Billy Crystal Set to Receive Major Lifetime Achievement Award

by Matthew Memrick

Comedy legend Billy Crystal will join a small club when he gets a lifetime achievement award next month at the 27th annual Critics Choice Awards.

The Hollywood Reporter said Crystal would join Lauren Bacall (1997), Kevin Costner (2015), Clint Eastwood (2004), Eddie Murphy (2020), and Robert Wise (1998) in the lifetime achievement award club. 

Actress Halle Berry will get the sixth annual SeeHer Award at the March 13 event. 

Taye Diggs and Nicole Byer are the event’s scheduled hosts. The Critics Choice Awards will take place at the Fairmont Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles and air on the CW and TBS.

Crystal Still Going Strong

The 73-year-old actor and longtime awards host has not slowed down since starting his showbiz career in 1975. Billy Crystal transitioned to the movies after starring in notable TV shows like “Soap” and “Saturday Night Live,” Crystal transitioned to films.

The actor starred in “When Harry Met Sally…,” “City Slickers,” “Analyze This,” and “Mr. Saturday Night.”

The nine-time Academy Awards host also has a bunch of awards himself. He’s earned six Primetime Emmy Awards, a Tony Award, a Mark Twain Prize, and his own Hollywood Walk of Fame (1991) star.

The star made his Broadway debut in 2004 with “700 Sundays,” his one-man show. Soon, he’ll return to the theatre with his first musical comedy. The April show is a spinoff of his 1992 “Mr. Saturday Night” movie.

Crystal Said Palance Got Into His ‘City Slickers’ Movie

One of Crystal’s most famous movies came in 1991 with “City Slickers.” 

The late actor Jack Palance, who starred as Curly Washburn, was a big part of that film’s success. Crystal wanted the famous Western actor for the role, and he told Jimmy Kimmel how he got Palance for the part. The Hollywood Reporter took note of the interview.

Crystal told Kimmel that he and director Ron Underwood waited for Palance to show up. The actor was 20 minutes late, and Crystal was nervous about how the meeting would work. The actor said that Palance didn’t want to ruin the movie pitch, so he was quiet in the film’s first meeting at the Bel-Air Hotel.

The story goes that when 6-foot-3 Palance showed, he stayed quiet. The move scared Crystal, who said he felt like he was “about to have a martini with Dracula.”

Crystal started to ramble before Palance responds.

The actor, who died in 2006, said, “‘Save it. I really like this a lot. And I think I would do very well as Curly.’”

Palance was right. He earned a Golden Globe and an Academy Award for best supporting actor for the film. Notably, the film had a $26 million budget, and it made over $180 million at the box office.