'The Help's' Octavia Spencer to Receive the Palm Springs Film Festival's Breakthrough Performance Award

Octavia Spencer
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The Help co-star Octavia Spencer spoke about THR’s mentoring program at the event.

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Octavia Spencer will be recognized with the Palm Springs Film Festival’s Breakthrough Performance Award for her role in The Help.

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“Octavia Spencer is a consummate actress who seamlessly blends her dramatic and comedic talents, creating performances of uncommon depth,” festival chairman Harold Matzner said in announcing the honor, which will be presented at the fest’s Awards Gala on Jan. 7 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. “As the irascible Minny in The Help, she captures the essence of awoman who deals with life head on, relishing confrontation and serving as a source of courage and humor for those whom she loves.”

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Spencer made her big-screen debut in Joel Schumacher's A Time to Kill in 1995. Her credits also include Dinner for Schmucks, The Soloist, Seven Pounds, Bad Santa, Spiderman and Being John Malkovich.

The 23rd annual Palm Springs International Film Festival runs from Jan. 5-16.