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Cinema/Chicago honors Jane Fonda
by Jerry Nunn, Windy City Times
2017-07-31

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The legendary actress Jane Fonda made a rare appearance in Chicago on July 29 at the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel Chicago.

In between wrapping up filming her successful Netflix series Grace and Frankie and starting a new movie called Our Souls at Night, Fonda flew into town to attend "A Tribute to Jane Fonda." She walked the red carpet to meet donors and board members for The Chicago International Film Festival and to accept her Gold Hugo Career Achievement Award.

Richard Roeper, of WFLD and the Chicago Sun-Times, hosted a Q&A portion to the evening with the iconic star. Film and television clips were shown of her massive body work, including the drama They Shoot Horses, Don't They? as well as the thriller Klute. She spoke of each endeavor with fond memories briefly in between the projected clips.

Talking about the film On Golden Pond had her impersonating Katharine Hepburn, and tearing up describing how supportive the actress was to her while shooting the movie.

Colleagues from past productions sent in videos in which they congratulated her for the achievement award; among them were Robert De Niro, several co-stars from Grace and Frankie, and Robert Redford. After Michael Douglas' video, she mentioned his role as Liberace and Matt Damon emerging from the pool in one scene of Behind the Candelabra.

The two-time Academy Award winner told the story of how the hit 9 to 5 was originally supposed to be a drama about women in the workplace. After seeing Lily Tomlin's show, she decided to make it a comedy and heard Dolly Parton's song "Two Doors Down" on the radio on the way home from the theater. It all came together and made history.

Her research and endeavor into Vietnam was explained with Coming Home, and Fonda revealed that her role in The China Syndrome role was originally written for a man.

Her Emmy-nominated part in HBO's Newsroom was highlighted as well as her television film The Dollmaker.

Cinema/Chicago founder and CEO Michael Kutza gave her the award officially after the Q&A segment. An after-party followed to close out the evening's festivities.

For more on the year-round programs of the organization, visit ChicagoFilmFestival.com .


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