Dressed in her trademark blazer, sweater, and slacks, popular TV host and internationally renowned comedian Ellen DeGeneres arrived at Washington D.C.’s Kennedy Center with a purpose. What purpose, exactly?
She had arrived to become the 15th recipient of the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.
The Mark Twain Prize has been awarded to some of America’s greatest comedians, including Richard Pryor, Billy Crystal, Whoopi Goldberg, Steve Martin, Bill Cosby, George Carlin and Tina Fey. Will Ferrell accepted the award last year.
The night highlighted some of the most important and funniest points of Ellen’s career, including her 1997 “coming out” moment on the sitcom Ellen, Dory’s whale speech in Finding Nemo, The Ellen DeGeneres Show scare montage:
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Plus a few of her hilarious stand-up specials and her famous 1986 “Call to God” performance on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. She was the first female comedian ever to be invited to Johnny’s couch for an interview.
When asked if she was happy about the Mark Twain prize, Ellen replied, “Yep, I’m happy!”. But it was her acceptance speech that melted our hearts:
My parents were divorced when I was young and my mother was sad a lot and I just wanted to make her laugh. I had no idea there could be a career in making people happy. I tried everything. I shucked oysters, I painted houses, I sold vacuum cleaners, I was a court runner. But there was always a voice saying you should be doing something different, and it was usually by my boss and I was being fired…I never could have imagined my life ending up this way.
Aww, Ellen. You’ve come a long and far way and you know what we think? No one’s going to dispute this win anyway because after all, you are every celebrity’s (and our) best friend! We love you, Ellen DeGeneres. Congratulations!
To show her some love, hit her up via her Twitter account.