Executive director Roger Durling continues to reel in the big names from some of the hot films of 2007 for next year’s Santa Barbara Film Festival with the announcement Wednesday evening of the first ever Virtuosos Award, which will be presented to five different actors in the middle of the fest, which runs from January 24 to February 3.

Casey Affleck (Gone Baby Gone), Marion Cotillard (La Vie en Rose), James McAvoy (Atonement), Ellen Page (Juno), and Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone) will all be honored this year by the festival for distinguishing themselves through their film performances over the past year. “There will always be one or two performances that stand out, but this year in particular there were several performances by actors that truly set them apart from the pack,” Durling said in a statement. “These talented actors have proven themselves to be a strong presence on-screen, and these performances have given a glimpse at the bright future that cinema has to offer audiences for years to come.”

Tickets to the January 30 event are on-sale now and can be purchased at the festival’s website or through the Lobero (963-0761) and Arlington (963-4408) box offices. The tribute will be at the Lobero Theatre at 8 p.m.


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