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Morgan Freeman honored with AFI Life Achievement Award

Morgan Freeman

Morgan Freeman accepted the American Film Institute's 39th Life Achievement Award on a Sony Studios sound stage in Culver City on Thursday night, basking in 3 1/2 hours of film clips and tributes from Clint Eastwood, Tim Robbins, Forest Whitaker, Garth Brooks, Betty White and more.

"I'm proud to be an actor, although for this one night, you've made me feel like a star," Freeman said.

The AFI celebration included clips of Freeman's legendary films and early performances interspersed with recorded segments of Freeman and other actors and filmmakers reflecting on his career. And yes, his singing and dancing on public TV's '70s kids show "The Electric Company" was included.

Freeman blew Robbins a kiss when "The Shawshank Redemption" star said, "It was an honor being locked up with you, Morgan."

Betty White at the Morgan Freeman AFI Life Achievement tribute Also on hand at the star-studded event, to name a few (and only a few): Helen Mirren, Samuel L. Jackson, Matthew McConaughey, Cuba Gooding Jr., Cary Elwes, Djimon Honsou, Kimora Lee Simmons and film critic Leonard Maltin. Click the pics to see more photos from the AFI red carpet.

"This is easy to take but hard to believe. Where I come from in Mississippi, they call this walking in high cotton," he said. "For me, heaven has always been about acting in the movies."

Last year's winner was Mike Nichols. The AFI ceremony will air as a special on TV Land on June 19.

RELATED:

Morgan Freeman dead? No, he's not -- and CNN is looking into it

Hollywood's A-List turns out to celebrate Mike Nichols at annual AFI tribute

'RED' premiere: Willis, Malkovich, Morgan Freeman make for an extremely dangerous red carpet

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Top photo: Clint Eastwood, left, Sidney Poitier and Morgan Freeman at the AFI Life Achievement Award tribute to Freeman in Culver City on June 9, 2011. Credit: Christopher Polk/Getty Images.

Right photo: Betty White at the event honoring Morgan Freeman. Credit: Christopher Polk/Getty Images.



Marion Cotillard, Joseph Gordon-Levitt cast in 'The Dark Knight Rises'

'Inception's' Marion Cotillard and Joseph Gordon-Levitt cast in 'The Dark Knight Rises'

This post has been corrected. Please see the note below for details.

"The Dark Knight Rises" — or what might be called "Inception" lite — has found itself a boardwoman and a cop in Marion Cotillard and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

The actors who previously teamed with "Dark Knight" director Christopher Nolan are joining him again for the newest Batman film — the final chapter in the trilogy.  

Cotillard, who won the lead actress Oscar in 2007 for "La Vie en Rose," will play Miranda Tate, a member of the Wayne Enterprises board. Tate is "eager to help a still-grieving Bruce Wayne resume his father's philanthropic endeavors for Gotham," according to Variety.

Gordon-Levitt will join Gotham City's rank-and-file police force as John Blake, "a Gotham City beat cop assigned to special duty under the command of Commissioner Gordon." He was nominated for a Golden Globe in 2009 for his starring role in "(500) Days of Summer."

Continue reading »

Morgan Freeman dead? No, he's not -- and CNN is looking into it

Morgan Freeman dead CNN tweet "Morgan Freeman dead" is, well, a lie.

A fraudulent tweet reading "Breaking News: actor Morgan Freeman has died in his Burbank home," purportedly sent by CNN, was propagated Thursday afternoon, eventually eliciting a response from CNN denying it was the source of the misinformation.

"CNN did not report Morgan Freeman death. Rumor is false. CNN will aggressively investigate this hoax," the network said around 3 p.m. PST.

Freeman, who's also been the target of a "Dude has a fake hand!" hoax, joins Bill Cosby, Russell Crowe, Betty White, Gordon Lightfoot and more in the ranks of the walking undead.

RELATED:

Morgan Freeman's hand still not fake -- chill, people, OK?

Betty White is just fine -- though one hoaxer better lie low for a while

Bill Cosby is not dead -- and he's not pleased about a fourth death hoax

Russell Crowe is alive and well and added to our celebrity death hoax gallery

Gordon Lightfoot's death hoax: a post-game wrap-up, with an apology to Twitter

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Image credit: Twitter


'RED' premiere: Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Morgan Freeman make for an extremely dangerous red carpet

Stallone-and-willis

Bruce Willis, John Malkovich and Morgan Freeman led a not-exactly-undercover assault on the red carpet outside Grauman's Chinese Theatre for the premiere of "RED" on Monday in Hollywood.

RED-gallery-refer "RED," incidentally, is short for "retired, extremely dangerous," and the film is an action comedy about former CIA black-ops types based on a darker graphic novel.

Other faces from the cast included Mary-Louise Parker, Richard Dreyfuss and Ernest Borgnine, one of whom plays Willis' love interest in the action comedy.

(No, it's not Borgnine -- though clicking on the pic of him and wife Tova at right will launch a gallery of red carpet arrivals.)

