Please welcome! The guild president! Alan Rosenberg! Let us extend a warm welcome to our global audience! Let us thank our fellow guilds! Please support us when we vote to strike! Also, he thanks the Teamsters. UNION! UNION!
Please welcome! Forest Whitaker! He is here to present James Earl Jones with the guild's highest honor: the opportunity for the TV audience to race to their kitchens and bathrooms. He is both "a king among men" and blessed with "the most evil voice in the universe" (HEE). James Earl Jones looks a little... frail. Like... he's smiling into the camera but... he's not blinking. The camera keeps cutting back to him and he never moves at all--his face hasn't moved since this whole thing started. I'm a little concerned.
His career began with a stammer and a poem recitation. He seems fine in the accompanying interview clip, so I don't know what's going on there. Young James Earl Jones is shouty. The Great White Hope! Star Wars! King Lear! Cat on a Hot Tin Roof! Sesame Street! Ladies and gentlemen, put down your cocktails and put your hands together for JAMES EARL JONES! "I've got something to say here," he says, and five minutes later, they're all still clapping. "Thank you. OKAY." He thanks his fellow actors for this great honor, and reminisces about Richard Harris. Then he invokes the Book of Genesis. Of course he does. "Now, I don't mean to embarrass anyone by comparing the actor to God, but..." This entire speech is about how wonderful his fellow actors are--I don't know why I was so worried, because this man is sharp and canny as a tack. And then he invokes Paul Newman, and the entire audience goes "AWWWWW." Aw.