- Associated Press - Tuesday, October 18, 2011

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Nine women were honored at the annual Women in Hollywood event, yet two ladies in particular stole the show.

Viola Davis surprised her fellow honorees and an audience of Hollywood insiders Monday night by announcing she had adopted a baby girl.

And Barbra Streisand was repeatedly credited by fellow honorees such as Michelle Pfeiffer, Evan Rachel Wood, Freida Pinto, Naomi Watts and Davis for being the inspiration for their success.

It was a love fest that continued throughout the evening at the 18th annual celebration of the industry’s leading ladies sponsored by Elle magazine at the Four Seasons Hotel.

Jennifer Aniston told the 69-year-old Streisand that she loved her, and Pinto said onstage that “sharing the same oxygen” as Streisand was an incredible birthday gift. The actress turns 27 Tuesday.

“You’re a legend not only in Hollywood but literally all over the world,” the “Slumdog Millionaire” star told Streisand. “I can say that because I come from India.”

She said Streisand’s song “Putting it Together” is “like a reality check that every girl that wants to get into this big entertainment industry needs to listen to.”

“That was a truly inspirational song, so thank you so much for that,” Pinto said.

Oscar-winning director Kathryn Bigelow introduced Streisand as “a world icon” and “somebody who has mastered virtually every art form imaginable: directing, acting, composing, singing, producing, writing.”

Streisand returned the love in kind, congratulating her fellow honorees, which also included actress Elizabeth Olsen and DreamWorks Studios chief Stacey Snider.

“They’re all so charming, so well spoken, and so thin,” Streisand said, adding, “I ate the chocolate cake.”

(Also on the menu: Alaskan halibut and a roasted peach salad.)

Streisand said that only seven percent of the top 250 films were directed by women and she urged her colleagues to be fearless about moving forward in the entertainment industry.

“Let’s be bold and don’t wait for the phone to ring,” she said. “Create your own material. Tell me a story.”

The love didn’t stop with Streisand. Olsen said Pfeiffer inspired her to become an actress, and Reese Witherspoon said Aniston had “sex appeal and complete lovability.”

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