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David O. Russell to receive top prize at Santa Barbara film festival

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Jan 19, 2014 | 11:35am EST

David O. Russell is set to continue his awards season success by taking home the Outstanding Director Award at the upcoming Santa Barbara International Film Festival in California. The moviemaker's latest release, American Hustle, has already scored top prizes at the Golden Globes and Saturday night's (18Jan14) Screen Actors Guild Awards, where its stars, including Amy Adams, Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence, picked up the Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture honour, and now Russell will be feted for his work when the 29th annual Santa Barbara bash kicks off on 30 January (14). Festival boss Roger Durling says, "Russell has matured into one of the most essential voices in film today. His deeply personal trilogy, comprised of The Fighter, Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle, tap deeply at the core of the American dream where anyone should be guaranteed the opportunity of a second chance, of reinvention and triumph. "As a writer and director, he is not afraid to push the envelope in the cinematic world. He has the eye for the picture he wants to present and then does so, with an expertise that is as bold as it is a joy to watch." The filmmaker will be presented with the accolade at the historic Arlington Theatre on 31 January (14). He joins a long list of fellow festival honourees, including Emma Thompson, Daniel Day-Lewis, Ben Affleck and frequent movie collaborators Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio, who will receive the Cinema Vanguard Award. Russell already has plenty to celebrate - American Hustle is nominated in 10 categories for the 2014 Academy Awards, including acting nods for each of its main stars, in addition to Best Picture, Best Director and Best Original Screenplay.

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