The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. will announce the next recipient of the Cecil B. DeMille Award on Nov. 9. Let's hope it's not another old, white guy as usual: Al Pacino (age 60 in 2001), Harrison Ford (age 59 in 2002), Gene Hackman (age 72 in 2003), Michael Douglas (age 59 in 2004), Robin Williams (age 53 in 2005), Anthony Hopkins (age 68 in 2006), Warren Beatty (age 69 in 2007), Steven Spielberg (age 62 in 2009; he was to receive the award in 2008 but it was postponed due to the writers' strike) and Martin Scorsese (age 67 in 2010). Our forums moderator Chris "Boomer" Beachum offers us these observations about the award's past:
• It has been a decade since the last woman was honored (Barbra Streisand in 2000).
• It has been 28 years since the only minority was honored (Sidney Poitier in 1982).
• The honoree is typically an actor, actress or director in his or her 50s or older who is willing to attend and accept the award. The association also does not like to honor someone who has a strong chance at a nomination at the next ceremony.
• If a woman is chosen this time, the most likely person will be Meryl Streep. It is a rare year in which she has nothing in contention. Streep also has an astounding 25 nominations and 7 wins in her career. If not Streep, the other strong female contenders would be Julie Andrews, Ellen Burstyn, Carol Burnett, Jane Fonda, Whoopi Goldberg, Goldie Hawn, Diane Keaton, Jessica Lange, Angela Lansbury, Mary Tyler Moore and Shirley Temple.
• If a minority is chosen for 2011, the most likely contenders would be Bill Cosby, Morgan Freeman, Whoopi Goldberg, Samuel L. Jackson, James Earl Jones and Denzel Washington.
• If another white male is chosen, the top contenders would be Woody Allen, Mel Brooks, Michael Caine, Francis Ford Coppola, Billy Crystal, Robert De Niro, James Garner, Ron Howard, Jerry Lewis, George Lucas, Steve Martin, Mike Nichols, Peter O'Toole, Mickey Rooney, John Travolta, Dick Van Dyke and Jon Voight.
• People who might be considered but have strong nomination chances (and therefore would probably not be chosen this time): Jeff Bridges, Glenn Close, Judi Dench, Robert Duvall, Sally Field, Tom Hanks, Helen Mirren, Susan Sarandon, Sissy Spacek, Maggie Smith, Oliver Stone and Betty White.
Photo: The Golden Globe. Credit: Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. via Getty Images