I am having my assistant write this letter because I am incredibly nervous and don’t have anyone out here I can turn to for help. Hollywood isn’t made up of friends and confidantes…it’s just coworkers, people you tolerate, and backstabbers who either want your job, or something from you.
I love the place, but it’s not exactly the best set up for seeking out advice.
I am nominated for an Academy Award, and I am unbelievably anxious about having to give an acceptance speech. It’s not like working on a movie where the words are all written out for me, and there are only a dozen or so people around to watch me.
This is my own words, on live TV, with millions of people watching, and a room full of my peers staring up at me and waiting for me to embarrass myself.
If a miracle occurs and I actually win, what do I say? How do I get through that acceptance speech without making an ass of myself?
I don’t even know how to thank you for your help with this. I’m a lost cause…
Anonymous in Hollywood
Congratulations on your nomination! You must be thrilled. Focus on that and try to give as little thought to your acceptance speech as possible. Why allow anxiety to ruin what should be one of the most exciting nights of your life?
I am a huge fan of the Academy Awards, and have watched the show religiously since I was knee high to a Best Boy. So I’ve seen my share of acceptance speeches.
What you need to remember is that if you are lucky enough to hear your name announced as the person to whom the Oscar goes, you are not only the owner of a shiny gold statue, but you have also won a Get Out Of Jail Free card.
You won an Oscar! The world is your oyster. You are the cream of the crop. You can do or say anything, and all people will remember is that you were the one holding the award that means you are the best in your business.
Ramble on all you want, kiss the Oscar, kiss the presenter, do one armed push ups. No one really cares. It is your moment and you decide what happens.
I do advise you, however, to thank your significant other. That person is the only one who really cares what you say once you get up on the stage. He or she has stood by you, loved you, supported you, and encouraged you. Your significant other needs to hear his or her name some time during your acceptance speech.
If you forget it, your personal life will become a living hell. It will always be brought up and used against you in future fights. It could lead to a chill in the bedroom and a wild shopping spree that tests the limits of your credit line.
Do anything you want up on that stage as you cradle your Oscar, but make sure to say thank you to the one who loves you.
Good luck tonight!