It's a shame that the Hollywood Film Festival's Hollywood Awards aren't televised. There's a lazy, mischievous air about the gala that makes it seem like the Golden Globes on even more bubbly. They're held in the same space as the Globes — in the ballroom of the Beverly Hilton Hotel — where stars giggle, prattle, meow, yell, insult, confess and laugh while not being barked at by TV producers rushing to commercial breaks. They throw a lot of f-bombs around. It's a hoot.
Monday night one of them almost even cried at the podium: Sean Penn as he accepted a humanitarian award for the charitable work performed by him and his organization JP/HRO to help victims of the earthquake in Haiti. He told a touching story of a Haitian policeman who saved 50 lives after enduring the horror of losing his wife and children. Penn also made startling confessions, including how his staffers "chuckled" when they heard that he, of all people — someone who subjects them to "tantrums" and other unpleasant behavior — was receiving a humanitarian award.
Those of us in the audience even learned that Helena Bonham Carter (winner of the Hollywood supporting actress award) has a nickname, "Cups," because she's always surrounded by cups of various, mostly caffeinated beverages. She was honored by the festival for performing two queens (the nasty red one in "Alice in Wonderland" and the beloved "queen mum" Elizabeth in "The King's Speech") and a witch (Bellatrix Lestrange in "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1"), only one of which was directed by Tim Burton ("Alice").
"I don't just work for my boyfriend!" she shouted to the room full of film titans. "I'm available for leading roles too!"
There was a funny exchange between Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Willis when they presented a career achievement award to Sylvester Stallone. See video below. After the jump: Justin Timberlake, Andrew Garfield, Jesse Eisenberg and costars accept "The Social Network's" prize for ensemble acting.