Denzel Washington is set to receive the Maltin Modern Master Award at the 32nd annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival. Washington will be honored for his longstanding contributions to the film industry culminating with Paramount’s upcoming Fences, a story adapted from August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name. Washington directs, produces and stars in the saga about a 1950s Pittsburgh sanitation worker and former Negro League baseball player, Troy Maxson (Washington), as he deals with racism while struggling to provide for his family.
Fences hits theatres on Christmas Day.
Leonard Maltin, for whom the award was recently renamed after, will return for his 26th year to moderate the evening. The award will be presented on Thursday, February 2, 2017 at Santa Barbara’s historic Arlington Theatre.
SBIFF Executive Director Roger Durling stated, “Denzel Washington directing, producing and acting in Fences defines the Modern Master for the 21st Century.”
The Modern Master Award was established in 1995 and is the highest accolade presented by SBIFF. Created to honor an individual who has enriched our culture through accomplishments in the motion picture industry, it was re-named the Maltin Modern Master Award in 2015 in honor of long-time SBIFF moderator and renowned film critic Leonard Maltin. Past recipients include Michael Keaton, Bruce Dern, Ben Affleck, Christopher Plummer, Christopher Nolan, James Cameron, Clint Eastwood, Cate Blanchett, Will Smith, George Clooney and Peter Jackson.