Rumer Willis and her dad's real life love interest, wife Emma Heming, made the scene, as well as Willis' "The Expendables" costar Sylvester Stallone with wife Jennifer Flavin, Jodie Foster, 50 Cent (that's Mr. Cent to you), "Weird Al" Yankovich, "Twilight" cutie BooBoo Stewart with sister Fievel Stewart, and Taylor Hackford, whose MIA wife Helen Mirren is cast in "RED" as "the best wetworks asset in the business."

An after-party was held at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. "RED" opens Friday in U.S. theaters.

-- Christie D'Zurilla

[For the record, 4:47 p.m.: An earlier version of this post gave Frank Moses credit as author of the graphic novel. Moses is in fact the novel's main character, played in the film version by Willis. Warren Ellis and Cully Hamner created the novel. The Ministry is considering sticking to its old "Archie and Veronica" comic books from now on.]

Photos: (Top) Sylvester Stallone, left, hit the red carpet with "RED" star Bruce Willis at Grauman's Chinese Theater on Monday. Credit: Mario Anzuoni / Reuters.  (Bottom)  Second photo: Tova and Ernest Borgnine arrive at the "RED" premiere. Credit: Frazer Harrison / Getty Images

Related dispatches -- with photo galleries -- from the Ministry of Gossip:

'Hereafter' premiere: Luciana Barroso glows with hubby Matt Damon on the red carpet

'Fair Game' premiere: Spying on Naomi Watts and Valerie Plame Wilson in New York

'Conviction' premiere: Hilary Swank, Minnie Driver and the real women who inspired their characters


Sean Penn does Robert De Niro proud at AARP's Movies for Grownups Awards

Sean penn robert de niro2 Though he hasn't had the rosiest past, loose cannon Sean Penn got a huge pat on the back from his friend Robert De Niro last night.

Penn was tapped to present De Niro with the lifetime achievement award at AARP The Magazine's Movies for Grownups Awards for 2010. 

"Who knew that such a bad boy would grow up to be such a good man?" De Niro said of Penn, who blushed.

At the Regent Beverly Wilshire hotel Tuesday night for the awards, I spotted Penn several times working on his introduction speech, at one point on his knees at a banquet table scribbling notes. In his intro, Penn talked about the first time he met the acting legend.

At New York's Odeon, they were both at a dinner that ended in a screaming match. Penn stormed away from the table (which also held Joe Pesci) and threw all the cash he had at De Niro. In a cab en route to his "Hell's Kitchen cubicle," Penn realized he had empty pockets.

Continue reading »

Brangelina and Maddox hit the 'Invictus' premiere

Brange Another chapter in the childhood you didn't have -- little Maddox Jolie-Pitt got to spend a movie night with his parents, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, without the rest of his siblings around.

It was the premiere of "Invictus," where the family mingled with Clint Eastwood, Matt Damon and Morgan Freeman.

Jolie looked earthy and gorgeous in a black pantsuit and a printed wrap, chatting with guests at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences in Beverly Hills, at one point dipping out of the theater with a team of three to the powder room.

After the screening, the crowd shuffled to the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel for an after party with the likes of Freeman and "Trucker" actress Michelle Monaghan.

Orlando Bloom showed to support the Clint Eastwood-directed film, in which Freeman gives an award-winning turn as South African leader Nelson Mandela.

Sans his model girlfriend, Miranda Kerr, Bloom made no fuss about an entrance. The actor parked his motorcycle on the street and slipped in through a side door.

More photos from the "Invictus" premiere, as well as links to all things Morgan and Angelina, await after the jump!

--Matt Donnelly

Photo: Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie and their son Maddox Jolie-Pitt say cheese at the Los Angeles premiere of "Invictus." Credit: Kevin Winter / Getty Images.

Continue reading »

Morgan Freeman's hand still not fake -- chill, people, OK?

Morgan So last year after a serious car accident, Morgan Freeman had surgery on his left arm, elbow and shoulder -- and now while he's out doing press for "Invictus," people aren't seeing the hand on that arm do very much at all.

And he's wearing one glove.  Which nobody's ever done before

Especially after surgery.

So that must mean it's a fake hand?

Funny -- in January, he told Access Hollywood that his hand was still paralyzed "until the nerves get down there" after all that damage.

Then people ran this drill again in February after the Grammy Awards. And the rumor keeps popping up on discussion boards Internet-wide, mostly accompanied by words we can't repeat and astute observations about human nature.

Patience, people, patience.

And don't believe everything you read on the Interwebs, OK? Though most of this next part is true:

Hugh Laurie's hand was following the Ministry's personal Twitter feed for a stretch earlier this year, but it seems to have lost interest and hasn't tweeted much lately.

We were crushed, but perhaps Hugh's hand is hanging out with Morgan's now, and the two just want some privacy?

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Morgan Freeman with both his hands at a salute to Clint Eastwood on Tuesday in New York. Credit: Stephen Lovekin / Getty Images.


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