Palm Springs Film Fest: Robert Duvall, Alejandro G. Inarritu Join List of Honorees

Duvall, the star of 'The Judge,' will receive the fest's Icon Award, while Inarritu, the co-writer and director of 'Birdman,' will receive its Director of the Year Award
Claire Folger/Warner Bros. Entertainment
Robert Downey Jr. and Robert Duvall in 'The Judge'

The Judge's supporting actor Robert Duvall will receive this year's Icon Award and Birdman's co-writer and director Alejandro G. Inarritu will receive this year's Director of the Year Award at the Palm Springs International Film Festival's 26th annual Awards Gala on Jan. 3, PSIFF announced on Friday. The fest will run Jan. 2-12.

Duvall, who plays the title character in The Judge — an elderly man who must turn to his lawyer-son for help after being accused of a crime he is unsure if he committed — has already received SAG, Golden Globe and Critics' Choice noms for his performance. He won an Oscar for Tender Mercies (1983) and was previously recognized at PSIFF in 2011 with the fest's Career Achievement Award. Previous recipients of PSIFF's Icon Award include Meryl Streep and Michael Douglas.

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"Duvall gives an outstanding and amazingly realistic performance as Judge Joseph Palmer,” PSIFF chairman Harold Matzner said in a statement. “This is sure to be remembered in his long list of iconic character roles."

Inarritu, who has said that Birdman is a semiautobiographical project, has already received Golden Globe and Critics' Choice noms for co-writing and directing the film. He previously received PSIFF's Director of the Year Award in 2007 for his work on Babel (2006). Other previous recipients of the PSIFF prize include Steve McQueen for 12 Years a Slave (2013), Robert Zemeckis for Flight (2012), Stephen Daldry for Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (2011), David O. Russell for The Fighter (2010), Jason Reitman for Up in the Air (2009), Sean Penn for Into the Wild (2007) and Alexander Payne for Sideways (2004).

"By creating the illusion that the film was shot in one take and directing award-worthy performances by Michael Keaton, Edward Norton, Emma Stone and a star-studded cast, Inarritu has created a brilliant and original dark comedy," Matzner said in a statement.

The fest previously announced that Selma will be its opening night film and that The Imitation Game will receive this year's Ensemble Performance Award, Boyhood's writer-director Richard Linklater will receive this year's Visionary Award, Wild's lead actress Reese Witherspoon will receive this year's Chairman's Award, The Theory of Everything's lead actor Eddie Redmayne and Still Alice's lead actress Julianne Moore will receive this year's Desert Palm Achievement awards, that Whiplash's supporting actor J.K. Simmons will receive this year's Spotlight Award and that Selma's David Oyelowo and Gone Girl's lead actress Rosamund Pike will receive this year's Breakthrough Performance awards.

Twitter: @ScottFeinberg

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