Thank you. Thank you. Thanks very much. I've got a lot to say, and they've got a clock on me.
I want to thank everybody for this, the Academy. I was really honored and moved to accept this award. When the news first came to me about it, I was caught kind of off guard. I always thought this type of award meant that it was over. And then it dawned on me that I was busy in rehearsals on a play that I'm doing in London right now. It opened last night, Arthur Miller's last play, "Resurrection Blues." I was doing an interview for my new film that I just finished, "A Prairie Home Companion," which will come out in the summer. And I realized that it's not over. Of course I was happy and thrilled, and thrilled to accept this award. And I look at it as a nod to all of my films because, to me, I've just made one long film. And I know some of you have liked some of the sections, and others you.... Anyway, it's alright.
And I want to thank all of the people that have worked on all my pictures so hard, the brilliant actors, the amazing crews. And I can't name them all so I'm going to name a doctor who is taking care of me, Jody Kaplan*. So she represents everybody who have supported me and made it possible.
I've always said that making a film is like making a sandcastle at the beach. You invite your friends and you get them down there and you build this beautiful structure, several of you, and then you sit back and watch the tide come in. Have a drink, watch the tide come in and the ocean just takes it away. And that sandcastle remains in your mind. Now I've built about forty of them, and I never tire of it. No other filmmaker has gotten a better shake than I have. I'm very fortunate in my career. I've never had to direct a film I didn't choose or develop. I love filmmaking. It has given me an entree to the world and to the human condition and for that I'm forever grateful.
Finally I'd like to thank my family—you're all up there, all of them, almost—for their love and support through the years. And most importantly, I want to thank and applaud my wife Kathryn Reed Altman, without whom I wouldn't be here today. I love you, Trixie. Thank you.
Oh, one more thing. I'm here, I think, under kind of false pretenses, and I think I have to become straight with you. Ten years ago, eleven years ago, I had a heart transplant. A total heart transplant. I got the heart of, I think, a young woman who was about in her late thirties, and so by that kind of calculation, you may be giving me this award too early. Because I think I've got about forty years left on it. And I intend to use it. Thank you very much. Thank you.
[*Spelling not confirmed.]