Ellen DeGeneres honored with Mark Twain prize
October 23rd, 2012
12:14 PM ET

Ellen DeGeneres honored with Mark Twain prize

Washington, D.C. had a busy night on Monday. While politicos were tuned in to the presidential debate at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida, the artsy set was busy celebrating Ellen DeGeneres at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

The 54-year-old comedian and daytime talk show host was honored as the 15th recipient of the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, an award given to those who've made an impact on American society with their work, as Twain did. Tina Fey, Bill Cosby and Will Ferrell are among the past recipients.

While accepting the award (and handily displaying why she won it), DeGeneres reportedly joked that she's "never read Mark Twain before ... But to be fair, he's never seen my HBO specials," according to the New York Times.

Among the attendees were Jimmy Kimmel, former Mark Twain Prize recipient Lily Tomlin, and "Glee" star Jane Lynch, who thanked DeGeneres for opening doors for other LGBT entertainers. (DeGeneres, who wed Portia de Rossi in 2010, reportedly quipped of her career Monday, "I just thought I'd be a closeted gay comedian wearing parachute pants.")

Lynch, who's also been open about her sexuality, told DeGeneres, “I’m pretty darn sure I could not have the career I have, that I could not live as openly as I’ve lived, if it hadn’t been for you. You really took one for the team.”

Catch the full event on PBS next Tuesday, October 30, at 8 p.m. ET.


Filed under: Celebrities • Ellen DeGeneres

soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. MORE LIKE TOWN RASBERRY AWARD....TIPS FOR HACKERS

    1. make sure she is not connected too the greatest technology in the united states of America.
    2. make sure she is not capable of tracking ip addresses
    3. make sure the person does not deal with equipment that is number 2 in the country next too ncis.
    4. your not my boyfriend.
    5. make sure she does not have a nosey reporter cousin in the California area.

    October 18, 2013 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Oralee Geers

    DeGeneres started performing stand-up comedy at small clubs and coffee houses. By 1981 she was the emcee at Clyde's Comedy Club in New Orleans. DeGeneres cites Woody Allen and Steve Martin as her main influences at this time.,-

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    May 4, 2013 at 10:12 pm | Report abuse |
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    December 29, 2012 at 9:52 pm | Report abuse |
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    December 17, 2012 at 4:24 am | Report abuse |
  5. Ted Ward

    It would have been nice if she would have said she had read Mark Twain. But I guess it's not PC to be well read.

    November 2, 2012 at 12:44 am | Report abuse |
  6. dan

    She is a leisbian so of course Hollywood in going to honor her for being such a model citizen.

    November 1, 2012 at 4:35 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Patricia

    I always get a nice shot of moral superiority reading the hateful trolls on the Internet. Thanks, bullies, for showing us good people how good we really are.

    October 31, 2012 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Hannibal Fontanimal

    Damn, she is UGLY!

    No guy in his right mind would want that.

    October 31, 2012 at 11:02 am | Report abuse |
    • Patricia

      You make me feel morally superior to you, and for that I thank you. It's a nice way to start the day.

      October 31, 2012 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
  9. bubba rydel

    we can only imagine where that mouth has been

    October 31, 2012 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |
  10. bubba rydel

    you can only imagine where that mouth has been

    October 31, 2012 at 12:45 am | Report abuse |
  11. Minority report

    I like Ellen a lot and maybe some day she should get this award. Same for Will Ferrell and Tina Fey–they just haven't accomplished enough to merit this honor. Instead, they should be honoring humorists like Mort Sahl, Dick Gregory, and the Smothers Brothers–they stood for something and made a difference and are really more the successors of Twain than DeGeneres, Ferrell, and Fey. These three are funny, but just aren't on a par with Cosby and George Carlin and some of the other honorees.

    October 30, 2012 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
  12. phần mềm bản quyền|linh kiện máy tính|phần mềm diệt virus|máy in

    hi!,I really like your writing very much! proportion we keep in touch more about your post on AOL? I require an expert in this house to unravel my problem. Maybe that's you! Taking a look forward to peer you.

