The Awards Season Has Begun

With Brad Pitt making an appearance at Saturday’s 18th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival, the award season started off with a bang. Brad and Cate Blanchett’s film “Babel” won the award for Ensemble Performance.

“This desert has a little bit more comfort,” said a smiling Pitt, contrasting Palm Springs with the conditions he and Blanchett endured while on location in Morocco. “Here, you have cappuccinos and massages, while there it’s tough to get running water.”

“I’m a great lover of the desert,” piped in Blanchett, “but the Babel desert (where her character takes a bullet) was harrowing.”

Blanchett on stage joked that she could barely speak English, prompting Pitt to play interpreter and feign sign language. He also led the crowd of 1,800 (which included Morgan Freeman, Laurence Fishburne, Alan Arkin and Sissy Spacek) in singing Happy Birthday to their Babel co-star, Rinko Kikuchi. Blanchett playfully said that in honor of Kikuchi’s 26th birthday, she was pulling a Britney Spears — “not wearing any underwear this evening.”

The list of winners and many more photos (Jessica Biel, Brad Pitt, Kate Winslet, Abigail Breslin, Adam Beach, Sienna Miller, Sissy Spacek, Cate Blanchett, Valerie Harper, Bridget Fonda, Danny Elfman, and JoBeth Williams) from the The 18th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival Awards Ceremony red carpet after the jump.

Palm Springs Film Festival kicks off awards season [USA Today]


List of winners at the Palm Springs International Film Festival 2007 Gala Awards:

- Ensemble Performance Award: Babel

- Director of the Year: Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (Babel)

- Career Achievement Award: Cate Blanchett (Babel,Notes on a Scandal,The Good German )

- Desert Palm Achievement for Acting: Kate Winslet (Little Children)

- Sonny Bono Visionary Award: Todd Field (Little Children)

- Rising Star Award, Male: Adam Beach (Flags of Our Fathers)

- Rising Star Award, Female: Jessica Biel (The Illusionist)

- Frederick Loewe Award for Film Composing: Philip Glass (The Illusionist,Notes on a Scandal )

- Chairman’s Vanguard Award: Little Miss Sunshine

- SAG Foundation Patron of the Arts Award: Sydney Pollack

- Breakthrough Performance Award: Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls)