Ryan Gosling To Receive SBIFF’s Kirk Douglas Award For Excellence In Film

Earlier today Ryan Gosling’s showcase song in Barbie, “I’m Just Ken” was nominated for a Grammy, and now proving that the versatile star is a lot more than “just Ken”, he has been named recipient of the 16th Annual Kirk Douglas Award For Excellence In Film presented by the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

The award, which benefits Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s year-round educational programs, will be presented on Saturday January 13, 2024 at a black-tie dinner at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara. In addition to continuing the tradition of this award named for the legendary star, this marks the second time since the passing of Douglas that the honor will be awarded.

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“Ryan Gosling has long been both a dramatic and comedic force in front of the camera. This year, thanks to his universally hailed, triumphant performance as Ken in Barbie – a film that truly demanded the attention of critics and moviegoers around the world – he has become a true cinematic powerhouse,” stated Executive Director, Roger Durling.

Gosling is a two-time Academy Award nominee for his work in Half Nelson and La La Land, and a four-time Golden Globe nominee and one-time winner for his role as Sebastian in La La Land. Over the course of his decades-spanning career, Gosling has additionally garnered numerous accolades, including winning a Film Independent Spirit Award, a National Board of Review Award and more, as well as nominations from BAFTA and the Screen Actors Guild. He has received recognition from numerous prestigious critics’ associations and prominent film festivals worldwide, from Cannes to Palm Springs to Sundance, and has previously been recognized by SBIFF as Outstanding Performer of the Year in 2017 for his performance in La La Land, and the Cinema Vanguard Award in 2008 for his work in Lars and the Real Girl. Amongst other titles, Gosling’s diverse filmography includes acclaimed films such as Derek Cianfrance’s Blue Valentine, Nicolas Winding Refn’s Drive, Glenn Ficarra & John Requa’s Crazy, Stupid, Love, Adam McKay’s The Big Short and Denis Villeneuve’s Blade Runner 2049. He will next be seen in The Fall Guy, starring opposite Emily Blunt and directed by David Leitch.

Since 2006, the annual Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film has been awarded to a lifelong contributor to cinema through their work in front of the camera, behind, or both. Past honorees are Michelle Yeoh, Martin Scorsese, Hugh Jackman, Dame Judi Dench, Warren Beatty, Jane Fonda, Jessica Lange, Forest Whitaker, Robert De Niro, Michael Douglas, Harrison Ford, Quentin Tarantino, Ed Harris, and John Travolta.

The 39th Santa Barbara International Film Festival will take place February 7 – February 17, 2024. Official events including screenings, filmmaker Q&As, industry panels, and celebrity tributes, which will be held throughout the city, including at the historic Arlington Theatre.

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