Stanley Kubrick was honoured with the D.W. Griffith Award for lifetime achievement in 1997. The award, given by the Director’s Guild of America, has a prestigious history. Past winners include Orson Welles, Akira Kurosawa, Ingmar Bergman and Sidney Lumet.

Because Stanley was in the middle of production on “Eyes Wide Shut”, he recorded his acceptance speech and sent it to the DGA. The speech is extremely well-written. In fact, it may be the most insightful speech ever composed for a Hollywood award. However, Stanley’s stiff performance wasn’t necessarily on the same level as the text.

In the video below, Stanley’s wife, Christiane, remembers how Stanley prepared for the speech and how he felt after he saw it on T.V.

Here is Stanley’s D.W. Griffith Award acceptance speech: