Diane Keaton Speaks at the Bakersfield Business Conference
By Veronica Renaker
Breaking the day’s political tone, Diane Keaton gave attendees of the Bakersfield Business Conference something else to digest: Love.
For those who were hungry for politics, this shift came as a total surprise. Several made their way out of the main tent, while countless fans cheered out of respect and admiration for the leading lady as she entered the stage.
Keaton, an award winning actress, smiled as she recalled the many “kinds of love” that she’s experienced throughout her life, love that grows and changes. She spoke of the importance of loving and valuing yourself, and with that you can achieve anything.
“I chose my dream, and you know what? My dream came true,” Keaton said.
Ending her speech, Keaton delighted the crowd by singing a few lines from the song “Seems Like Old Times,” which she sang in her performance in “Annie Hall.”
“Seems like old times
“Dinner dates and flowers
“Just like old times
“Staying up for hours
“Making dreams come true
“Doing things we used to do
“Seems like old times
“Being here with you.”
Keaton is an actress, writer, director and producer. In addition to her Oscar win for her role in “Annie Hall,” Keaton has garnered 23 award nominations and 17 wins.
The lead in the 1977 film “Annie Hall” was Keaton’s breakout role and had been written expressly for her by the movie’s director, Woody Allen. This role was based on her real-life personality and created using Keaton’s nickname, Annie, and real last name, Hall. Keaton went on to mesmerize Hollywood and audiences throughout the country with her quirky personality and fashion sense.
“Annie Hall” was not her first role, however. She had her first starring role in the Broadway play “Hair.” Her first movie role was in “Lovers and Other Strangers.” But it was with the play “Play It Again, Sam,” that Keaton received a Tony nomination and began a record of award-winning performances, including many directed by Woody Allen.
The first of several starring roles in films directed by Woody Allen was her performance in the screen adaptation of “Play It Again, Sam.” She later went on to star in the Allen films “Sleeper,” “Interiors,” “Radio Days,” “Manhattan,” “Love and Death,” and “Manhattan Murder Mystery.”
Although comedy was where Keaton experienced most of her initial success, she did earn a Golden Globe nomination for the thriller “Looking for Mr. Goodbar.” In that same year, she received an Oscar for “Annie Hall,” which also won an Oscar for Best Picture. Keaton later starred in the movie “Reds,” for which she received another Oscar nomination, and again stepped outside of the comedy genre to star in the 1984 film “The Little Drummer Girl” and Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Godfather,” “The Godfather: Part II,” and “The Godfather: Part III.”
But she returned to her comedy roots alongside Steve Martin in films like “Father of the Bride”
and its sequel, “Father of the Bride Part II,” as well as by starring alongside Bette Midler in
“The First Wives Club” and Jack Nicholson in “Something’s Gotta Give.”
Keaton began directing with the documentary film “Heaven.” She went on to direct other projects such as the acclaimed movie “Unstrung Heroes” and an episode of the cult classic TV show “Twin Peaks,” as well as several music videos.
Over the entirety of her career, Keaton has appeared in more than 50 films, television shows, and plays. Today, she continues to act, write and direct with an appeal that spans generations.