Sally Field Recalls Roles 'That Changed Me' as She Wins 2023 SAG Life Achievement Award

Andrew Garfield presented Sally Field with the SAG Life Achievement Award at the 2023 SAG Awards on Sunday

Sally Field is this year's Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award winner!

At the SAG Awards 2023 on Sunday at the Fairmont Century Plaza in Los Angeles, Field, 76, recalled important roles from her more than five decades in acting as she accepted the award from her Amazing Spider-Man costar Andrew Garfield on behalf of SAG-AFTRA.

As Field recalled first joining SAG and getting her first acting role in the 1960s sitcom Gidget, the actress said she "never knew what I would say or do" while learning to act on stage growing up.

"I wasn't looking for the applause or the attention, even though that's nice… sometimes," the actress said. "And it was never about a need to hide myself behind the characters of other people. Acting to me has always been about finding those few precious moments when I feel totally, utterly, sometimes dangerously alive. So the task has always been to find a way to get to that, to get to the work, to claw my way to it if necessary."

During her speech, Field commended other actors in the room for their own difficult journeys toward success, noting that her career's "fight, as hard as it was, was lightweight compared to some of yours."

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 26: Honoree Sally Field accepts the SAG Life Achievement Award onstage during the 29th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at Fairmont Century Plaza on February 26, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Kevin Winter/Getty

"You know what? Easy is overrated," Field continued. "I've flown on wires and surfed in the ocean, rode on horses on wagon trains and fast cars. I've had multiple personalities, worked at a textile mill, picked cotton ... I've been Mrs. Doubtfire's employer, Forrest Gump's mother, Lincoln's wife and Spider-Man's aunt," Field said, recalling some of her classic roles from her career. I've done scenes wearing 50 lbs. of period dresses, been fully clothed, semi-clothed and totally naked."

"There is not a day that I don't feel quietly thrilled to call myself an actor," she added as she finished her speech. "Thank you, thank you, thank you for this great honor, from you, the people I most wanted respect from in my life. Actors."

29th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards - Arrivals
Sally Field. Chelsea Lauren/Shutterstock for SAG Awards

SAG-AFTRA named Field the 58th recipient of the award in January. The organization describes the award as "given annually to an actor who fosters the 'finest ideals of the acting profession.'"

"Sally is an amazing actor with an enormous range and an uncanny ability to embody any character," SAG President Fran Drescher said in a statement at the time. "She has an enduring career because she is authentic in her performance and always projects likability and humanity — she just connects."

RELATED VIDEO: Sally Field Says Tom Brady Was 'Nervous' on 80 for Brady Set: 'But He Was a Natural'

More than five decades into her highly acclaimed acting career, Field most recently starred in the movies 80 for Brady and Spoiler Alert. In 2022, the actress also portrayed Jessie Buss in the HBO series Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty.

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The 2023 SAG Awards ceremony are airing live on Netflix's YouTube Channel from the Fairmont Century Plaza in Los Angeles.

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