Things your publicist says not to do during an acceptance speech

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Following Jodie Foster's performance at the Golden Globes (to the dismay of her publicist, but to our delight), we round up a few of the 'what not to do' rules

“While I'm here being all confessional, I guess I have a sudden urge to say something that I've never really been able to air in public. So, a declaration that I'm a little nervous about but maybe not quite as nervous as my publicist right now, huh Jennifer?”

Jodie Foster’s acceptance speech at last night’s Golden Globes must surely have struck fear into the heart of her publicist (Read the full transcript here) The actress, who rambled emotionally about her age (“I’m 50! I’m 50!”), cleavage and sexuality ("I already did my big coming out about a thousand years ago in the stone age") was a breath of fresh air during the awards season.

Usually Hollywood’s finest allow the mascara to run just artfully enough not to mar their perfectly made-up faces while waxing breathlessly lyrical about “the studio”, their families and colleagues. In other words they give perfect, media-trained performances adhering to a few carefully laid-out rules drummed into them by their hardworking publicists.

The gushing, name-checking, tear wiping and self-congratulation might be ubiquitous but few stars break the mould, letting it all hang out and revealing themselves to be as fragile, volatile, and susceptible to the bamboozling powers of Champagne and a tight dress/tuxedo, as the rest of us. 

So, in celebration of rare glimpses of reality in Tinseltown, here are some rules (we imagine) your publicist might lay down for celebrities ahead of red carpet appearances. With some noteworthy failures to follow them.

Click here or on "View Images" to launch in pictures

Don’t babble incoherently

Note: Gwyneth Paltrow’s tearful 1999 leading actress Oscars acceptance speech: “I would like to thank my wonderful agent Rick Kurstman who is a beautiful man and a wonderful agent and in his case that is not an oxymoron…I would not have been able to play this role had I not understood love of a tremendous magnitude [in between sobs] and for that I thank my family, my mother Blythe Danner, who I [sob], love more than anything…my earthly guardian angel Mary Whigmore, and especially my father Bruce Paltrow who has surmounted insurmountable obstacles this year.”

Don't lose the ability to speak

Note: The wordless, open-mouthed, shoulder-shaking sobs expressed by Halle Berry as she accepted the Best Actress Oscar for Monster’s Ball (the first black woman to win in that category) will go down in Academy history. She stood for almost a minute on stage at the Samuel Goldwyn Theatre only able to utter wretched cries of “Oh my god” and “sorry” between convulsions.

Don’t declare love for your brother in a way that could be misconstrued as incest

Note: In 2000 (long before the dawn of Brangelina), Angelina Jolie accepted the best actress Oscar for Girl Interrupted with an impassioned speech about her brother Jamie. “I’m in shock. And I’m so in love with my brother right now. He just told me he loves me and I know he’s so happy for me. Thank you for that…Jamie, I have nothing without you. You are the strongest most amazing man I’ve ever known. I love you.” Before going up to accept her gong Jolie gave Jamie a tight hug and a kiss on the lips.

Don’t out anybody else

Note: While accepting an Oscar for Philadelphia Tom Hanks declared that his High School drama teacher was “of the finest gay Americans I have had the good fortune to be associated with”. Despite the lovely sentiment, Hanks’ speech outed a man on national television who up until that point had been, in his professional capacity at least, firmly in the closet.

Don’t have a go at another celebrity

Note: At the 2012 Golden Globes Elton John and Madonna (competing for the Best Original Song gong) used the national press present to swipe at each other. Elton told reporters “Madonna doesn’t have a f****** chance” after which the Material Girl said “damn him” and went on to take the trophy. John’s husband David Furnish continued the spat on Facebook posting: “Madonna for Best Original Song? F*** off!”

Don’t shout “I’m the King of the World wooohooooo!”

Note: Titanic director James Cameron didn’t go in for modesty while picking up his Oscar. He might claim to have been quoting the characters in the film. But holding his arms aloft in excitement and whooping like a hyena he wasn’t commanding particular good acting skills.

Arts and Entertainment
Call The Midwife: Miranda Hart as Chummy

tv Review: Miranda Hart and co deliver the festive goods

Arts and Entertainment
The cast of Downton Abbey in the 2014 Christmas special

tvReview: Older generation get hot under the collar this Christmas

Arts and Entertainment
Dapper Laughs found success through the video app Vine

comedy Erm...he seems to be back

Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)

tvReview: No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Arts and Entertainment
Bruce Forsyth and Tess Daly flanking 'Strictly' winners Flavia Cacace and Louis Smith

tv Gymnast Louis Smith triumphed in the Christmas special

PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Rhys says: 'I'm not playing it for laughs, but I have learnt that if you fall over on stage, people can enjoy that as much as an amazing guitar solo'
musicGruff Rhys on his rock odyssey, and the trouble with independence
Arts and Entertainment
Krysia and Daniel (Hand out press photograph provided by Sally Richardson)
How do today's composers answer the challenge of the classical giant?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
News
Shenaz Treasurywala
film
News
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Jason Watkins as Christopher Jefferies
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Star Wars Director JJ Abrams: key character's names have been revealed
film
Arts and Entertainment
Pharrell Williams won two BBC Music Awards for Best Song and International Artist
music
Arts and Entertainment
Mark, Katie and Sanjay in The Apprentice boardroom
TV
Arts and Entertainment

Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites

Arts and Entertainment
Frances O'Connor and James Nesbitt in 'The Missing'

TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations

Arts and Entertainment
Joey Essex will be hitting the slopes for series two of The Jump

TV

Who is taking the plunge?
Arts and Entertainment
Katy Perry as an Ancient Egyptian princess in her latest music video for 'Dark Horse'

music
Arts and Entertainment
Dame Judi Dench, as M in Skyfall

film
Arts and Entertainment
Morrissey, 1988

TV
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

    Christmas without hope

    Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
    After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

    The 'Black Museum'

    After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
    No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

    No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

    Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
    Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

    Chilly Christmas

    Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
    Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
    Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

    'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

    Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
    Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

    Ed Balls interview

    'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
    He's behind you, dude!

    US stars in UK panto

    From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

    What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
    Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

    Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

    Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
    Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

    Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

    Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
    Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

    Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

    Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
    Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

    Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

    Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
    Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

    Autism-friendly theatre

    Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all