Javier Bardem and Woody Harrelson
01/29/2008 at 05:00 PM EST
Woody Harrelson turned a night of honoring Javier Bardem into an opportunity
to roast his No Country for Old Men
"When I first met Javier, he was doing some funny thing with his voice, and
I realized at the SAG Awards... he's Spanish!" cracked Harrelson. "I always
thought he was Mexican. No, I'm kidding. I thought he was Argentine."
Harrelson was on hand Monday night to help present Bardem with the Montecito
Award at the annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival, which goes to
a performer who has given a series of standout performances.
"I can't believe the luck this guy has," continued Harrelson. "You look at
his bio, and one page is just describing his journey and then the second
page is just all of the awards he's won .... And not to mention, I found this
out last night, too – he's going out with Penelope Cruz."
At the mention of Cruz's name, the crowed whooped and hollered as Bardem
laughed, dropped his head and covered his smiling face. (Bardem and Cruz,
who were first linked last summer and were spotted nuzzling on the beach
Maldives in the fall, have kept their romance low-key.)
"Seriously, you're sitting in the presence of one of the greatest actors
alive, but of course this award is not for me," Harrelson quipped, then
turned serious. "Josh Brolin did say to me that he thought Javier was one of
the greatest actors alive, and I'd be hard pressed to disagree with that
statement. ...It's a privilege to have worked with you and it's a privilege to
be your friend. Congratulations on this award."
Bardem continued the teasing spirit of Harrelson's speech, saying that
during filming of the movie "he was thinking that I was Antonio Banderas. I
didn't want to say the truth, because I didn't want to disappoint him."
But on a serious note, Bardem, who won the Screen Actors Guild Award
for outstanding male actor in a supporting role, humbly accepted his latest
"When I saw the invitation from my agent, I said 'I don't get it.' When I
saw the theater it was huge – I thought it was going to be smaller.
When I saw the crowd, I said 'I don't get it. Why me? Why? Why? Why me,
tonight?' And then I said 'You know what? I don't want to know!' Instead I
receive this as the greatest honor of my life."