Eddie Redmayne, the acclaimed star of The Theory Of Everythinghas been named winner of the Desert Palm Achievement Award, Actor, by the Palm Springs International Film pete_hammond_300x100Festival. Why is this important? As the awards season heats up we will be hearing announcement after announcement of various winners at awards shows of all stripes.  Always a key honor is to be named Best Actor or Actress by the Palm Springs International PalmSpringsFilmFestivallogoFilm Festival. It falls just after the New Year and right in the heart of voting for Academy Awards. It provides a key spotlight for films in a community with more than a few Academy voters, but also gets lots of attention outside of the desert.

Focus Features made a point of going after this award as it is perfectly timed. The studio seems to be following the same trajectory as last year when their Dallas Buyers Club star Matthew McConaughey won this exact same award and then went on to eventually win the Oscar. Redmayne, although considered by many to be the front runner, faces stiff competition with Benedict Cumberbatch and Michael Keaton, to name two, very hot on his tail in the most competitive of races. Still it’s better to have this prize, than not have it.  PSIFF will continue doling out announcements of winners as the season progresses. The ultra glamorous awards ceremony is held on Saturday January 3rd at the Palm Springs Convention Center. The Festival runs January 2 -12 and prides itself on having the largest collection of Academy Award Foreign Language film entries of any fest.