Denzel Washington to be given honorary award at San Sebastián Film Festival

Two-time Oscar winner is opening the cinema event with “The Equalizer,” his latest thriller

US actor Denzel Washington will be in San Sebastián in September.
US actor Denzel Washington will be in San Sebastián in September.Chris Pizzello (AP)

Hollywood star Denzel Washington is to be given the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 62nd San Sebastián Film Festival in September.

The two-time Oscar winner is scheduled to open the festival in the Basque seaside town on September 19, the same day he will be given the Donostia Prize.

Washington debuted on the big screen in 1981, and won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for the 1989 movie Glory, an American Civil War drama that paved the way for work with some of the world’s top film directors, including Spike Lee (Malcolm X, 1992), Kenneth Branagh (Much Ado About Nothing, 1993), Jonathan Demme (Philadelphia, 1993), Ridley Scott (American Gangster, 2007) and Robert Zemeckis (Flight, 2012).

The film festival is Spain’s most important cinema event

In 2001, his portrayal of a violent police officer in Antoine Fuqua’s Training Day earned Washington the Oscar for best actor in a leading role. He has also won two Golden Globes and two Silver Bears at the Berlinale.

Washington also stars in The Equalizer, the thriller that will open the out of competition section of the festival.

The film festival is Spain’s most important cinema event, and one of seven European festivals in the A category, awarded by the International Federation of Film Producers Associations. During Hollywood’s golden era, it drew top actors and directors, including Alfred Hitchcock, who premiered Vertigo there.

Past winners of the Donostia honorary award include Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, Peter O’Toole, Harrison Ford and Robert DeNiro. Last year the award went to Spanish actress Carmen Maura and X-Men star Hugh Jackman.

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