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Film Festivals

ENTERTAINMENT
January 5, 2014 | By Glenn Whipp
The Palm Springs International Film Festival gala or, as Tom Hanks called it, "This little, intimate, Sonny Bono rec-room chicken dinner get-together for two-and-a-half-thousand people," took place Saturday night. Meryl Streep picked up an award. So did Hanks, Sandra Bullock, Julia Roberts, Bruce Dern and Matthew McConaughey, among others. And though they were all seated within a few feet of one another in the airport-hangar-sized Palm Springs Convention Center, these Hollywood stars were more or less allowed to eat their pot-roast dinner in peace.
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ENTERTAINMENT
December 28, 2013 | By Susan King
A small article in the Jan. 10, 1990, Los Angeles Times heralded the opening of the first Palm Springs International Film Festival, founded by then-mayor and former pop star Sonny Bono. "The mayor's first event is a modest beginning, with no world premieres, no film market and few stars scheduled to attend," stated the article. "But the event does boast a wide range of international pictures including the opening night feature 'Cinema Paradiso.' " That Italian drama directed by Giuseppe Tornatore won the festival's first Audience Award and went on to win the foreign-language film Oscar a few months later.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 20, 2013 | By Alicia Banks
Amma Asante's British film “Belle” will kick off the 25th anniversary edition of the Palm Springs International Film Festival, which runs from Jan. 3-13, and is expected to draw crowds in excess of 135,000. "Belle" follows the life of Dido Elizabeth Belle, the illegitimate mixed-race daughter of a Royal Navy captain and enslaved African woman with Gugu Mbatha-Raw in the lead role. The cast also includes Tom Wilkinson, Sarah Gadon and Tom Felton. The festival wraps up with director Roger Michell's “Le Week-End.” The film, which stars Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan, follows a married couple's trip to Paris in an attempt to rekindle their love.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 18, 2013 | By Susan King
The 25th Palm Springs International Film Festival is honoring three-time Oscar-winning actress Meryl Streep with its Icon Award. The actress, who won her Academy Awards for 1989's "Kramer Vs. Kramer," 1982's "Sophie's Choice" and 2011's "The Iron Lady," will receive the festival's honor at its awards gala Jan. 4 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. Streep has already received lead actress nominations for the Screen Actors Guild Awards, the Golden Globes and Critics' Choice Movie Awards for her performance as matriarch of a dysfunctional family in "August: Osage County," which opens Dec. 27. PHOTOS: Celebrities by The Times "We're overjoyed to recognize Meryl Streep for yet another Oscar-worthy performance in 'August: Osage County," festival chairman Harold Matzner said in a statement.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 17, 2013 | By Susan King
The 29th Santa Barbara International Film Festival announced Tuesday that Robert Redford will receive the American Riviera Award at a tribute Feb. 7 at the Arlington Theatre. The festival takes place Jan. 30 through Feb. 9. Redford, 77, has starred in such classic films as 1969's "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," 1973's "The Sting" and "The Way We Were" and won a best director Oscar for his debut feature as a filmmaker, 1980's "Ordinary People. " Redford also changed the landscape of independent cinema, establishing Sundance Institute and the Sundance Film Festival.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 16, 2013 | By Susan King
Tom Hanks is the recipient of the the 25th Palm Springs International Film Festival's Chairman's Award for his work as the leader of a ship overrun by pirates in "Captain Phillips" and as Walt Disney in "Saving Mr. Banks. " The two-time Oscar winner will receive his award Jan. 4 at the film festival's awards gala at the Palm Springs Convention Center. "Tom Hanks is one of the greatest actors of his generation," festival Chairman Harold Matzner said in a statement Monday. "In a remarkable feat that vividly illustrates the range of his talent, he portrayed two real life characters, each with a powerhouse performance in its own right.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 4, 2013
The Sundance Institute has announced the selected films for the U.S. and World Cinema dramatic and documentary competitions and the out-of-competition NEXT section of the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.  This year's festival will be held Jan. 16-26 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden and Sundance, Utah.  Following is a complete list of the films: U.S. Dramatic Competition Camp X-Ray / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Peter Sattler) -- A young woman is stationed as a guard in Guantanamo Bay, where she forms an unlikely friendship with one of the detainees.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 26, 2013 | By Susan King
Finally, a film festival for the over-50 crowd. AARP's Movies For Grownups Film Festival , opening Nov. 14 and continuing through Nov. 17 at Regal Cinemas in L.A. Live, will feature nine films with appeal to the 50-plus moviegoer that are being considered for the organization's annual Movies For Grownups Awards. The majority of the films are likely Oscar contenders, and there will be Q&As with cast and filmmakers after the screenings. PHOTOS: Behind the scenes of movies and TV "It's clear that Hollywood is paying attention to the tastes of the 50-plus moviegoer as films for grownup audiences dominate the box office this year," said AARP editorial director Myrna Blyth in a statement.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 25, 2013 | By Susan King
Oscar-winning actor Forest Whitaker ("The Last King of Scotland") is the recipient of the Santa Barbara International Film Festival's Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film. Whitaker, who is also a producer and director, will receive the honor at a black-tie gala Dec. 15 at the Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara. "Forest Whitaker is an exceptional man and actor," Kirk Douglas said in a statement. "His commitment to human causes, his passion for what is right, and his dedication to his craft are inspirational and at my age, inspiration is rare.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 25, 2013 | By Saba Hamedy
Iranians have been portrayed on the big screen as pre-Revolution radicals in “Argo,” scary, bare-chested villains in “300” and video game characters come to life in “Prince of Persia.” While these depictions can be entertaining, they're hardly the only ones out there. Disseminating alternative perspectives is the goal of the annual Noor Iranian Film Festival . The week-long gathering, which wrapped up its sixth year on Thursday, showcased a wide variety of films by Iranians - ranging from documentaries on Iran-Iraq War veterans who suffered from chemical bomb exposure (“The Skin That Burns”)
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