“Though Mr. O’Toole won many lesser awards during his career, triumph at the Academy Awards eluded him, perhaps in part because he had made no secret of his dislike of Hollywood and naturalistic acting, which he considered drab.
He was nothing if not ambitious, but success would come on his own terms, not the movie industry’s. He had made that plain at 18, when an acting career was already in his mind. In his notebook he made a promise to himself:
I will not be a common man. I will stir the smooth sands of monotony. I do not crave security. I wish to hazard my soul to opportunity.
[…] In 2003, one nomination away from setting a record among actors for the most Oscar nominations without winning — he received an honorary one for lifetime achievement.
At first reluctant to accept, fearing it would somehow signal the end of his career, Mr. O’Toole eventually agreed to the honor as something well earned. He started his acceptance speech by saying, not without a note of triumph:
Always a bridesmaid, never a bride — my foot. I have my very own Oscar now to be with me till death us do part.”
“Peter O’Toole, Star of ‘Lawrence of Arabia,’ Is Dead at 81” – New York Times – 15.12.2013