    October 29, 2012 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
  13. Melissa

    Wow, LOOOOTS of negativity here. Get over it people. Ellen is a funny, charming lady, who GIVES ALOT to people and charity organizaions. She took a hard hit to her career when she came out publicly, but she made it that much easier for the rest of the closeted community to have the careers that they did. I applaud her for her strength, and ability to bounce back the way she did. YAY ELLEN!

    October 29, 2012 at 2:55 am | Report abuse |
  14. Fred Bassatt

    She thinks she is on the same level as Mark Twain? She is delusional.

    October 28, 2012 at 6:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ted Ward

      How could she think that!? She says she hasn't even read Mark Twain.

      November 2, 2012 at 12:52 am | Report abuse |
  15. Lori

    Dumb Beotch

    October 28, 2012 at 6:22 pm | Report abuse |
  16. RESIDENT EVIL

    Didn't she play one of the zombies in Resident Evil...? Yeah, I think played the zombie with blod hair...

    October 26, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Chapulin Colorado

    I heard she is a D Y K E but it doen't matter because she is ugly!

    October 26, 2012 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse |
  18. T.rex

    I like Ellen soley for the reason that her humor is clean.... She doesn't have to resort to crassness like a that one redhead comedienne, or Chelsey Handler, Sarah Silverman... etc... Its like many comediennes feel they have to be over the top to be noticed in a field predominated by men. Ellen doesn't lower herself to that. That said... she should read more too, 'cause Twain was the bomb.

    October 26, 2012 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Clete

    I am of the opinion that not reading some of Mark Twain's novels is not something to joke about. He remains one of the giants of American literature and anyone who has not read some of his works can call themselves truly educated.

    October 26, 2012 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
    • Silly1

      Having read Twain, I am completely confident he would disagree with you.

      October 26, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Report abuse |
  20. mikrik13

    "[I've] never read Mark Twain before ... But to be fair, he's never seen my HBO specials." Hardly the same thing. How she won this honor is beyond comprehension. There must be a slimmer group of candidates than the 2012 presidential election. Apparently, the adage that anyone can grow up to be president is absolutely true.

    October 26, 2012 at 9:18 am | Report abuse |
  21. Tony

    Mark Twain wrote his own stuff, she can't say that.

    October 25, 2012 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
  22. we heard

    it goes from hear to another state.

    October 23, 2012 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
  23. 3 way hackers

    area getting cute ... .watching...tech

    October 23, 2012 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Ellen

    is a slob basically like you 2

    October 23, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Robert Downey Jr.

    a person who nobody wants to be around - guyz

    October 23, 2012 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Dan

    omar- I'm a gay man..any chance we could booogalooo sometime?

    October 23, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Omar

      I'm from Romania. We get vaccinated when youn so we don't catch the gay.

      October 23, 2012 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Beth

    My nose is kind of stopped up. I wished it wasn't.

    October 23, 2012 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Omar

    Yeah, a keep your eyes on the road your hands upon the wheel
    Keep your eyes on the road your hands upon the wheel
    Yeah, we're goin' to the roadhouse we're gonna have a real, a good time

    Yeah at the back at the roadhouse they got some bungalows
    Yeah at the back at the roadhouse they got some bungalows
    And that's for the people who like to go down slow

    Let it roll, baby roll
    Let it roll, baby roll
    Let it roll, baby roll
    Let it roll, all night long
    Do it, Robbie, do it

    You gotta roll, roll, roll
    You gotta thrill my soul, all
    Roll, roll, roll, roll and thrill my soul
    You gotta beep a gunk a chucha
    Honk konk konk

    You gotta each you puna
    Each ya bop a luba
    Each y'all bump a kechonk
    Ease sum konk, ya, ride

    Ashen lady, ashen lady
    Give up your vows, give up your vows
    Save our city, save our city
    Right now

    Well, I woke up this morning and I got myself a beer (yum)
    Well, I woke up this morning and I got myself a beer. (yum)
    The future's uncertain and the end is always near

    Let it roll, baby roll
    Let it roll, baby roll
    Let it roll, baby roll
    Let it roll, all night long

    October 23, 2012 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jennifer

      I liked when the Monkees sang that song. I think they played it on the Sooooouuuuul Traaaaain.

