In a year distinguished by a large number of strong films and noteworthy performances, the Santa Barbara International Film Festival has super-sized its annual “Virtuosos” tribute to honor seven different actors for their breakthrough performances in 2013.
The honorees range from 19-year-old Adele Exarchopoulos (“Blue Is the Warmest Color”) to 83-year-old June Squibb (“Nebraska”), and also include Daniel Bruhl from “Rush,” Oscar Isaac from “Inside Llewyn Davis,” Michael B. Jordan from “Fruitvale Station,” Brie Larson from “Short Term 12” and Jared Leto from “Dallas Buyers Club.”
In past years, SBIFF has saluted up to six performers in its Virtuosos program, with recent honorees including Carey Mulligan, Hailee Steinfeld, Andy Serkis, Shailene Woodley, Demian Bechir, Quvenzhane Wallis, Rooney Mara and Patton Oswalt.
This is the first year the festival has ever included seven honorees, as a nod to what SBIFF Executive Director Roger Durling called “a banner year for movies” in the press release announcing the honors. The seven honorees are “a vital representation of what made those films so triumphant,” added Durling.
The program will take place on Feb. 4, 2014 at the Arlington Theatre in Santa Barbara.
The festival itself runs from Jan. 30 through Feb. 9 in the coastal town north of Los Angeles, placing it in the key time between the Jan. 16 announcement of Oscar nominations and the Feb. 14 start of final voting.
With a number of Academy members calling Santa Barbara home, and a large contingent of press and industry making the trek up the coast, SBIFF’s tributes are used by studios and campaigners to increase the visibility of their contenders. Because it is announced well before Oscar nominations, the Virtuosos program typically consists of a mixture of nominees and those who were passed over.
Tickets and festival passes are currently available at www.sbfilmfestival.org.