Allison Janney to receive Palm Springs Spotlight Award – Actress

Posted by Larry Gleeson

The 29th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) will present Allison Janney with the Spotlight Award – Actress at its annual Film Awards Gala for her performance in I, Tonya. The Film Awards Gala, hosted by Mary Hart, will be held Tuesday, January 2 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. The Festival runs January 2-15, 2018.


Allison Janney portrays Tonya Harding’s mother, LaVona Harding, in the indie sensationalized portrait of the Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan figure skating incident, I, Tonya.

“Allison Janney delivers a knock-out performance as Tonya Harding’s mother LaVona Golden in I, Tonya. The usually charming Janney takes a compellingly dark turn as Tonya’s abusive, alcoholic mother,” said Festival Chairman Harold Matzner. “For this outstanding performance, which is sure to garner awards attention, it is an honor to present Allison Janney with the Spotlight Award.”


Past recipients of the Spotlight Award include Amy Adams, Jessica Chastain, Bryan Cranston, Andrew Garfield, Helen Hunt, Rooney Mara, Julia Roberts and J.K. Simmons. All recipients received Academy Award® nominations in the year they were honored, with Simmons winning an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.  Janney joins previously announced 2018 honorees Timothée Chalamet, Gal Gadot, Gary Oldman and Sam Rockwell.

Based on unbelievable yet true events, I, Tonya is a darkly comedic tale of American figure skater Tonya Harding and one of the most sensational scandals in sports history. The first American woman to complete a triple-axel in competition, Harding’s legacy was instead defined by her association with an ill-conceived, crudely executed attack on fellow Olympic competitor Nancy Kerrigan. Featuring an iconic turn by Margot Robbie as the fiery Harding, a mustachioed Sebastian Stan as her impetuous ex-husband Jeff Gillooly, and a tour-de-force performance from Allison Janney as her acid-tongued mother, LaVona, Craig Gillespie’s I, Tonya is an absurd, irreverent and piercing portrayal of Harding’s life and career.  NEON/30WEST is releasing the film.

Allison Janney currently stars alongside Anna Faris in the CBS/Chuck Lorre hit comedy Mom. Janney also received rave reviews for her turn as Margaret Scully on Showtime’s Masters of Sex. She won Emmys for both roles in the same year and won a second Emmy for Mom the following year.  Adding the four Emmys she previously won during her run on The West Wing, Janney has a total of seven ATAS statues to her name. Her recently released movies include Tallulah, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, The Girl on the Train, Minions and Spy. Other film credits include The Way, Way Back, The Help, Juno, Hairspray, Finding Nemo, The Hours, American Beauty, Nurse Betty, Drop Dead Gorgeous, 10 Things I Hate About You, Primary Colors, The Ice Storm, The Object of My Affection and Big Night.

About The Palm Springs International Film Festival

The Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) is one of the largest film festivals in North America, welcoming 135,000 attendees last year for its lineup of new and celebrated international features and documentaries. The Festival is also known for its annual Film Awards Gala, a glamorous, black-tie event attended by 2,500, presented this year by American Express and sponsored by Cadillac and Entertainment Tonight.  The Film Awards Gala honors the year’s best achievements in cinema in front of and behind the camera.  The celebrated list of talents who have been honored in recent years includes Ben Affleck, Javier Bardem, Cate Blanchett, Sandra Bullock, Bradley Cooper, George Clooney, Daniel Day-Lewis, Leonardo DiCaprio, Clint Eastwood, Tom Hanks, Nicole Kidman, Matthew McConaughey, Julianne Moore, Brad Pitt, Eddie Redmayne, Julia Roberts, Meryl Streep and Reese Witherspoon.


(Source: PSIFF press release)

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