      October 23, 2012 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
  29. ITS GO GO TIME

    Goin' to a go go
    Goin' to a go go
    Na-na-na-na, yeah-hey

    Well there's a brand new place I found-a
    Where people goin' from miles around-a
    They come from everywhere
    And if you'll drop in there
    You might see anyone in town-a

    (Goin' to a go go) everybody's
    (Goin' to a go go) come on now
    (Don't you wanna go?) yeah
    A one more time, yeah

    I'm (goin' to a go go) hoo-hoo-wee-eee
    (Goin' to a go go) baby come on now
    It doesn't matter where you are-a
    A go go can be found
    You'll see some people from your block
    And don't be shocked
    If you see your favorite star-a
    (Goin' to a go go)

    'Cause everybody
    (Goin' to a go go)
    Oh, come on now-ow
    (Don't you wanna go?)
    Yeah people! come on now

    Instrumental

    (Oooo-oooo)
    (Oooo-oooo)
    Na-na-na-na-na yeah-hey
    (Ooooo-ooooo)
    Hooooo
    (Ooooo-ooooo)
    Tell me – (don't you wanna go?)
    Yeah! now it's alright-a

    I-am (goin' to a go-go)
    Yes I am now (goin' to a go-go)
    Oh come on now-ow
    It doesn't matter if-a you go stag-a
    It doesn't matter if-a you go drag-a You're sure to have some fun
    I'm tellin' everyone
    Most every taxi a-that you flag is
    (Goin' to a go-go)
    Oh come on baby
    (Goin' to a go-go)
    Baby come on now-ow
    (Don't you wanna go?)
    Yeah!
    A one more time, yeah

    I'm (goin to a go-go)
    A-hoo-hoo-wee-eee
    (Goin' to a go-go)
    Baby come on now-ow
    (Goin' to a go-go)
    Come on baby
    (Goin' to a go-go)
    Oh come on now
    Yea-yea-yea
    Yea-yea-yea
    FADES-
    Yea-yea-yea-yea-yea-yea-yea
    (Goin' to a go go)

    October 23, 2012 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Omar

    Yep. I heard she's a lesbean. I hope they put her in jail.

    October 23, 2012 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • RZ70

      Once I get past the surface level stupidity of your comment, I find a much deeper stupidity. You want to put in a place where she will be surrounded mostly by her own gender because she prefers the company of her own gender. Have you ever considered the possibility that you will just never be considered 'clever' and perhaps the best thing you could do for any cause that you believe in (right or wrong) would be to shut up?

      October 25, 2012 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Bronx?

    i hear you laughing from here....hahahahaha

    October 23, 2012 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Job Done--

    wanna help make fun of the whale??....then i have to "gogo"–lol

    October 23, 2012 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Job Done--

    wanna help us trash the whale later? bb....then i have to go go...lol

    October 23, 2012 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  34. jabberwolf

    Ellen is ok, but she's not that funny – and she is DEFINATELY not one of the top comedians.
    I guess its Hollywood being aplogetic for some reason.
    This just cheapens the award for all those that really deserve it! While we're at it, why not give a nobel prize to Obama for doing nothing ... oh wait....

    October 23, 2012 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  35. ellen

    has class...she's not a whale.

    October 23, 2012 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Robert

    She kind of looks gay to me. Is she one of those lesbeans?

    October 23, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Mission Accomplished

    lets go make fun of the hack whale some more....and then fool around all night.

    October 23, 2012 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |

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