The Santa Barbara International Film Festival has announced Michelle Yeoh will be receiving the 15th annual Kirk Douglas Award For Excellence in Film. This marks the first time since the passing of screen legend Kirk Douglas that the honor will be awarded.
The award, which benefits Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s year-round educational programs, will be presented Friday, Dec. 9 at a black-tie dinner at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara.
Yeoh is an internationally recognized Malaysian-born actress who rose to fame in 1990s Hong Kong action films before going on to shatter convention and star in myriad blockbusters. In March 2022, she starred in the critically acclaimed “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” which has since become A24’s highest grossing film worldwide.
She has appeared in more than 70 features and television series, with her filmography showcasing a collection of iconic roles, including Ang Lee’s “Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon 1 & 2,” Rob Marshall’s “Memoirs of a Geisha,” Roger Spottiswoode’s James Bond film “Tomorrow Never Dies,” Danny Boyle’s “Sunshine,” and Jon Chu’s “Crazy Rich Asians,” the highest-grossing romantic comedy in the U.S. in the past 10 years.
After appearing in James Gunn’s second installment of the “Guardians of the Galaxy” franchise, Yeoh returned to the Marvel universe in Destin Daniel Cretton’s “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.”
In television, Yeoh was most recently seen as Emperor Philippa Georgiou in CBS’ “Star Trek: Discovery.” Next, she will be reuniting with Cretton in the Disney+ series “American Born Chinese” and starring in Netflix’s upcoming limited series, “The Witcher: Blood Origin.” Other upcoming credits include James Cameron’s “Avatar” sequels and Paul Feig’s “The School for Good and Evil.”
The 38th Santa Barbara International Film Festival will take place live Feb. 8-18. Official events including screenings, filmmaker Q&As, industry panels, and celebrity tributes, will be held throughout the city, including at the Arlington Theatre. Passes for the 2023 Festival are on sale now at sbiff.org.