O’Toole, nominated seven times for best actor but never the recipient, to get the hardware:
- “O’Toole’s performances have ignited the screen for more than four decades,” Frank Pierson, president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, said Friday in announcing the award.
It will be presented during the 75th annual Academy Awards ceremony March 23 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Its citation will read: “Peter O’Toole – whose remarkable talents have provided cinema history with some of its most memorable characters.”
O’Toole, 70, made his stage debut at 17 before attending the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. He made his film debut 10 years later with a bit part in the 1959 film “The Savage Innocents.”
The Irish-born actor shot to international fame three years later portraying legendary British adventurer T.E. Lawrence in David Lean’s landmark film “Lawrence of Arabia.” The performance brought him the first of his seven best actor Oscar nominations.
The others were for “Becket” (1964), “The Lion in Winter” (1968), “Goodbye, Mr. Chips” (1969), “The Ruling Class” (1972), “The Stunt Man” (1980) and “My Favorite Year” (1982). [AP]
These honorary awards may be weak beer to some, but they serve the same purpose as the Veterans Committee for the baseball Hall of Fame, catching people whose peg just didn’t quite fit the standard hole.