This is such a wonderful award to get because you know in advance you’re going to get it. You don’t have to sit there in squirm… And if you don’t have to put on such a happy face, ‘I’m so happy to lose!’ Anyway, you all know what I mean,” the legend joked.

Pivoting to more serious matters, Streisand revealed that she was proud to be a SAG-AFTRA member for over 60 years, “I can’t believe it. I remember dreaming of being an actress as a teenager, sitting in my bed in Brooklyn with a pint of coffee ice cream and a movie magazine.”

But in the end, Streisand dedicated her lifetime achievement speech to the actors among her in the auditorium. “And most of all, I want to thank you for giving me so much joy, just watching all of you on the screen,” she said while clapping out to the crowd.

The audience of Hollywood elite, including an enraptured Anne Hathaway, stood in awe as Streisand recalled watching “the most beautiful actor” and her “first crush” Marlon Brando in the 1954 “Guys and Dolls.” “He was so real, so believable,” she said. “And I wanted to be the one he fell in love with, not Jean Simmons.”

Longtime friend, Jennifer Aniston, presented Streisand with her award in front of the star-studded room. “Barbara, that’s all you have to say and you know,” the “Friends” star said. “That face, that voice, that talent. It is a once-in-a-lifetime talent and how lucky that it is in our lifetime.” Aniston pointed out that perhaps this whole night was fated, as the Shrine was the home of Streisand’s first major concert in 1963, “on this very stage right here.” 

Bradley Cooper, who played Jackson Maine in the 2018 remake of “A Star is Born,” surprised the audience with an additional tribute calling her a “true auteur.”

SAG-AFTRA picks the actor to recognize by looking for a member who holds the “finest ideals of the acting profession.” The award began in 1962 and was first bestowed upon Eddie Cantor. Pasts recipients include Katharine Hepburn, George Burns, Angela Lansbury, Elizabeth Taylor, Brock Peters, Betty White, James Earl Jones, Alan Alda, and Helen Mirren. Last year the honor went to Sally Field.

After announcing Streisand’s honor, SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher called the creator an, “icon and unparalleled talent, a force of nature who has seamlessly woven her brilliance through the fabric of our industry. From her earliest days captivating audiences on Broadway to her unforgettable roles in cinematic classics like ‘Funny Girl,’ ‘The Way We Were,’ and ‘A Star Is Born,’ Barbra’s ability to inhabit her characters with authenticity is nothing short of extraordinary… We celebrate Barbra Streisand not just for her achievements but for the enduring legacy she has carved.”

Streisand boasts a remarkable accolade collection, having secured two Academy Awards, ten Grammys, five Emmy Awards, three Peabody Awards, and a Tony Award. Furthermore, Streisand’s directorial ventures, such as “Yentl,” “The Prince of Tides,” and “The Mirror Has Two Faces,” all garnered Academy Award nominations. However she’s never been nominated for directing, a fact Oscar-host Billy Crystal called out in his opening monologue at the 1992 telecast after “The Prince of Tides” took home seven nominations but none for director.

Streisand also recently released a 997-page memoir, “My Name is Barbra,” which is a 48-hour-long audiobook. Which the diva herself narrated, naturally.

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