Of all the actresses and celebrities at the star-saturated 2013 Oscars ceremony, two stood out when they won their awards -- Adele and Jennifer Lawrence. And they did so with their unabashed honesty, providing the world with a glimpse of their true selves on live television Sunday night (Feb. 24).
Adele won, along with co-writer and producer Paul Epworth, for "Skyfall," the title track to the latest James Bond film, for Best Original Song. She had already made the highlight reel with her stirring performance of the song. When she received her award and leaned in to say a few words, she was overwhelmed with emotion as she thanked her songwriting partner for believing in her. And although that kind of thing happens all the time at awards shows, it was her next words that make Adele the lovable international celebrity she is.
Overcome and choking up, she stepped away from the microphone. But just before Epworth stepped in, she tossed out a quick wave and hurriedly warbled, "And my man. I love you, baby." The gathering responded with an appreciative round of laughter.
And then came Jennifer Lawrence's big moment. Winner of the top prize in acting, she moved toward the steps to the stage, in her beautiful flowing Dior gown. And there she stumbled and went down. She quickly shielded her face, hesitated a brief second, then stood -- before Hugh Jackman could rush in and assist her -- and made her way to gather her Best Actress Oscar for "Silver Linings Playbook."
Not one to let a good moment for self-deprecation pass, Lawrence, who was noticeably surprised by hearing her name announced as the winner, said, "You guys are only standing up because you feel bad that I fell, and that's really embarrassing. But thank you." Then, wide-eyed, she added, "This is nuts!" And by the time she had given her acceptance speech and thanked a few benefactors, she still seemed shocked at holding the trophy in her hands.
Vulnerable and accessible, both women -- and totally unafraid to show it. And it is why we enjoy them and their success so much.
There is an honesty in their mannerisms, a truth in tone you would like to see in everyone. A humanness that evidences itself in moments of triumph and excitement and in the humbling groundings of weaknesses and scene-stealing fails. There is nothing pretentious or counterfeit about what they say or do (see Anne Hathaway's cutesy, "It came true..." preamble to her Best Supporting Actress acceptance speech). It is an unaffected quality and allows the audience to be as comfortable with them as they seem to be with themselves.
There is a certain approachableness with Adele and Lawrence as well. They present a certain vulnerability and everyday charm, an obvious humility that lends an accessible quality to their words and actions that make them endearing to fans and audiences worldwide.
In short: They're just plain likable. It makes them a desirable commodity as well (, from both a production and an consumption aspect. This bodes well for future endeavors for the two ladies. And their gain, if the 2013 Oscars and various other awards shows are accurate prognosticators, will certainly be our gain.