Diane Keaton has paid tribute to her late mother Dot as she gave a touching address accepting her Sherry Lansing Leadership Award at the 21st annual Women in Entertainment Breakfast on Wednesday.
Keaton's mother, Dorothy Hall, died of Alzheimer's disease in 2008 aged 86. Keaton used her award to pay tribute to her, and even spoke directly to her mother during her speech, describing her as "my first and most inspired leader."
She said, "You know, mom, sometimes I wonder what would have happened if I had told you how much I love the sound of your laughter. Would that have made you feel proud of yourself? Or what if I just told you how proud I was to be the daughter of a really special former Mrs. Los Angeles? Would that have made a difference? Or if I'd, oh god, told you how quickly I ran home to you the day Dave Garland stuck his finger in my padded bra and made me feel humiliated? Would you have finally understood that you were irreplaceable, mom?"
She added, "Or what if I just told you how much fun it was for me just to sit across from the kitchen counter and watch you make your mid-afternoon snack of Wheat Thins with longhorns and dill pickles on the side, would you have felt fulfilled?"
Keaton admitted that she regretted never telling her mother those words when she could have "really understood."
The main theme of Keaton's speech was leadership, and the actress told the audience, "My idea of a leader would be somebody like Sherry Lansing. You know why? Because she has this gift, like so many of you here today do, of organizing large groups of people in order to achieve a common goal."
Keaton added, "And Sherry's particular brand of leaders , you know, that kind of leader has to be charismatic and intelligent and attractive, but most of all persuasive – and that's not me."
Here is a video of Diane Keaton winning an Oscar for Best Actress for her role in Annie Hall: