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Robert Altman Shocks With News of Secret Heart Transplant

Veteran film-maker Robert Altman shocked Hollywood last night when he dramatically announced, onstage at the Oscars, that he owes his life to a heart transplant operation he had 11 years ago.

The Short Cuts director jokingly insisted he is therefore technically only in his thirties, and not eligible for the Lifetime Achievement Award he picked up at the Academy Awards.

The 81-year-old said, “I’m here, I think, under false pretenses. I think I have to become straight with you.

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“Eleven years ago I had a heart transplant, a total heart transplant. I got the heart of, I think, a young woman who was in about in her late thirties. By that kind of calculation you may be giving this award too early because I think I’ve got about 40 years left.”

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