Recognition for Mexican filmmaker Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu continues as the Sundance Institute has announced that it will present him with its Vanguard Leadership Award at the fifth annual Sundance Institute
benefit on June 2, 2015 in Los Angeles. The evening brings the creative community together to highlight both a great visionary in independent film as well
as an emerging artist with unique talent and creative independence.
Iñárritu has also just received 3 Academy Award nominations for his latest film “Birdman” (Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and, since he was also the producer, Best Picture). The film earned a total of 9 nominations.
Gonzalez Iñárritu will be honored for the originality and independent spirit of his films, including
“Amores Perros” (2000),
“21 Grams” (2003),
“Biutiful” (2010) and
“Birdman” (2014), all of which have earned Academy Award nominations. He is also the first Mexican director to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director and by the Directors Guild of America for Best Director.
He is also the first Mexican-born director to have won the Prix de la mise en scene or best director award at Cannes (2006).
“Amores Perros” is featured in the Sundance Collection at UCLA, an independent film preservation program established in 1997.
He has produced three films that appeared at
the Sundance Film Festival:
“Nine Lives” (2005),
“Mother & Child” (2010) and
“Rudo y Cursi” (2009).
Keri Putnam, Executive Director of Sundance Institute, said, “The current health and vibrancy of independent film is best reflected in the stories from filmmakers who
continue to push and break boundaries. Alejandro G. Iñárritu is among the most creative and innovative filmmakers working today, and the boldness, humanity
and audacity of his films will inspire generations to come.”
Gonzalez Iñárritu said, “It comes as a great honor to receive this award from an organization whose mission, spirit and objectives are noble and have a profound effect on
many filmmakers around the world.”
Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu will be the fourth recipient of the Vanguard Leadership Award, joining philanthropist and former Institute Trustee George Gund, journalist and
film critic Roger Ebert and actress and arts advocate Glenn Close.
In addition to the Vanguard Leadership Award, the Institute presents the Vanguard Award,
including a cash grant and mentorship from industry professionals and Institute staff, to an emerging artist with creative independence. Benh Zeitlin (“Beasts of the Southern Wild“), Ryan Coogler (“Fruitvale Station“), Damien Chazelle (“Whiplash“) are past recipients, and the 2015 recipient will be announced in the spring. The Vanguard Awards were founded in 2011 to mark the 30th anniversary of the
Sundance Institute Feature Film Program and its founding director, Michelle Satter.