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Kingsley and Tornatore Feted At Ischia Fest

Thursday, July 5------The Ischia Global Film and Music Fest, which begins on Monday, July 9th, is honoring two giants of the film world with the Ischia Legend Awards. Oscar-winning actor Sir Ben Kingsley and Italian director Giuseppe Tornatore will both be given this special tribute by the International Art Academy of Ischia on July 11th and July  14th respectively, at the Regina Isabella Hotel on the island resort off the coast of Naples. This year's Festival is chaired this year by Oscar-winning director Paul Haggis

Sir Ben Kingsley, whose birth name is Krishna Bhanji, was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 2001 for his contribution to British theater. He was born in Yorkshire in 1943. After his work with the Royal Shakespeare Company, he became a protagonist of much of the world’s quality cinema and television. His international reputation soared thanks to Richard Attenbourgh, who transformed him into an unforgettable Ghandi in the film of the same name, a role that earned him an Oscar. Among his most famous films are BUGSY, SCHINDLER'S LIST, HOUSE OF SAND AND FOG and SEXY BEAST. He is currently receiving superb reviews for his latest turn as a paid assasin  in YOU KILL ME.


The Sicilian director Guiseppe Tornatore will receive his award just days after winning the David di Donatello Award (the Italian Oscar) for THE STRANGERTornatore began his career making documentaries, making his debut with the narrative film IL CAMORRISTA. His career highpoint has been the masterpiece CINEMA PARADISO, which won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film and is one of the most beloved films of the 1990s. He followed this triumph with such well-regarded films as EVERYBODY'S FINE with legendary actor  Marcello Mastroianni; A PURE FORMALITY with French superstar Gérard Depardieu; and MALENA, which launched the career of actress Monica Bellucci. Tornatore’s next film will be BAARIA, which is the Sicilian name for his home town. The film, set during the 1940s and 1950s, will feature exclusively Sicilian actors.

The fifth edition of the Ischia Global Film & Music Fest ( is organized by the International Art Academy of Ischia and the Tourist Board of Ischia and Procida. Among the stellar international guests expected to attend the festivities are Oscar-nominated director Alejandro González Iñárritu (BABEL), legendary American writer/director Oliver Stone, along with fellow directors   Billie August, Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, Bobby Moresco, Emanuele Crialese, Mimmo Calopresti, and Vincenzo Marra. Among the celebrated actors expected to attend are Oscar winner Hilary Swank, along with fellow thespians Ioan Gruffudd, Laura Dern, Raul Bova, Alessandra Martines, Monica Cruz, and Enrico Loverso. Producers attending include Lawrence Bender, Mark Canton, Jeremy Thomas, Aurelio De Laurentiis, Fabrizio Mosca, Fulvio Lucisano, and Nicola Giuliano. Songwriters and film composers arriving this weekend include William Monahan, Braulio Mantovani, Marcos Bernstein, and Valerio Massimo Manfredi; musicians David Foster, Gustavo Santaolalla, Luis Bacalov, Laura Pausini, Sheryl Crow, and Humberto Gatika.

Sandy Mandelberger, Awards Watch Editor


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