French filmmaker Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist) will receive the Sonny Bono Visionary Award and Michelle Williams (My Week with Marilyn) will receive the Desert Palm Achievement Actress Award at the 2012 Palms Springs International Film Festival, running January 5-16, 2012. Other honorees for the Awards Gala on January 7, 2012, include George Clooney and Glenn Close. From the official press releases:
The 23rd annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) will present Michelle Williams with the Desert Palm Achievement Actress Award. Presented by Cartier, the Awards Gala will be held Saturday, January 7, at the Palm Springs Convention Center. Hosted by Mary Hart, the Awards Gala will also present awards to previously announced honorees George Clooney and Glenn Close. The Festival runs January 5-16.
“Every generation, the cinema has a few performers who mesmerize audiences with an exceptional blend of talent, versatility and grace,” said Festival Chairman Harold Matzner. “Michelle Williams epitomizes these qualities as she continues to accept challenging role after challenging role. In her latest work, My Week with Marilyn, she perfectly captures the glamour and vulnerability of the iconic Marilyn Monroe who finds respite and solice during a week-long hiatus from Hollywood pressures. To this actress, a cinematic star in her own right, the Palm Springs International Film Festival is proud to present the 2012 Desert Palm Achievement Actress Award.”
Williams will next be seen starring in Simon Curtis’ My Week with Marilyn. In the summer of 1956, Colin Clark works as an assistant on the British set of The Prince and the Showgirl, which stars Laurence Olivier and Marilyn Monroe, who is also on honeymoon with her new husband, playwright Arthur Miller. When Miller leaves the country, Clark introduces Monroe to British life and they spend a week together, during which time she escapes from her Hollywood routine and the pressures of work. My Week with Marilyn is directed by Simon Curtis. Screenplay by Adrian Hodges, based on Colin Clark’s diaries, The Prince, The Showgirl and Me and My Week with Marilyn. The Weinstein Company film is directed by Simon Curtis and also stars Eddie Redmayne, Kenneth Branagh and Judi Dench.
Williams was last seen in Derek Cianfrance’s Blue Valentine opposite Ryan Gosling. Williams’ captivating performance earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress as well as Golden Globe and Broadcast Film Critics Association nominations and her fourth Independent Spirit Award nomination.
Williams’ performance in Ang Lee’s Brokeback Mountain, released in 2005, earned her a Broadcast Film Critics Association Award as well as an Independent Spirit Award, SAG, Golden Globe, BAFTA and Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Following, Williams was nominated for a 2007 Independent Spirit Award for Best Actress for her performance in Wim Wenders’ Land of Plenty. In her first collaboration with Kelly Reichardt on her critically acclaimed independent film Wendy and Lucy, Williams’ moving and evocative performance as “Wendy” garnered a Toronto Film Critics Award for Best Actress in 2009 and her third Independent Spirit Award Nomination.
Williams’ other film credits include Meek’s Cutoff, The Station Agent, Shutter Island, Incendiary, Synecdoche, New York, I’m Not There, The Hottest State and Me Without You. Williams is currently in production on Sam Raimi’s OZ: The Great and the Powerful, opposite James Franco, where she stars as Glinda the Good Witch.
Past recipients of the Desert Palm Achievement Award include Natalie Portman, Anne Hathaway, Halle Berry, Marion Cotillard, Charlize Theron, Naomi Watts and Kate Winslet.
The 23rd annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) will present acclaimed French filmmaker Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist) with the Sonny Bono Visionary Award during its annual Awards Gala. Presented by Cartier, the Gala will be held Saturday, January 7 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. Hosted by Mary Hart, the Awards Gala will also present awards to previously announced honorees George Clooney, Glenn Close and Michelle Williams.
“Director Michel Hazanavicius boldly takes us back in time and reacquaints modern-day audiences with the magical power of black and white silent cinema to capture our hearts and our imaginations in The Artist,” said Festival Chairman Harold Matzner. “The film opened to rave reviews at its premiere in Cannes and will continue to be one of the films to watch throughout awards season as a leading best picture contender. For his creative innovation in filmmaking The Palm Springs International Film Festival is proud to present Michel Hazanavicius with the Sonny Bono Visionary Award.”
Past recipients of the Sonny Bono Visionary Award include Danny Boyle, Quentin Tarantino, Baz Luhrmann, M. Night Shyamalan, Gus Van Sant and Joe Wright.
The Artist takes place in Hollywood between 1927 and 1932 and focuses on a declining male film star and a rising actress, as silent cinema grows out of fashion and is replaced by talking pictures. The Weinstein Company presents The Artist, written and directed by Michel Hazanavicius and produced by Thomas Langmann. Starring Jean Dujardin, Bérénice Bejo, John Goodman, James Cromwell, Penelope Ann Miller, Malcolm McDowell, Missi Pyle, Beth Grant, Ed Lauter, Koel Murray and Ken Davitan.
Hazanavicius first broke through as a feature filmmaker with his 2006 comedy OSS 117 – Cairo, Nest of Spies, a spoof starring Jean Dujardin. Hazanavicius and Dujardin reteamed three years later for the hit sequel OSS 117 – Lost in Rio. Hazanavicius made his feature directorial debut in 1999 with Mes Amies (My Friends), which he also wrote. He began his career as a director in television. He made the move into feature films in 1994, when he made his acting debut in Fear City: A Family-Style Comedy (La Cité de la Peur). Two years later, he transitioned into feature writing as well, with credits including the comedies Delphine 1, Yvan 0; The Clone (Le Clone) and Lucky Luke and the Daltons.