Palm Springs Film Fest: 'Spotlight' Filmmaker Tom McCarthy to Get Visionary Award

Tom McCarthy - Portrait - 2011

Tom McCarthy, the actor-turned-indie filmmaker whose latest work is investigative drama Spotlight, has been tapped by the Palm Springs International Film Festival for its Sonny Bono Visionary Award.

The 49-year-old will pick up the honor during the 27th annual PSIFF Awards Gala on Jan. 2. The fest is set to run Jan. 1-11.

"Spotlight [is] a remarkable film that creates cinematic tension between two institutions as The Boston Globe investigates the Catholic Church," said PSIFF chairman Harold Matzner. "For his expert storytelling of this subject matter, the Palm Springs International Film Festival is proud to present Tom McCarthy with the Sonny Bono Visionary Award.”

Previous recipients of the honor include Tom Hooper, Danny Boyle, Quentin Tarantino, Richard Linklater and Michel Hazanavicius.

In addition to Spotlight, McCarthy's directing credits include The Station Agent, The Visitor, Win Win and The Cobbler, all of which he also wrote or co-wrote. He also co-wrote Pete Docter's Up, for which he received his sole Oscar nomination.

The fest previously announced that Black Mass lead actor Johnny Depp will receive its Desert Palm Achievement Award (Actor); Carol and Truth lead actress Cate Blanchett will receive its Desert Palm Achievement Award (Actress); Room lead actress Brie Larson will receive its Breakthrough Performance Award; and Brooklyn lead actress Saoirse Ronan will receive its International Star Award.

The event will announce its other honorees in the coming weeks.