|Location||Palm Springs, California, U.S.|
Palm Springs International Film Festival (sometimes stylized shortly as PSIFF) is a film festival held in Palm Springs, California. Originally promoted by Mayor Sonny Bono and then sponsored by Nortel,:198 it started in 1989 and is held annually in January. It is run by the Palm Springs International Film Society, which also runs the Palm Springs International Festival of Short Films (ShortFest), a festival of short films and film market in June.
Michael Barker, co-president of Sony Pictures Classics, described the festival as a good place to show foreign-language movies and heralded this festival's ability to spread good word-of-mouth for movies. The event is noted for screening most foreign Oscar nominees. In 2013, the festival screened 42 of the 71 movies that were submitted by countries around the world to the Oscars for that year's foreign language film prize.
In the days before the festival's opening, several of the foreign filmmakers convene at Sunnylands, the Annenberg estate in Rancho Mirage, to trade strategies on funding, producing and promoting their movies.
The festival regularly attracts around 135,000 people, with some 70% coming from outside of the Coachella Valley, including Canada and Europe. It is noted for its Award Ceremonies where such actors as Brad Pitt, Clint Eastwood, Sean Penn, Dustin Hoffman, Anne Hathaway and Leonardo DiCaprio have appeared. In January 2011, the festival's honorees included Ben Affleck and Danny Boyle. The current director of the festival is Darryl Macdonald, long time festival director for the Seattle Film Festival.
The festival has various awards.
The Gala awards are Sonny Bono Visionary Award, Career Achievement Award, Desert Palm Achievement Award, Director of the Year Award, Frederick Loewe Award for Film Composing, Icon Award, Chairman’s Award, Ensemble Performance Award and Spotlight Award.
In 2014 the Desert Palm Achievement Award was given to Matthew McConaughey for his role in Dallas Buyers Club and Sandra Bullock for her role in Gravity, while Johnny Depp and Cate Blanchett received the Desert Palm Achievement Award in 2016 for Black Mass and Carol, respectively. Casey Affleck received the Desert Palm Achievement Award in 2017 for Manchester by the Sea. Gary Oldman and Saoirse Ronan received the Desert Palm Achievement Award in 2018 for Darkest Hour and Lady Bird.
The Festival awards are Mercedes-Benz Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature (and Runner Up narrative films), Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature (and Runner Up documentary films), FIPRESCI Award for Best Foreign Language Film, FIPRESCI Award Best Actor, FIPRESCI Award Best Actress, New Voices/New Visions Award, New Voices/New Visions Award Special Mention, Cine Latino Award (and Cine Latino Award Honorable Mention), John Schlesinger Award for Outstanding First Feature and HP Bridging the Borders Award (and HP Bridging the Borders Award Runner-up).
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