"Photo credit: Courtesy of Iglesias Mas/El Deseo D.A. S.L.U."
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Pedro Almodóvar and Spike Lee to Receive Tribute Awards at TIFF

The Toronto International Film Festival has revealed this afternoon that Pedro Almodóvar and Spike Lee will be the first two Tribute Award recipients this year. They’ll be feted at TIFF after long and prestigious careers. Almodóvar will be getting the Jeff Skoll Award in Impact Media prize, while Lee will be receiving the TIFF Ebert Director Award. More from Toronto below.

“Photo credit: Courtesy of Spike Lee”

Here is the press release:

Cameron Bailey, CEO, TIFF, is delighted to announce the first honourees of this year’s Tribute Awards, Academy Award®–winning directors and legends, Pedro Almodóvar and Spike Lee. One of the world’s foremost filmmakers and provocative storytellers, Almodóvar will receive the Jeff Skoll Award in Impact Media presented by Participant, and Spike Lee, a cultural icon who has influenced generations of filmmakers, will receive the TIFF Ebert Director Award. The 2023 Tribute Awards presented by Bulgari will take place on Sunday, September 10, during the 48th edition of the Toronto International Film Festival at Fairmont Royal York Hotel. Now in its fifth year, the TIFF Tribute Awards have served as an awards-season bellwether, with past honourees Michelle Yeoh, Brendan Fraser, Jessica Chastain, Roger Deakins, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Joaquin Phoenix, Taika Waititi, and Chloé Zhao going on to win awards on the international stage.

“It’s a true thrill to acknowledge Pedro Almodóvar as the distinguished recipient of the Jeff Skoll Impact Media Award for 2023,” stated Bailey. “Pedro has been coming to TIFF for years and each time is better than the time before. His artistic vision, bold storytelling, and unwavering commitment to pushing the boundaries of cinema have had a profound impact on cinema. He challenges societal norms, champions diversity, and illuminates the human experience with sensitivity and grace. We applaud his contributions to cinema and celebrate his ability to inspire and provoke audiences worldwide.”

The Jeff Skoll Award in Impact Media presented by Participant recognizes leadership in creating a union between social impact and cinema. Past recipients honoured in the prestigious category include Buffy Sainte-Marie in 2022, Alanis Obomsawin in 2021 and Mira Nair in 2020.

“The TIFF Ebert Director Award recognizes filmmakers who have exemplified greatness in their career,” continued Bailey. “A foremost storyteller of our era, Spike’s body of work from She’s Gotta Have it, to Do the Right Thing to Mo’ Better Blues, to his most recent film at TIFF 2021, American Utopia, Spike has inspired audiences and made a lasting impact on the art of filmmaking.”

Named after legendary film critic Roger Ebert, the Award has gone to celebrated visionaries such as Martin Scorsese, Claire Denis, Ava DuVernay, Wim Wenders, and the late Agnès Varda. Past recipients who received the Award since the TIFF Tribute Awards were introduced include Sam Mendes (2022) Denis Villeneuve (2021), Chloé Zhao (2020), and Taika Waititi (2019).

Bulgari returns as a major sponsor and official jewellery partner of this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, also presenting the Share Her Journey Groundbreaker Award at the 2023 Tribute Awards. The partnership between TIFF and Bulgari highlights the shared commitment to arts and culture.

The Awards night serves as TIFF’s largest annual fundraiser, having raised $1.3 million in 2022.This year, the Tribute Awards gala will support the Viola Desmond Cinema campaign, which was launched through the Every Story Fund in 2022. For more information and to purchase tickets visit tiff.net/tribute.


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Written by Steven Prusakowski

Steven Prusakowski has been a cinephile as far back as he can remember, literally. At the age of ten, while other kids his age were sleeping, he was up into the late hours of the night watching the Oscars. Since then, his passion for film, television, and awards has only grown. For over a decade he has reviewed and written about entertainment through publications including Awards Circuit and Screen Radar. He has conducted interviews with some of the best in the business - learning more about them, their projects and their crafts. He is a graduate of the RIT film program. You can find him on Twitter and Letterboxd as @FilmSnork – we don’t know why the name, but he seems to be sticking to it.
Email: filmsnork@gmail.com

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