Academy Award–winning actor Robert De Niro will be honored at the 44th Chaplin Award Gala, the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s most significant annual fundraiser, on Monday, May 8, 2017. The event will be attended by a host of notable guests and presenters and will include movie and interview clips, culminating in the presentation of the Chaplin Award.
The evening will celebrate all the facets of De Niro’s remarkable forty-plus-year career in cinema, including his amazing array of performances, which have resulted in some of the most memorable characters committed to film; his status as an unparalleled figure of New York film and culture; and his championing of independent film through the Tribeca Film Festival and Tribeca Film Institute. “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to honor the artistry of Robert De Niro, a hometown icon,” said Ann Tenenbaum, the Film Society’s Board Chairman. “His portrayal of New York characters has helped define this city for the entire world.”
“De Niro has long been such a legendary presence that one can overlook the remarkably fine-tuned craft and quality he has brought to his roles over his multi-decade career,” said Executive Director Lesli Klainberg. “If you watch his performances, from Mean Streets and The Godfather Part II to Raging Bull and Awakenings and on to his more recent work in such films as Silver Linings Playbook, you see a dramatic range and unwavering commitment to his work.”
Robert De Niro’s prolific motion picture career was launched in 1968 with Brian De Palma’s Greetings. In 1974, he won the New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor in recognition of his critically acclaimed performance in Bang the Drum Slowly and from the National Society of Film Critics for Martin Scorsese’s Mean Streets.
In 1975, De Niro won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of the young Vito Corleone in The Godfather Part II. In 1980, he won his second Oscar, as Best Actor, for his extraordinary portrayal of Jake La Motta in Scorsese’s Raging Bull. De Niro has earned Academy Award nominations for his work in five additional films: as Travis Bickle in Scorsese’s acclaimed Taxi Driver, as a Vietnam vet in Michael Cimino’s The Deer Hunter, as a catatonic patient brought to life in Penny Marshall’s Awakenings, as an ex-con looking for revenge in Scorsese’s Cape Fear, and as the father of a bipolar son in David O. Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook.
In 2009, De Niro was named by the coveted Kennedy Center Honors for his distinguished acting career. He also received the Hollywood Actor Award from the Hollywood Film Festival, which he won again in 2012; the Stanley Kubrick Award from the BAFTA Britannia Awards; and the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the 2011 Golden Globe Awards. He also served as the jury president of the 64th Cannes Film Festival.
His distinguished body of work also includes performances in Elia Kazan’s The Last Tycoon; Bernardo Bertolucci’s 1900; Ulu Grosbard’s True Confessions and Falling in Love; Sergio Leone’s Once Upon a Time in America; Martin Scorsese’s The King of Comedy, New York, New York, Goodfellas, and Casino; Terry Gilliam’s Brazil; Roland Joffe’s The Mission; Brian De Palma’s The Untouchables; Alan Parker’s Angel Heart; Martin Brest’s Midnight Run; David Jones’s Jacknife; Martin Ritt’s Stanley and Iris; Neil Jordan’s We’re No Angels; Ron Howard’s Backdraft; Michael Caton-Jones’s This Boy’s Life and City by the Sea; John McNaughton’s Mad Dog and Glory; Kenneth Branagh’s Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein; Michael Mann’s Heat; Barry Levinson’s Sleepers and Wag the Dog; Jerry Zaks’s Marvin’s Room; Tony Scott’s The Fan; James Mangold’s Copland; Alfonso Cuarón’s Great Expectations; Quentin Tarantino’s Jackie Brown; John Frankenheimer’s Ronin; Harold Ramis’s Analyze This and Analyze That; Joel Schumacher’s Flawless; George Tillman’s Men of Honor; John Herzfeld’s 15 Minutes; Frank Oz’s The Score; Tom Dey’s Showtime; Nick Hamm’s Godsend; John Polson’s Hide and Seek; Mary McGuckian’s The Bridge of San Luis Rey; Jay Roach’s Meet the Parents and Meet the Fockers; and more.
De Niro recently starred in David O. Russell’s American Hustle and Joy, Jonathan Jakubowicz’s Hands of Stone, Dan Mazer’s Dirty Grandpa, Nancy Meyers’s The Intern, Peter Segal’s Grudge Match, Jon Turteltaub’s Last Vegas, and Luc Besson’s The Family. He’ll next star in The Comedian, directed by Taylor Hackford and as Bernie Madoff in HBO’s Wizard of Lies, directed by Barry Levinson and produced by Tribeca Productions.
De Niro takes pride in the development of his production company, Tribeca Productions, the Tribeca Film Center, which he founded with Jane Rosenthal in 1988, and in the Tribeca Film Festival, which he founded with Rosenthal and Craig Hatkoff in 2001 as a response to the attacks on the World Trade Center. The Festival has evolved from an annual event to spur the economic and cultural revitalization of lower Manhattan to a gathering place that supports emerging and established voices, discovers award-winning filmmakers, and curates innovative and interactive experiences. Through Tribeca Productions, De Niro develops projects on which he serves in a combination of capacities, including producer, director, and actor. Tribeca’s A Bronx Tale in 1993 marked De Niro’s directorial debut, and he later directed and co-starred in The Good Shepherd with Matt Damon and Angelina Jolie. He is currently codirecting A Bronx Tale: The Musical on Broadway with Jerry Zaks, set to open December 1, 2016.
The Film Society’s Annual Gala began in 1972 when it honored Charlie Chaplin, who returned to the U.S. from exile to accept the commendation. Since then, the award has been renamed for Chaplin, and has been presented to many of the film industry’s most notable talents, including Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder, Laurence Olivier, Federico Fellini, Elizabeth Taylor, Bette Davis, James Stewart, Robert Altman, Martin Scorsese, Diane Keaton, Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Sidney Poitier, Barbra Streisand, Robert Redford, and, last year, Morgan Freeman.
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