Currently starring as Wakanda’s Queen Ramonda in ‘Wakanda Forever,’ Angela Bassett (on throne) will be honored by Santa Barbara International Film Festival on February 9, 2023. | Credit: Disney

The star-studded Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) got even starrier with this week’s announcement that Angela Bassett will be honored with the Montecito Award on Thursday, February 9, 2023 at an in-person conversation about her career leading up to this year’s performance in Marvel Studios’ Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. The critically acclaimed actress originated the role of Ramonda, the queen of the fictional African nation of Wakanda and one of many Marvel characters introduced in director Ryan Coogler’s 2018 comic-book blockbuster.

Her powerful performance in the sequel to that film became even more substantial following some rewriting of story as a result of the death of Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman in 2020. “Ms. Bassett has had an illustrious career as an actor, director, and producer and in Wakanda Forever reminds us why she’s so greatly revered,” says SBIFF Executive Director Roger Durling.  “She’s regal, fierce, and commanding as Queen Ramonda. We bow down.” 

Bassett’s films include Malcolm X, Boyz in the Hood, Waiting to Exhale, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, and What’s Love Got to Do with It, among others. 

She joins a prestigious roster of Montecito Award recipients, including Penélope Cruz, Amanda Seyfried, Lupita Nyong’o, Melissa McCarthy, Saoirse Ronan, Isabelle Huppert, Sylvester Stallone, Jennifer Aniston, Oprah Winfrey, Daniel Day-Lewis, Geoffrey Rush, Julianne Moore, Kate Winslet, Naomi Watts, and Javier Bardem.

Passes and tickets for the 2023 SBIFF are on sale now at

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