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Sunday, Jan. 13, 2013, at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on NBC
Jodie Foster/AP

Foster alludes to being gay, hints at retiring

Veteran actress delivers memorable acceptance speech for lifetime achievement award

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) -- Jodie Foster came out without really coming out, and suggested she was retiring from acting without exactly saying so, in a long, breathless and rambling speech at Sunday night's Golden Globe Awards.

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Foster took the stage as this year's winner of the Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award, which had been announced previously. But her acceptance speech was anything but predictable as the veteran actress seized control of what is every year a noisy, boozy ballroom, and the crowd of A-listers quickly quieted down as it became apparent that she had something serious and important to say.

The 50-year-old Oscar-winner for "The Silence of the Lambs" and "The Accused," who's been protective of her private life and reluctant to discuss her sexual orientation, was coy at first, suggesting she had a big announcement that would make her publicist nervous (the broadcast audio dropped out at this point, but for no apparent reason; nothing was said off-color). Then she stated: "I'm just going to put it out there, loud and proud ... I am, uh, single," pausing for dramatic effect before that last word. "I hope you're not disappointed that there won't be a big coming-out speech tonight. I already did my coming out about a thousand years ago, back in the Stone Age."

Foster joked that celebrities are now expected to reveal they're gay "with a press conference, a fragrance and a prime-time reality show. And you guys might be surprised, but I am not Honey Boo Boo Child. No. I'm sorry. That's just not me. It never was and it never will be. But please don't cry, because my reality show would be so boring."

She added defiantly: "If you had been a public figure from the time that you were a toddler, if you'd had to fight for a life that felt real and honest and normal against all odds, then maybe you, too, might value privacy above all else."

Foster thanked Cydney Bernard, a production manager and her former partner of 20 years, whom she identified as "my heroic co-parent, my ex-partner in love but righteous soul sister in life" -- a relationship she never hid and from which she has two sons.

She also made it sound as if she planned to retire from acting once and for all, something she'd toyed with previously.

More: Golden Globes analysis | Red carpet photos | Winners

"This feels like the end of one era and the beginning of something else. Scary and exciting and now what?" Foster said. "I may never be up on this stage again, on any stage, for that matter."

But backstage afterward, she clarified for reporters: "I could never stop acting. You'd have to drag me behind a team of horses. I'd like to be directing tomorrow. I'm more into it than I have ever been."

As for why she chose this place and time to discuss her private life, Foster explained backstage: "The speech kind of speaks for itself. ... It's a big moment. I wanted to say what's most in my heart."

Her revelation, vague as it was, nonetheless set Twitter on fire with reactions. Some called her words moving and brave while others suggested that she should have done more to be a role model for lesbians.

Ricky Martin, who came out himself in 2010, tweeted: "Jody Foster On your terms. Its your time! Not before nor after. Its when it feels right."

And Amy Poehler, who co-hosted the Golden Globes with longtime friend and fellow comedian Tina Fey, cracked as she was signing off for the night: "We're going home with Jodie Foster!"

Jan 14, 2013 11:59AM
So what, She hasen't done anything of any importance for years. Good riddence to a carpet munchen liberal !!!!!  You will be missed by no one.
Jan 14, 2013 11:59AM
Why is it that gays feel a need to let everyone know they are gay?  REALLY?  Everyone I know likes a person for who they are not their sexual orientation.  SO WHAT IF YOU ARE GAY, people don't care?
Jan 14, 2013 11:59AM
Jodie Foster has reached the second plateau that "Ralph Kramden" once
mentioned in the Honeymooners. She wasn't being logical, she was being emotional, honest and true. Yet, for some people-it's just not good enough. For others like myself, she represents a dignity that is now lost in Hollywood, and she proudly held her own, without sounding coy or pretentious. 

Jan 14, 2013 11:58AM
Who cares about Jodie Foster, or any of them really?  Don't you people have your own real world to live in and care about?  Could care less about her millions of dollars, who she has sex with, or whether she wants privacy while still wanting all the publicity she needs to make more millions.  Get real people.  What is fun is watching them ramble on about themselves and how important they are and how they love all the people who sign their pay checks... hey, we all do that.
Jan 14, 2013 11:57AM

Fruits and nuts pushed on America by the media have had a bad effect on our country. I really dont need to hear about anyones mental illness,Or have it pushed on me as being normal.

           The wailing about guns killing people and not a peep about abortions.

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Jodie Foster to receive Cecil B. Demille award at the 2013 Golden Globes awards ceremony.The decorated actress will be honored for lifetime achievement. MSN Entertainment's guide to the 2013 Golden Globes is your go-to resource for full coverage of the awards with predictions, red-carpet coverage, nominees, winners, videos, photos, highlights and more.