The Santa Barbara International Film Festival will hand its 2015 Outstanding Performer of the Year Award to Foxcatcher star Steve Carell. A tribute celebrating his performance in Bennett Miller’s film will take place on February 6. Foxcatcher debuted in Cannes and sets an almost unrecognizable Carell as the reclusive, wrestling-obsessed millionaire John du Pont. SBIFF executive director Roger Durling says of Carell, “He’s made us laugh for so many years with his great comedic abilities, but he shows this year that his range and artistry runs deep with his career-changing performance in Foxcatcher. He is unrecognizable physically and emotionally.”
Sony Pictures Classics released Foxcatcher this past weekend on the heels of screenings at the Academy earlier this week. The film led the specialty box office, opening with a robust $288K in six theaters. Carell’s performance has stirred critical acclaim leading into awards season.
Previous Outstanding Performer Award recipients at Santa Barbara include Cate Blanchett, Jennifer Lawrence, Viola Davis, James Franco, Colin Firth, Penelope Cruz, Angelina Jolie, Helen Mirren, Heath Ledger, Kate Winslet and Charlize Theron. The Santa Barbara festival runs January 27-February 7.