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Sean Connery To Be Honored At First Rome Film Fest

The inaugural Rome FilmFest, which will be held in the Italian capitol from 13 to 21 October, is shaping up to become a major European festival destination, giving the longtime Venice Film Festival a run for its money.

The Festival announced that veteran actor Sean Connery will be the first recipient of the new Rome FilmFest’s Acting Award, the prize for the actor’s craft established by CINEMA, the Festival’s collaboration with IMAIE (the actors’ and authors’ syndicate).

Connery will receive several tributes during a three-day celebration of his life and career. On October 12th, on the eve of the Festival, Connery will be present at a special concert event, conducted by Riccarod Muti, which will feature musical themes from many of Connery’s films over a 45 year career.

Connery will be present to receive his award on the opening night of the Festival, to be held on October 13th in the Sala Sinopoli at Rome’s prestigious Auditorium Parco della Musica. On October 14, Connery will receive the City of Rome Prize by Mayor Walter Veltroni.

In addition, the Festival will present a 14 film retrospective of films starring the Scottish-born icon, including his James Bond films of the 1960s, his Oscar-winning turn in THE UNTOUCHABLES (1988), and his recent work in FINDING FORRESTER (2000). Connery was honored last month with the distinguished AFI Lifetime Achievement Award, honoring his 85-film career over nearly five decades.

“I am greatly honored to be the first actor to receive the Festa del Cinema Award”, Connery declared in a prepared statement. “This Award, given by the City of Rome makes it all the more attractive, reflecting its enormous contribution to world cinema and the arts. I’m certain it will be a splendid celebration”.

The Festival has also announced three parallel awards to be bestowed at the event which are meant to highlight several of its defining moments: the value and the contemporary relevance of documentary films, better known as “reality cinema” (Cult Prize); the excitement and vitality of the relationship between blockbuster productions and their public, as conveyed by the Festival’s “Première” Section (Blockbuster Award); and the creativity and inventiveness unleashed by the new media and the formats of choice for young filmmakers (3 Italia Award).

These prizes, awarded by independent juries at their own discretion, aim to give special recognition to significant segments of the Festival program, and provide opportunities for filmmakers who have decided to preview their works at the Festival.

Sandy Mandelberger
Industry Editor

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