On hand to receive Honorary Oscars were producer Roger Corman, cinematographer Gordon Willis and thesp Lauren Bacall. John Calley, the producer and former Sony and Warner Bros. honcho, was saluted as the 35th recipient of the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award, but he was too ill to attend. In his place, a lineup of seven previous Thalberg winners took the stage with Tom Hanks to salute Calley, with Steven Spielberg accepting on Calley's behalf.
The event delivered on AMPAS prexy Tom Sherak's promise to mix old Hollywood and new. The celebrity-studded crowd featured showbiz royalty, from the honorees to presenters Warren Beatty, Anjelica Huston, Quentin Tarantino and Jeff Bridges, previous Oscar winners such as Marisa Tomei, alongside "Precious" star Gabourey Sidibe.