Academy Award winner Robert Redford will be the recipient of the 42nd Annual Chaplin Award. The director, actor, producer, environmentalist, and founder of the Sundance Film Festival and Institute will be honored at the Chaplin Gala at Lincoln Center on Monday, April 27, 2015. The evening will spotlight the many iconic roles he has played and the exceptional work he has directed and produced. Redford continues to make his mark on cinema through his career in front of and behind the camera as well as his active role in supporting generations of emerging talent in independent film through his nonprofit Sundance Institute and the world renowned Sundance Film Festival. The event will be attended by a host of notable guests and will include movie and interview clips culminating in the presentation of The Chaplin Award.

“Obviously one of the reasons we were excited to be able to recognize Robert Redford is because of his contribution to the film community,” said Lesli Klainberg, Executive Director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center. “It's not just his work as an actor, director, and producer. His impact is hard to measure in many ways. Without the Sundance Institute and Sundance Film Festival, we'd likely have a different industry. And they continue to have a huge impact.”

As a producer/filmmaker, Klainberg has personally felt the impact of Sundance, which has touched the careers of many veteran filmmakers working today. Klainberg's most recent Sundance title was as a line producer in Kristi Jacobson and Lori Silverbush's doc A Place at the Table (2012). “As a filmmaker myself, I've had great success at Sundance and it's had a great affect on my career,” she said. “As a nonfiction filmmaker, I can say the impact that Sundance has had on the documentary community is immense. The Institute treats documentary on the same level as fiction work, where it, of course, has also had an enormous impact.”

Klainberg added: “Obviously he's a star that many of us have grown up watching from his films in the early '60s to his current work [on screen] including J.C. Chandor's All Is Lost, which played at the New York Film Festival last year. I happen to think he's also had some of the greatest co-stars ever, from Natalie Wood to Faye Dunaway, Barbra Streisand, and, of course, his great bromance with Paul Newman.”

Though Redford has long been a Hollywood star, Klainberg noted that he too has worked outside the studio system, mirroring the experiences of some of the directors and producers his Sundance Institute and film festival have nurtured. “What's interesting is that he has been an independent filmmaker, producing and getting money for his own movies. He stands for a certain transition in the larger film industry even before Sundance was founded.” 

Klainberg concluded: “You can't help but think it's been a long time coming for Robert Redford to receive the Chaplin Award, so we're really grateful to have him… The Chaplin Award is very specific in that it [honors] somebody in the context of their career and their impact on the film community and industry.”

“The Board is thrilled to have Robert Redford as the next recipient of the Chaplin Award,” said Ann Tenenbaum, the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Board Chairman. “Not only is he an internationally known and loved actor, director, and producer, but perhaps no other single artist has done more to champion the work of independent filmmakers. This makes him a truly distinguished honoree—the Film Society, the New York Film Festival, and the film world in general are immensely richer because of his contributions.”

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Robert Redford Biography:

Born in 1936 in Santa Monica, Redford began his career in New York in 1959 appearing as a guest star on several TV shows, including The Twilight Zone, <em>Perry Mason, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and that year also marked his Broadway debut in Tall Story (1959), followed by roles in The Highest Tree (1959), Sunday in New York (1961), and his biggest Broadway success as the newlywed husband in Neil Simon’s Barefoot in the Park (1963). He also earned an Emmy nomination as Best Supporting Actor for his performance in The Voice of Charlie Pont in 1963, followed by one of his last television appearances on Breaking Point.

Redford made his screen debut in War Hunt (1962), directed by Academy Award winner Denis Sanders, which also marked the first of several collaborations with his co-star, Sydney Pollack. He won his first Golden Globe award for Inside Daisy Clover (1965), in which he played a bisexual movie star who weds Natalie Wood. He worked with the actress again in Sydney Pollack’s This Property Is Condemned (1966), and that same year, he starred in Arthur Penn’s The Chase opposite Jane Fonda, with whom he would later reteam for the movie version of Barefoot in the Park (1967) and Pollack’s The Electric Horseman (1979).

Playing alongside Paul Newman in 1969’s Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Redford launched to superstardom, and throughout the following two decades he further cemented his role within film history playing iconic characters in such films as Jeremiah Johnson (1972), The Candidate (1972), The Way We Were (1973), the Oscar-nominated The Sting (1973), The Great Gatsby (1974), Three Days of the Condor (1975), All the President’s Men (1976), The Natural (1984). and Out of Africa (1985), winner of seven Academy Awards.     

Redford’s impressive career also extends behind the camera. He made his directorial debut with the Academy Award–winning Ordinary People, followed by The Milagro Beanfield War (1987), A River Runs Through It (1992), Quiz Show (1994), The Horse Whisperer (1998), and The Company You Keep (2012), among others. 

He was the recipient of the 1997 National Medal for the Arts by President Clinton. In 2001 he was honored with the Freedom in Film Award presented by the First Amendment Center, and in 2002 received the Pell Award for Excellence in the Arts: Lifetime Achievement Award. In December 2005, Redford accepted the Kennedy Center Honors for his “distinguished achievement in the performing arts and in recognition of his extraordinary contributions to the life of our country.” Most recently, Redford received the Legion d’Honneur medal, France’s highest recognition, from President Nicolas Sarkozy on October 14, 2010.
Redford starred in last year’s New York Film Festival selection All Is Lost, and just completed production on A Walk in the Woods, based on Bill Bryson’s memoir and co-starring Nick Nolte. It is scheduled for release in 2015. He is now shooting Truth with Cate Blanchett. The film is based on the book Truth and Duty by Mary Mapes.

The Film Society’s Annual Gala began in 1972 and 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 honored 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, Michael Douglas, Sidney Poitier, Catherine Deneuve, Barbra Streisand, and, last year, Rob Reiner.