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The San Francisco Film Society has announced that James Schamus will be the recipient of the Kanbar Award for excellence in screenwriting at the 53rd San Francisco International Film Festival (April 22–May 6).

Schamus will  be honored at the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas at 1 pm, Saturday, May 1. An onstage interview with critic and cultural theorist B. Ruby Rich will be followed by the West Coast premiere of the newly completed director’s cut of Ride with the Devil (1999). Director Ang Lee’s underappreciated Civil War epic, with a cast including Tobey Maguire as a pistol-packing Missouri Bushwhacker, Jeffrey Wright, Simon Baker, Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Jewel, is revitalized with crucial battle sequences restored and highlights Schamus’s period-perfect dialogue.

An integral contributor to the American independent film business for more than two decades, James Schamus has the unique distinction of being an award-winning screenwriter and producer who is also a film executive. He is chief executive officer and cofounder of the worldwide film company Focus Features, which exists to produce, acquire and distribute original and daring films that challenge the mainstream to embrace and enjoy voices and visions from around the world.

As a screenwriter Schamus received an Academy Award nomination in the Best Adapted Screenplay category for his work on Ang Lee’s multi-Oscar-winner Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. He has collaborated as writer and producer with Lee on 11 feature films. Brokeback Mountain, on which Schamus served as a producer, won three Academy Awards and four Golden Globe Awards. Lee and Schamus’s other films together include Taking Woodstock, which Schamus adapted and produced; Lust, Caution, which Schamus cowrote and produced, and which won the Golden Lion Award for Best Picture at the 2007 Venice International Film Festival; The Hulk, which Schamus wrote and produced; Ride with the Devil, which Schamus adapted and produced; The Ice Storm, which Schamus produced and adapted, and for which he earned the best screenplay prize at the 1997 Cannes Film Festival; Sense and Sensibility, which Schamus coproduced; Eat Drink Man Woman, which Schamus cowrote and associate-produced; The Wedding Banquet, which Schamus cowrote and produced; and Pushing Hands, which Schamus produced.

Schamus is also a professor at Columbia University’s School of the Arts, where he teaches film history and theory, and he currently serves on the board of directors of Creative Capital. He was the 2006 Presidential Fellow in the Humanities at the University of Chicago and received his Ph.D. in English from UC Berkeley in 2003.

Previous recipients of the Kanbar Award are James Toback (2009), Robert Towne (2008), Peter Morgan (2007), Jean-Claude Carrière (2006) and Paul Haggis (2005).






Tickets are $20 for SFFS members and $25 for non-members. Tickets are on sale now to Film Society members whose memberships are valid through the end of the Festival.
Saturday, May 1, 1:00 pm
Sundance Kabuki Cinemas
DEVELOPER'S NOTE: http://old.sffs.org/content.aspx?pageid=983