“Behind The Candelabra” star Michael Douglas began his Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie
acceptance speech by jokinglytelling co-star Matt Damon it was a “two-handed job,” and asking if he wanted the “bottom or the top” of the award statue.
But the 68-year-old actor’s speech turned more serious when he gave a special “shout out” to his eldest son, Cameron, who is currently serving a 10-year sentence in prison on drug charges.
“I’m hoping I’ll be able and they’ll allow me to see him soon,” Douglas said on stage about his 35-year-old son from his first marriage to Diandra Luker.
Backstage after his win, Douglas further explained what he meant by his comment about Cameron.
“Well, my son is in federal prison based upon — he’s been a drug addict for a large part of his life and was arrested and selling drugs and is in federal prison,” Douglas explained to reporters backstage. “And part of their punishments if you happen to have a slip — this is for a prisoner who is nonviolent — as about a half a million of our drug addicted prisoners are, they punish you. So for my son’s case, he’s spent almost 2 years in solitary confinement and right now I’m being told that I cannot see him for two years.”
While Douglas was initially disappointed in his son, he says the experience has also made him seriously doubt the system.
“It’s over a year now and I’m questioning the system. Obviously, at first, I was certainly disappointed with my son, but I’ve reached a point now where I’m very very disappointed with the system and, as you can see, from what [U.S.] Attorney General Eric Holder has been doing — and other issues regarding our prison system — I think things are going to be revived regarding nonviolent drug addicts/criminals. My last comment on that is the United States represents 5 per cent of the world’s population and we have 25 per cent of the world’s prisoners.”
Watch the actor’s much talked about speech and explanation below:
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