David Lynch is no stranger to Oscars recognition. Over the last four decades, the veteran filmmaker has been nominated for four separate Academy Awards, for films such as “Elephant Man,” “Blue Velvet,” and “Mulholland Dr.” But it wasn’t until very recently that he was actually given a trophy, thanks to the Academy’s honorary Oscar that was given to him at the Governors Awards. And according to Laura Dern, his reaction to finally receiving the coveted honor is a bit surprising.
Speaking to Vulture, Dern, who presented the award to Lynch, alongside Kyle MacLachlan and Isabella Rossellini, described the scene in which the filmmaker was finally given his Academy Award, almost exactly 40 years after his first nomination. And it wasn’t relief, excitement, or even disgust that was felt. Instead, it was something else. Something very…Lynch-ian.
“The whole room goes insane,” she said. “The quintessential moment I’ve had with David in all of these years was, he was holding his Oscar, and we walked back for a smoke. He needed a smoke. And as we went outside, he was holding it and I said, ‘How do you feel?’ and he goes, ‘Wow, this is so pretty. But you know, we’re just lucky.’ Which people say, you know. And I was accepting it in the way I’ve heard other people say it.”
The actress continued, “He goes, ‘I mean, Tidbit [the nickname he uses for Dern], they’re not our ideas. We’re just lucky if we catch them.’ And I’m just like, ‘Yeah, well, that’s David Lynch.’ They’re not our ideas. Things move through us. We didn’t make them up. I just think that’s really beautiful.”
So even after all the acclaim. All the love. All the adoration from generations of film fans. David Lynch still doesn’t feel as if he earned the Oscar. Instead, he believes that he was given a trophy because of how he was a conduit for some ideas that seemed to take hold and strike a chord with audiences. Dern is right, the thought is definitely beautiful. And it’s most definitely something only David Lynch would consider.