Christopher Plummer’s stirring performance in “The Beginners” was rewarded with an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. He virtually stole the film as Hal, the gay father of Ewan McGregor’s character, Oliver.
Plummer, 82, was the oldest actor to win and Oscar, which was also his first despite a distinguished career in film.
“You’re only two years older than me darling, where have you been all my life?” he said to his Oscar statuette. “When I emerged from my mother’s womb, I was already rehearsing my Oscar acceptance speech,” he added.
Fortunately for the audience, he said, he’d largely forgotten it.
Plummer, who was born and raised in Canada, was an early favorite to win the Oscar. He was up against Kenneth Branagh for “My Week With Marilyn,” Jonah Hill for “Moneyball,” Nick Nolte in “Warrior” and Max von Sydow in “Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close.”
After the death of his wife, Hal reveals he’s gay to his son and finds a boyfriend. When he’s diagnosed with terminal cancer, Oliver helps care for him and finally gets to know his father before he dies.
Oliver is dogged by his unresolved emotions around his father’s death and his parents’ life together. When he meets a woman, Anna, a French actress, she also has conflicted feelings.
Plummer thanked “Beginners director Mike Mills, co-star McGregor and his family.