The excitement is mounting as the Palm Springs International Film Society gets prepared to launch the 2009 Palm Springs International Film Festival from January 6-19 2009. This year's line- up of films is like none ever. The festival schedule is packed full of great events and great films. This year's festival is sure to launch a year of great award winning films containing veteran actors and newbies alike. From international Oscar winning starts and directors to aspiring independent film makers this year's Palms Springs International Film Festival has it all. Film lovers of all kinds will be sure to have the time of their lives this year.
It all starts with at Palm Springs High School at 6:30pm with a Gala Screening of Last Chance Harvey starring Dustin Hoffman and Emma Thompson who both received Golden Globe nominations for their performance in this film directed by Joel Hopkins. After the screening the first of many gala receptions will be held at the Palm Springs Art Museum where many of the industries brightest and most brilliant stars will mingle and enjoy discussion of the film and the rest of the festival. It's sure to be a grand opening for this prestigious and anticipated event.
The opening gala screening is just the first of many austere and glamorous events scheduled for the Festival. There will be something exciting everyday of the festival as all these great films are screened and reviewed by the most esteemed people in the film industry. One of the biggest and most exciting events is the Black Tie Gala which will be held Tuesday January 6th 2009 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. The Black Tie Gala is the most spectacular night of the year in Palm Springs and is attended by all the biggest names in show business. Sponsored by Cartier and hosted by Mary Hart of Entertainment Tonight this red carpet, black tie event is quintessential Hollywood glamour. The honorees this year include a seasoned Hollywood legend whose six decade career is legendary. There is also a newcomer whose celebrity will no doubt be kicked off in Palm Springs this year.
One of the very special events added onto the festival calendar for the first time this year is a Student Screening Day. These free screenings will be held for Coachella High School students as well as college and extension program students on January 7th and are part of the Society's year round Educational Outreach Program. The films the students will be screening were chosen because of their educational qualities and feature both documentaries and narratives. The morning session will be held for High School students at the Palm Springs High School and the evening session will take place at Regal Cinemas for high school, college and extension program students and parents. It's bound to spark a great new tradition for the festival and will be an eye opening and enlightening experience for the students.
With all the special events going on this year's festival is certain to be one of the best in the twenty year history of the event. There are a total of 209 films that will be screened this year and you can be sure to see the biggest and brightest stars attending this prestigious event. And, a lot of those stars are set to receive the Society's biggest awards. Sean Penn is set to receive the 2009 Desert Palms Achievement Award. Frieda Pinto will be honored with the 2009 Breakthrough award for her work. Also, honored will be Dustin Hoffman, Gus Van Sant, Alexandre Desplat and many more of your favorite and most accomplished film actors and directors including Dakota Fanning, Clint Eastwood, Ron Howard, Anne Hathaway the list goes on and on! Almost as long as the list of films!
Also, happening at the Festival this year is a twenty year anniversary retrospective of all the past years highlighting the continued and sustained success of the Festival. This is sure to be a fun and interesting event. People will be talking about this event for years to come. It is amazing that it has been twenty years already and the Society shows no sign of slowing down. Each year the festival has grown and evolved into the gem it is now. The anniversary screening will show how each and every year the film festival melded itself and morphed into the gala event it has become. These past twenty years have culminated into the film industry's most anticipated annual event.
As usual, you will see a little bit of everything in this year's film line up. There are films from all over the world that are sure to knock your socks off. No matter what genre or film type, there is something for every film lover. Each one of the 209 films featured is a work of art in its own right. There will be history making films coming out of Palm Springs this year for sure and certainly everyone will be reading about them in the papers throughout the festival and after as well.
There will be plenty of workshops and seminars at the 2009 Palm Springs International Film Festival for aspiring film makers as well as those just looking for a refresher course or keep up with all the latest industry developments. The seminars and film events at the festival are conducted by the most talented people in show business. From directors to critics the cream of the crop will be teaching at Palm Springs this year. There are sure to be some mind blowing things to be learned from these seasoned denizens of show business. If you are in the business, attending these seminars can be the best thing you ever do.
Let's not forget all the networking opportunities at this year's festivals.
The social aspect of the festival is world renown as the event of events in Palm Springs. The entire valley ruminates with the buzz of gala parties and awards presentations. The entire town comes out for the festival and the meeting of minds at the festival is truly amazing. Everyone who is anyone in the film industry will be at Palm Springs. And, lots of new legends will be discovered at the festival as well. The stars of today yesterday and the future all attend the festival to celebrate their craft and regal their peers with the appreciation and recognition they deserve.
It may interesting to note that the festival was founded by Sonny Bono when he was Mayor of Palm Springsback in 1990 and has become the biggest film festival in North America. The festival has been known to be one of the best venues for marketing academy award winners. The Black Tie Gala over the years has developed into such a large event that it is covered by every national TV news outlet. It also is covered by over 1000 newspapers and countless internet websites. It is has indeed become the film event of the year for the industry and is well worth the time and effort to be a participant on any level. The public is invited to the event as well as industry folks so anyone can get a glimpse of the genius of Hollywood and the people who make it.