Comic book guru Stan Lee has received the Lifetime Achievement Award given at the 15th annual Savannah Film Festival for his co-creation of Spider-Man, Iron Man, the Incredible Hulk, the Avengers and the Fantastic Four.
Accepting the award, Lee cheekily noted, “First of all, I want to thank you for your taste, your judgment, your acumen in deciding to award this to me. I’ve heard so many acceptance speeches in my life, and I’ve made so many acceptance speeches, that I just made up my mind that I wasn’t going to do the usual ‘thank you very much, I don’t deserve it but I’m very grateful.’ I deserve it 100 percent.”
“I’ve never been here before and it’s the greatest city, it’s the most beautiful city. Everyone in Savannah that I’ve met seems to be interested in art, literature, creative things. It has been such a joy talking to the people here,” said Lee. “Obviously, I have to close with one important message. You may have heard it before, but it doesn’t matter, it has to be said, and I don’t want you to hold it against me, but here we go, excelsior!”
The festival also honoured actors Matt Dillon (“Crash”) and Diane Lane (“Unfaithful”) with Outstanding Achievement in Cinema Awards; and actress Michelle Monaghan (“Gone Baby Gone”) with a Spotlight Award. On opening night, Actor John Goodman (“Flight”) received an Outstanding Achievement Award; screenwriter John Gatins (“Flight”) received a Spotlight Award; and screenwriter Geoffrey Fletcher (“Violet & Daisy”) received a SCAD Cinevation Award, which is given for imagination, inspiration and innovation in cinema
In prior years, many of the screenings at the festival have gone on to win Academy Award nominations. The festival has U.S-premiered two Pedro Almodovar films as well as films by Robert Redford and Woody Allen. Special gala screenings, which were shown before their national release, include “127 Hours,” “Amelie,” “Babel,” “Black Swan,” “Precious: Based on the novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire,” “Sideways,” “Slumdog Millionaire,” “The Artist,” “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly,” “The Wrestler” and “Up in the Air.”