SBIFF 2023 Virtuosos Award will be held on February 15, 2023. | Credit: Courtesy

The team at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, led by Roger Durling, have proven themselves year after year to be reliable oracles of the Academy Award season, so it’s always doubly exciting to see who they have lined up for the film festival celebrity tributes. 

Announced this week, the 2023 Virtuosos Award (taking place on February 15, 2023, at 8 p.m. at the Arlington Theatre) is an honor created to recognize a group of actors whose noteworthy performances have elevated them into the national cinematic dialogue. This year’s picks are Austin Butler (Elvis), Kerry Condon (The Banshees of Inisherin), Danielle Deadwyler (Till), Nina Hoss (Tár), Stephanie Hsu (Everything Everywhere All at Once), Jeremy Pope (The Inspection), Ke Huy Quan (Everything Everywhere All at Once), and Jeremy Strong (Armageddon Time).

In what is always an entertaining night, Dave Karger of Turner Classic Movies and Entertainment Weekly moderates an evening that includes individual interviews and a panel discussion. “This year’s group of Virtuosos is unique in that they’ve all been performing for years, and in some cases, decades. It’s an impressive bunch that proves you can have a breakout moment at any point in your career. I’m sure they’ll all have memorable and inspiring stories to tell,” said Karger.

Previously announced celebrity tributes include the Maltin Modern Master Award honoring Jamie Lee Curtis on February 11, 2023, and the American Riviera Award honoring Brendan Fraser on February 14, 2023 (both at 8 p.m. at the Arlington Theatre). More tributes will be announced in the upcoming weeks.
In addition, Michelle Yeoh, whose most recent critically acclaimed performance was in the 2022 film Everything Everywhere All at Once, will receive the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s 15th annual Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film on December 9. This award is a black-tie fundraiser that benefits SBIFF’s year-round educational programs.

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