ROBERT ZEMECKIS TO RECEIVE DIRECTOR OF THE YEAR AWARD AT 24th ANNUAL PALM SPRINGS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL AWARDS GALA
The 24th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) will present Academy Award® winning director Robert Zemeckis with the Director of the Year Award for Flight. Presented by Cartier, the Awards Gala will be held Saturday, January 5, at the Palm Springs Convention Center. Hosted by Mary Hart, the Awards Gala will also present awards to previously announced honorees Helen Hunt and Naomi Watts. The Festival runs January 3-14.
“For 35 years, Robert Zemeckis has been creating some of the most iconic and indelible images in cinema, garnering international acclaim as a filmmaker of extraordinary vision,” said Film Festival Chairman Harold Matzner. “In his latest work, Flight, Zemeckis continues to tell fascinating stories by combining strong characters with groundbreaking visual effects, which includes one of the most memorable plane crashes in cinematic history, while following the compelling emotional journey of Denzel Washington’s character of an emotionally damaged man dealing with addiction. For these achievements the Palm Springs International Film Festival is honored to present the 2013 Director of the Year Award to Robert Zemeckis.”
Past Director of the Year honorees include Stephen Daldry, Ang Lee, Anthony Minghella, Alexander Payne, Sean Penn, Jason Reitman and David O. Russell.
Currently in theatres, Paramount Pictures’ dramatic thriller Flight, stars Denzel Washington as Captain Whip Whitaker, a seasoned airline pilot who miraculously crash lands his plane after a mid-air catastrophe, saving nearly every soul on board. Afterwards, Whip is hailed as a hero, but as more is learned, more questions than answers arise as to who or what was really at fault and what really happened on that plane. Directed by Robert Zemeckis and written by John Gatins, the film also stars Don Cheadle, Kelly Reilly, John Goodman, Bruce Greenwood, Brian Geraghty, Tamara Tunie, Nadine Velazquez, James Badge Dale and Melissa Leo.
Robert Zemeckis won an Academy Award®, a Golden Globe and a Director’s Guild of America Award for Best Director for the hugely successful Forrest Gump. The film’s numerous honors also included Academy Awards® for Best Actor (Tom Hanks) and Best Picture. Zemeckis has also directed Cast Away, What Lies Beneath, Back to the Future, Back to the Future, Part II and Part III, Contact, Used Cars, Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, The Polar Express, Beowulf and A Christmas Carol. Presently, Zemeckis is at work on Yellow Submarine, for Image Movers Digital and The Disney Studios.
About The Palm Springs International Film Festival
The Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) is one of the largest film festivals in North America, welcoming 135,000 attendees each year for its lineup of new and celebrated international features and documentaries. The Festival is also known for its annual Black Tie Awards Gala, honoring the best achievements of the filmic year by a celebrated list of talents who, in recent years, have included Ben Affleck, Javier Bardem, Cate Blanchett, Danny Boyle, George Clooney, Daniel Day-Lewis, Leonardo DiCaprio, Clint Eastwood, Ron Howard, Sean Penn, Brad Pitt, Natalie Portman, Charlize Theron and Kate Winslet.
The 24th annual Palm Springs International FilmFestival is presented by Title Sponsor, the City of Palm Springs, which is celebrating its 75 year anniversary in 2013. Presenting Sponsors are Spencer’s, The Desert Sun, Entertainment Tonight, Wells Fargo, Regal Entertainment Group, Bank of America and Wintec. Major sponsors are Panavision, Ocean Properties Development, Raymond Lawrence, Chihuly, Telefilm Canada. The Festival’s Awards Gala is presented by Cartier and sponsored by Mercedes-Benz.