Eastwood and Angelina Jolie at 23rd Santa Barbara Film Fest

Clint Eastwood is to receive the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s Modern Master Award, it was announced this morning. This award was first established in 1995 and since then it has been the festival’s highest honor.

Of Eastwood, Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s director Roger Durling gave this statement: “Clint Eastwood is inarguably one of our greatest directors, one of our greatest producers, and one of our greatest actors ever. To call him a Modern Master is simply an understatement.”

Clint Eastwood and wife Dina Ruiz on the red carpet during the 2008 Santa Barbara Film Festival
Paul Wellman (file)

Eastwood has led a diverse cinematic career, alternating between roles on screen and behind the scenes. He has directed widely acclaimed films that frequently feature tragic storylines, such as the 2003 drama Mystic River and the 2005 hit Million Dollar Baby, both of which won Academy Awards for best picture and best director. This pattern of hard-hitting dramas is continued with his most recent release Changeling, starring Angelina Jolie, who was honored by the film festival last year.

Previous award winners named for the 2009 festival include Penelope Cruz, Kristin Scott Thomas, and Mickey Rourke.

Eastwood will receive his award at the Arlington Theatre on Thursday, January 29, 2009. Tickets are on sale at the Lobero Theatre box office – (805) 963-0761 – and the Arlington Theatre box office – (805) 963 – 4408 – at a 20 percent discount until December 20th.


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