American Film Institute: Is George Clooney too young to be 2018 AFI life achievement award recipient?

George Clooney will be honored with the 2018 life achievement award by the American Film Institute at a star-studded ceremony next June. But at age 57 for the event, is he too young to be receiving an AFI award for his career?

There’s no doubt that the actor, director, writer, and producer has had a stellar resume of films in the past two decades. He has won Oscars for Best Supporting Actor (“Syriana,” 2005) and Best Picture (“Argo,” 2012). Clooney was also nominated for “Good Night and Good Luck” (Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, 2005), “Michael Clayton” (Best Actor, 2007), “Up in the Air” (Best Actor, 2009), “The Descendants” (Best Actor, 2011), and “The Ides of March” (Best Adapted Screenplay, 2011).

For most of its 46-year history, the AFI has chosen people for the life achievement award in their 60’s or older. The past 13 honorees have been director George Lucas (2005, age 61), actor Sean Connery (2006, age 75), actor Al Pacino (2007, age 67), actor/director Warren Beatty (2008, age 71), actor Michael Douglas (2009, age 64), director Mike Nichols (2010, age 78), actor Morgan Freeman (2011, age 74), actress Shirley MacLaine (2012, age 78), actor/director/writer Mel Brooks (2013, age 86), actress Jane Fonda (2014, age 76), actor Steve Martin (2015, age 69), composer John Williams (2016, age 84), and actress Diane Keaton (2017, age 71).

However, in the earliest part of the 21st century, AFI voters took a more youthful path like they are with Clooney next year. Those recipients were actor Harrison Ford (2000, age 57), actress/director Barbra Streisand (2001, age 58), actor Tom Hanks (2002, age 45), actor Robert De Niro (2003, age 59), and actress Meryl Streep (2004, age 54).

Clooney was part of  our recent poll asking which actor should be honored by the AFI but only finished with 1% of votes. Johnny Depp had the overwhelming support of 77% from over 1,000 voters. Tied with second place at 6% were two-time Oscar champ Michael Caine and one-time winner Robert Duvall.

We also offered a separate poll this past week about your top actress choices. Julie Andrews (Oscar winner for “Mary Poppins”) was in first place with 32%, followed by two-time Academy Award winner Jessica Lange with 16% and six-time nominee Glenn Close with 14%.

Be sure to make your Oscar nomination predictions so that Hollywood studio executives and top name stars can see how their films are faring in our Academy Awards odds. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before nominees are announced on January 23. And join in the fierce debate over the 2018 Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our film forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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