Santa Barbara Film Fest: Warren Beatty to Receive Kirk Douglas Award

Warren Beatty GETTY - H 2016
Jeff Vespa/Getty Images for ELLE

Warren Beatty, the legendary actor and director who will return to the silver screen after a 15-year absence on Nov. 23 with Rules Don't Apply, a period-piece dramedy he wrote, directed, produced and stars in, has been chosen as the 11th recipient of the Santa Barbara International Film Festival's Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film.

The honor will be presented to the 79-year-old on Dec. 1 at a black-tie gala dinner at the Bacara Resort and Spa in Santa Barbara — possibly by Douglas himself, who will turn 100 on Dec. 9 — with all proceeds going to SBIFF's free year-round educational programs.

"Warren Beatty upholds the highest artistic standards of the film industry," Douglas said Monday in a statement. "His choice of material has entertained us as well as made us think more deeply about the world we live in. I'm delighted he is accepting this recognition of his extraordinary talent."

Beatty is best known for his starring roles in Splendor in the Grass (1961), Bonnie and Clyde (1967), Shampoo (1975), Heaven Can Wait (1978), Reds (1981), Bugsy (1991), Dick Tracy (1990) and Bulworth (1998). He won the best director Oscar for Reds and was presented with the Academy's Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award in 2000.

Past recipients of SBIFF's Kirk Douglas Award, which goes "to a lifelong contributor to cinema through their work in front of the camera, behind, or both," include Douglas, John Travolta, Ed Harris, Quentin Tarantino, Harrison Ford, Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Forest Whitaker, Jessica Lange and, last year, Jane Fonda.

The 32nd Santa Barbara International Film Festival is set to run Feb. 1-11.