By Beth Hanna | Thompson on Hollywood February 19, 2012 at 2:46PM
The American Cinema Editors Eddie awards were handed out on Saturday evening at the Beverly Hilton, where "The Descendants," "The Artist" and "Rango" were the big winners of the evening. Also honored with achievement awards were Doug Ibold, Joel Cox and Alexander Payne. Below, a round-up of the night's highlights, and the full list of winners.
'The Artist' strikes again
Upon (unsurprisingly) winning the award for Best Editing in the Comedy or Musical Feature category, Michel Hazavanicius quipped, "I'm really proud, because I'm not a natural editor. But I love editing, I think it's my favorite part. It's like when you're a kid and you rebuild the toy you just broke." He also thanked Harvey Weinstein for distributing the film and for "not re-cutting the movie." Hazanavicius' co-editor, Anne-Sophie Bion accepted her award by saying, "I'm so happy to be part of [the ACE] family now."
'The Descendents' wins for Dramatic Feature
It was a good night for the filmmaking family of "The Descendants." Payne received the ACE Golden Eddie Honoree award, and almost stole host Patton Oswalt's funny man status with his acceptance speech, laying out his three principles of editing: "Number one: Editing is the ongoing process of disguising how bad the film really is. Number two: Every day we edit, we make the film suck less. Number three: Editing is the natural state of man." The majority of Payne's speech was dedicated to his editor Kevin Tent. "My biggest thrill with this year's Oscar nominations, and what I thought was the truest recognition of 'The Descendants''s merits, was Kevin's nomination." Tent went on to win the award for Best Editing in the Dramatic Feature category.
Thank you, Patton
Oswalt introed himself as "Patton Oswalt, F.A.T.," and announced: "This is a celebration of a year ago today when you guys were let out into the sunlight." Films from polar ends of the spectrum were at the mercy of his zingers: "Any group of people that sits through 'Chipwrecked' a thousand times, trying to make it look good, you guys are the real heroes." And of Terence Malick's universe-creation epic: "'Tree of Life' not nominated this year?! I know! Maybe one of you could edit that and we could nominate it next year. You heard me! Crack a case of Red Bull."
When introducing octogenarian Anne Coates, who edited David Lean's "Lawrence of Arabia," Oswalt pointed out: "She did it on celluloid! Not on my some Mac ProBook, sitting in the Starbucks, tweeting 'Oh, Peter O'Toole, so gorgeous. Hashtag blonde!'"
Clint Eastwood presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to long-time editor Joel Cox (who has been editing films for 51 years). "A guy told me many years back, 'Whatever you do, get to know the cutter. Because they can really make you look bad. And if they like you, they can make you look kind of okay,'" Eastwood said. "Joel turned out to be a spectacular cutter." Earlier in the evening, Oswalt opted for a different use of the word: "I have not seen this many cutters in one room since the Teen Choice Awards."
Full list of winners:
BEST EDITED FEATURE FILM (DRAMATIC):
Kevin Tent, A.C.E.
BEST EDITED FEATURE FILM (COMEDY OR MUSICAL):
Anne-Sophie Bion & Michel Hazanavicius
BEST EDITED ANIMATED FEATURE FILM:
Craig Wood, A.C.E.
BEST EDITED HALF-HOUR SERIES FOR TELEVISION:
Curb Your Enthusiasm: “Palestinian Chicken”
Steven Rasch, A.C.E.
BEST EDITED ONE-HOUR SERIES FOR COMMERCIAL TELEVISION:
Breaking Bad: “Face Off”
BEST EDITED ONE-HOUR SERIES FOR NON-COMMERCIAL TELEVISION:
Jordan Goldman, David Latham
BEST EDITED MINISERIES OR MOTION PICTURE FOR TELEVISION:
Sarah Flack, A.C.E. & Robert Pulcini
BEST EDITED DOCUMENTARY:
Lewis Erskine & Aljernon Tunsil
BEST EDITED REALITY SERIES:
Anthony Bourdain – No Reservations: “Haiti”