Judy Garland's Children to Honor Late Mother at the Academy Awards
By Connor Durkin
Lorna Luft & Liza Minnelli at the Luft's 2013 Pink Party in New York City | Getty Images
Flying monkeys, the Munchkins, and the one-and-only Judy Garland hit the silver screen 75 years ago in the beyond-iconic film The Wizard of Oz. To celebrate and recognize its impact on cinema, the children of the film's leading star will assemble at the 86th Academy Awards, airing this Sunday.
Now on good terms, Liza Minnelli, Lorna Luft, and Joey Luft are excited to pay tribute to their late mother and her quintessential role, according to The Hollywood Reporter. While The Wizard of Oz scored two Oscars, the Academy did not nominate Garland for the top acting prize, as she was only 17 at the time. Instead, she received the Academy Juvenile Award, a long-gone accolade that was given to actors under the age of 18. The statuette stood just 7 inches and replicated the adult-sized Oscar.
Yet, walking down the yellow brick road as Dorthy secured both Garland and her children fame for three-quarters of a century. She later earned two Oscar nods for her work in A Star Is Born and Judgement at Nuremberg. The full-sized prize never reached the pint-sized Garland, but she managed to secure Grammy and Golden Globe wins within her short life.
Unlike her mother, Liza Minnelli has won award after award and is one of the few actors ever to score an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony, often abbreviated as EGOT. Liza's Oscar recognized her work in the all-time gay-favorite Cabaret, which came to theaters in 1972. To this day, she remains active, appearing in Arrested Development, Smash, and, yes, Sex and the City 2.
Liza was the product of Garland's second marriage to celebrated director Vincent Minnelli. The relationship, like another three of Garland's five marriages, ended with divorce. The 4-foot-11 actress's longest marriage lasted just under 13 years, and was to Sidney Luft. The two's children, Lorna and Joey, never matched their sister's level of fame. Lorna can be seen Paulette Rebchucke in the classic failure Grease 2. The sisters performed together during Luft's Pink Party in 2013.
Modern legend Ellen DeGeneres returns to her hosting duties for this year's Oscars. Yet many of this years's nominated films address gay and transgender issues, meaning Ellen and Liza found only a small portion of our excitement for the big night.