2016 SBIFF American Riviera Award Winners

  1. Rachel McAdams One of the American Riviera Award Winners @ 2016 SBIFF

Excitement and anticipation abound Friday evening as Michael Keaton and Rachel McAdams stormed the red carpet at the Arlington Theater in Santa Barbara, CA for the American Riviera Awards at the 31st annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival. Rachel’s stunning Jonathan Simkhai gown dazzled the crowd as she got out of the car to sign autographs for screaming fans.

Roger Durling, Executive Director of SBIFF and moderator for the evening, greeted the audience with opening remarks about the importance of film and its power to unite communities across the globe. He then played a clip from Mark Ruffalo, the third tribute who regrettably could not attend this evening, and welcomed Rachel and Michael on stage to a thunderous applause.

Roger began with a discussion about SPOTLIGHT, highlighting what drew them to the story and the experience of working with director Tom McCarthy. Rachel spoke specifically about the real-life character she portrays, reporter Sacha Pfeiffer, who sat in the audience this evening.

Roger took Rachel, Michael, and the audience on a trip down memory lane with a series of clips from films at various points in their careers including MEAN GIRLS and THE PAPER. Rachel recounted her role in THE HOT CHICK and how it was “probably the scariest job she’s ever had because she had to become Rob Schneider” and Michael commented on his Boston accent in SPOTLIGHT, and why he “prayed that he would never have to do one”. Michael and Rachel shared stories about their favorite filmmakers, and Roger and Rachel bonded over their shared intimidation when meeting Michael for the first time.

The crowd cheered as Tom McCarthy took the stage to present the tributes with their award. Tom shared a few words about Mark’s incredible determination as a performer, Rachel’s power as a listener and as the heart of SPOTLIGHT, and Michael’s remarkable energy and tenacity that he brings to each role.

Please view SBIFF Website for more info on the festival

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