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Oscars 2013: Memorable speeches given by Hudson Valley celebs
The Hudson Valley has produced a number Academy Award winners over the decades, and this year a few more could join that list, with locals including Mount Vernon’s Denzel Washington and Hastings’ Benh Zeitlin up for major awards.
As we all know, every winner of a golden statuette gives an acceptance speech in front of a worldwide audience. Although some winners choose to rattle off a list of names from a prewritten speech, others express themselves in a more heartfelt and memorable way.
With Sunday's show just days away, here’s a look back at the some of the best Oscar speeches given by Hudson Valley celebrities.
Oscar winners from the Hudson Valley
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| Memorable Oscar looks worn by local celebs
NOMINEES: Oscars nominations 2013 | Hudson Valley celebs react to Oscar nominations | Benh Zeitlin on directing 'Beasts,' Oscar nods
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Denzel Washington, best actor for "Training Day" (2001)
The Mount Vernon actor was understandably emotional when receiving his second Academy Award, given that his acting idol, former Pleasantville resident Sidney Poitier, received an honorary Oscar earlier that night.
"Forty years I’ve been chasing Sidney,” he said in his speech. “They finally give it to me, [and] what do they do? They give it to him the same night!”
"I’ll always be chasing you, Sidney," Washington continued. "I’ll always be following in your footsteps. There’s nothing I would rather do, sir. Nothing I would rather do. God bless you."
The actor also gave a shout-out to his longtime agent, the late Ed Limato, whom he referred to as his “hometown boy from Mount Vernon.”
2. Angelina Jolie, best supporting actress for "Girl Interrupted" (1999)
This clip offers a nostalgic look back at Jolie, who spent part of her childhood in Palisades before she became half of a Hollywood supercouple. Most people remember the actress' speech for her unusual shout-out to sibling James Haven -- “I’m so in love with my brother right now” -- as well as her Morticia Addams-esque look.
But she also expressed genuine (and less icky) gratitude when thanking her parents, including telling her father, Yonkers native and fellow Oscar winner Jon Voight, “You’re a great actor but you’re a better father.”
3. James Earl Jones, honorary Oscar (2011)
Pawling resident James Earl Jones was presented his award while in London after a theater performance of "Driving Miss Daisy,” with fellow Oscar winners Vanessa Redgrave (his “Daisy” co-star) and Ben Kingsley on hand to honor him.
The highlight of Jones’ very funny speech, a portion of which aired during the show, came when he reflected on his decades-long career in self-deprecating fashion.
“You cannot be a cinema actor, and conduct your career like I’ve done and not end up in some of the worst movies ever committed to celluloid,” Jones said, eliciting laughs from the audience. “But I want to tell you something: I still cherish them, but I refuse to name them. You'll just have to Google, my friends, because the night belongs to Oscar.”
What are your favorite Oscar speeches, and which celebrities do you hope will win Oscars at this year’s show? Let us know in the comments!