Cinequest Festival to Honor Harrison Ford With Maverick Spirit Award

FILM: Harrison Ford

Harrison Ford (UTA, Ziffren Brittenham) and Abigail Breslin (ICM, Untitled, Lichter Grossman) have joined "Ender's Game," the Summit/OddLot sci-fi adaptation of the novel by Orson Scott Card. Asa Butterfield ("Hugo") stars. Gavin Hood wrote the script and is directing.

Author Salman Rushdie will also be honored at the two week event in San Jose, which includes 85 movie premieres from 48 countries.

Harrison Ford and Salman Rushdie will be honored with Maverick Spirit Awards at the 23rd Cinequest Film Festival when it is held in San Jose from Feb. 26 to March 10.

The award is given to those who are known for “standing out from the crowd, daring to create and innovate with a personal yet global vision,” according to the festival’s announcement. “It is this spirit that sums up the best of the worlds of cinema and Silicon Valley.”

Ford, known for such films as Star Wars, Indiana Jones and Witness,  will be honored on March 3 at an event moderated by Jennifer Siebel Newsom, CEO of Girls Club Entertainment and director of Miss Representation. Ford’s last movie in theaters was Cowboys & Aliens.

Ford is cited for being “one of cinema’s most iconic actors, approaching his art with a brilliant array of integrity, commitment, profound charisma, and authority.”

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 Rushdie is the British Indian novelist and essayist whose fourth novel The Satanic Verses (1988) was the center of a major controversy, which provoked protests from Muslims in several countries and led to death threats against him. His latest novel, Luka and The Fire of Life, was published in November 2010. His book Joseph Anton: A Memori was published in September 2012.

Past recipients of the Maverick Spirit Award include J.J. Abrams, Kevin Spacey, William H. Macy, Gus Van Sant, Spike Lee and Alec Baldwin.

There will be eighty-five World, North American and U.S. premieres from 48 countries including opening night’s film Ginger & Rosa, a coming of age story which stars Christina Hendricks, Oliver Pratt, Alice Englert, Annette Bening and Elle Fanning.

The festival is also showing recent films and digitally restored movies such as David Lean’s Lawrence of Arabia, Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver, and Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove.

There is also a section called “Thrill films” which includes Chris Penn’s Aftermath and Eden, starring Jamie Chung in an intense tale of a kidnapped woman fighting against all odds to save herself. 

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“Laugh ‘til it hurts” is Cinequest’s goal when it comes to their comedy line up that includes The Kitchen starring Laura Prepon (That 70’s Show) and Dreama Walker (Don’t Trust the B----- in Apartment 23).

A program called “Life” includes Emperor staring Tommy Lee Jones and Matthew Fox, centered on a weighty decision General Douglas MacArthur made when Japanese Emperor Hirohito surrendered to the Allied Forces, marking the end of WWII. 

There is also a program called “Love” that includes Sweet Talk, staring Natalie Zea, where an unexpected phone call leads to unlikely destination and proof that romance can be as true as you want it to be.