Photo Coverage: Michael Douglas, Catherine Zeta-Jones et al. at Eugene O'Neill Theater Center's Monte Cristo Awards!
Directed by Marc Bruni, the program featured stage acts, video tributes, musical adaptations, and remarks by close friends and colleagues, paying homage to one of America's most iconic film stars. Program guests included Joel Schumacher, Lorne Michaels, performances by Colin Donnell, Laura Osnes, John Tartaglia and Colman Domingo, and messages from Barbara Walters and BrIan Williams. O'Neill Executive Director Preston Whiteway and Chairman Tom Viertel also took part in the evening.
Douglas, who credits the O'Neill with his acting start as a teenager in the 1960s, has been a Trustee since 1980. "My time at the O'Neill is one of the greatest influences on my life and career", says the film star. "For an artist, it is a place unique in the world."
The Monte Cristo Award is given to a prominent theater artist in recognition of a distinguished career exemplifying Eugene O'Neill's "pioneering spirit, unceasing artistic commitment, and excellence." Past recipients of the Award include James Earl Jones, Harold Prince, Kevin Spacey, Wendy Wasserstein, and Douglas mentor, Karl Malden.
"It is a rare moment when the O'Neill can honor an individual with such far reaching impact on our institution", remarks Executive Director Preston Whiteway. "Michael Douglas defines the ethos of the Monte Cristo Award – pioneering, artistic excellence, and a commitment to theater. His connection to the O'Neill and to founder George White is profound, and helped to make the O'Neill what it is today."
Presenting Sponsorship for the 12th Annual Monte Cristo Award is provided by Jann Wenner and Matt Nye, with Major Sponsorship support from 20th Century Fox, Onex Corporation, Kirk & Anne Douglas, Grega & Leo Daly, and the Joyce & Seward Johnson Foundation.
The Honorary Committee, co-chaired by Danny DeVito, Steven Soderbergh, and Barbara Walters , includes: Alec Baldwin, Annette Bening, Glenn Close, Pat Daily, Mr. & Mrs. Leo A. Daly III, Matt Damon, Jamie deRoy, Kirk & Anne Douglas, Robert Downey, Jr., Jennifer Garner, Jim Gianopulos, Bill Irwin, Cecelia Joyce & Seward Johnson, Marie-Josee & Henry Kravis, Doug Mercer, Ron Meyer, Lorne & Alice Michaels, Bette Midler, Rob & Michele Reiner, Tom Rothman, Joel Schumacher, Gerald Schwartz, Ridley Scott, Kathleen Turner, Jann Wenner, and BrIan Williams; O'Neill Chairman Thomas Viertel; O'Neill Founder George C. White; and O'Neill Trustees Ruth & Stephen Hendel, Harold Prince, Sara Mercer, and Betsy White.
Senator Christopher Dodd