Miami, FL (Jan. 28, 2021) — Miami Dade College’s (MDC) renowned Miami Film Festival today announced that Sound of Metal star Riz Ahmed will receive the Festival’s inaugural Impact Award. The award tribute and conversation moderated by Variety’s Film Awards Editor Clayton Davis will take place on March 6, 2021. The 38th annual Festival will be a held from March 5-14, 2021 as a hybrid event, with both virtual and in-theater presentations.
“We are excited to recognize Riz Ahmed as the first recipient of the Miami Film Festival’s Impact Award,” said Miami Film Festival Executive Director Jaie Laplante. “We selected Riz for this distinguished honor for his incisive, brilliant performance in Sound of Metal and what it has meant for the Recovery community within the Deaf community, which is often invisible in our society.”
Riz Ahmed stars in Amazon Studios film Sound of Metal. In the film, metal drummer Ruben begins to lose his hearing. When a doctor tells him his condition will worsen, he thinks his career and life is over. His girlfriend Lou checks the former addict into a rehab for the deaf hoping it will prevent a relapse and help him adapt to his new life. After being welcomed and accepted just as he is, Ruben must choose between his new normal and the life he once knew. The film was directed by Darius Marder and also stars Olivia Cooke and Paul Raci. For his performance in the film, Ahmed has received numerous Best Actor accolades from critics and film organizations including Gotham Awards, London Critics’ Circle Film Awards, Boston Society of Film Critics Awards, and San Diego Film Critics Society, among others.
Emmy award winner Riz Ahmed is a critically acclaimed actor, writer, creator, producer, musician, director, and activist. He became one of Hollywood’s most sought after artists following HBO’s The Night Of, for which he won an Emmy Award, and was Golden Globe and SAG nominated. His feature film credits include Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, The Sisters Brothers, Venom, Four Lions, Nightcrawler, and Mogul Mowgli. Up next, he stars in Amazon Studios’ Invasion and he is set to star in and executive produce the Exit West, being developed by Netflix and in collaboration with the Obamas’ Higher Ground Productions, and Ahmed’s production company Left Handed Films. It was recently announced that Left Handed Films inked a first-look deal covering television with Amazon Studios and has hired former AMC exec Allie Moore to oversee production and development. The banner has several projects on the horizon including Mogul Mowgli, a film co-written, starring and produced by Ahmed that premiered at the Berlin Film Festival where it won the Fipresci International Critics’ Prize and is currently nominated for six BIFA Awards including best screenplay, best actor, best music, best debut screenwriter, best cinematography and best sound. Strand will release the drama in the U.S. this year. Further out is a modern take on Shakespeare’s Hamlet, in which Ahmed will also star.
Ahmed’s musical journey has spanned two decades across battle rap, techno, artistic residencies, a successful American band Swet Shop Boys, and most recently, his critically acclaimed 2020 release “The Long Goodbye.” Its nine tracks are a breakup album like no other – these songs are about being dumped by the country you call home. Ahmed draws from hip-hop as well as the South Asian qawali tradition, to mix rap, melody, and spoken word.
Ahmed joins this year’s previously announced honoree actor Javier Cámara, who will receive the Festival’s Precious Gem Award. The festival will announce the complete line-up and additional honorees on February 3. For more information on the festival, visit miamifilmfestival.com.
About Miami Dade College’s Miami Film Festival
Miami Film Festival is an international film event that serves as a major film showcase for world cinema. Considered the preeminent film festival for highlighting Ibero-American cinema in the U.S, Miami Film Festival has become renowned for championing films made by the South Florida community, first-time feature filmmakers, and International Feature Film submissions to the Academy Awards. The annual Festival, produced and presented by Miami Dade College, attracts more than 60,000 audience members and more than 400 filmmakers, producers, talent and industry professionals. Since 1984, the Festival has screened over 2,500 films from more than 75 countries and given out more than $2 million USD in cash awards to filmmakers and distributors. Miami Film Festival is the oldest major festival housed in a university or college and also operates a year-round art cinema, Tower Theater Miami and Miami Film Festival GEMS in October. For more information, visit miamifilmfestival.com or call 305-237-FILM (3456).
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