Seeing Stars at the Parker Palm Springs

Variety Honors at the Parker Palm Springs.
Pharrell Williams accepting the Creative Impact Award alongside “Hidden Figures” stars Jim Parsons and Janelle Monae .

The Palm Springs International Film Festival took over the illustrious Parker.

Enter through the two iconic orange front doors your attention will be quickly seized by the Jonathan Adler midcentury décor, from the mix and match throw pillows and pouf chairs to the neatly arranged intimate seating areas your eyes will be in wonderment.  The Parker just this past November won the 2016 Readers Choice award for the Best Hotels in the World by Condé Nast magazine.

Stars swarmed to the beautiful Parker to catch a glimpse of future directors across many different genres.  Such big names in the crowd included, ex-NFL pro and “Starsky and Hutch” Fred Williamson; German actor Udo Kier; the insanely sarcastic and witty Jane Lynch from smash show “Glee” and Director Michael Lerman who has played an integral role in the blockbusters “Skyfall,” “Quantum of Solace,” & most recent 007 movie “Spectre.”

Parker Palm Springs

Matt Ross presented the Creative Impact in Acting Award to Viggo Mortensen for the movie “Captain Fantastic” of which he wrote & directed.  Viggo humbly accepted the award from his director.  It is being said by many critics as “the performance of his career.” As Matt Ross described the creative approach Viggo had undergone to prepare for this film the crowd was amazed at the dedication and immersive mindset of Viggo.  Ross went on to say, “Viggo cares about things that matter…You don’t catch him acting, he’s just doing.” This is a must see film with a strong message of hope.

“It” girl, actress Ruth Negga, star of the movie “Loving” presented the movies writer and director Jeff Nichols with the Creative Impact Award. “Loving” is based on an American woman in 1960’s Virginia who fights for the right to stay married to her white husband Richard Loving.

Ruth Negga, star of "Loving."
Ruth Negga, star of “Loving.”

Rounding out the trio of individuals, Jim Parsons and Janelle Monáe presented Pharrell Williams with the Creative Impact in Producing Award for his film “Hidden Figures.” Based on the true story of the race against Russia to put a man in space, this film focus’ on the female mathematicians whom happen to be African American, break barriers in both race and gender equality in the late 60’s.

These philanthropic awards measure something different than box office sales.  Jeff Nichols, Viggo Mortensen and Pharrell Williams dare a different perspective.  Their significance challenges status qou, confronts popular opinion and demands movie goers to think differently about why things are they way they are and how they want to invoke in each individual to view things that are not on the surface.

Ruth Negga presenting Jeff Nichols, the writer and director of “Loving” with the Creative Impact Award.
Ruth Negga presenting Jeff Nichols, the writer and director of“ Loving” with the Creative Impact Award.

Of course we cannot forget about our 10 to watch Directors, 5 of which were present in Palm Springs Tuesday to receive their awards, technically 6 because the Southern California duo Brendan & Emmett Malloy collaborated to direct their film “Tribes of Palos Verdes.” Others in attendance included blockbuster film director David Sandberg for film “Lights Out,” with just a budget of a little under 5 million dollars has grossed an astounding 68 million stateside alone thus far and is expected to become even bigger as a must see horror film of 2016.   Ritesh Batra “The Sense of an Ending,” Otto Bell for “The Eagle Huntress,” and Brazilian Kleber Mendonca Filho for film “Aquarius” joined Variety Chief Film Critic Peter Debruge on stage.  Others not in attendance were the following:

Maren Ade: “Toni Erdmann”

Geremy Jasper: “Patti Cake$”

Barry Jenkins: “Moonlight”

William Oldroyd: “Lady Macbeth”

Julia Ducournau: “Raw”

UP NEXT: 10 to watch acclaimed Cinematographers will be honored at 18th annual Newport Beach Film Festival April 20-27, 2017.  Previous films featured at the festivals include “Mad Max,” & “Love at First Sight;” an Orson Welles centennial Tribute.

The Parker Palm Springs

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Jason Patrick Hamilton

Jason Patrick Hamilton is an artist that specializes in contemporary & abstract art. His roots are Midwest but has lived in NYC and now resides in LA.

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