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Johnny Depp to Receive BIFF's Career Achievement Award

Nassau, Bahamas – December  2, 2009 – The Bahamas International Film Festival (BIFF) announced today that three-time Academy Award® nominee Johnny Depp will be honored with the prestigious Career Achievement Award at this year’s Film Festival, taking place December 10-17 in Nassau. The announcement was made by BIFF Founder and Executive Director Leslie Vanderpool.

Depp will be on hand for the special tribute and presentation at the Balmoral Club in Nassau. Legendary leading man Sir Sean Connery will again be lending his full support at BIFF, serving as Festival Patron and presenting Depp with the Career Achievement Award.

“There is no actor better suited to receive BIFF’s highest honor, the Career Achievement Award,” said Leslie Vanderpool. “Johnny Depp is one of the finest actors of our generation and is, simply put, an icon. We’re all tremendously excited to bestow him with this honor and celebrate his incomparable career. What makes this tribute to Johnny even more special is that he has a home in the Bahamas and possesses a true love and appreciation for the region and culture. This will be an amazing and magical event for everyone involved.”

The Career Achievement Tribute honors an actor or actress whose work has had a major impact and advanced the frontiers of cinematic artistry around the world. Past recipients include Academy Award® winner Nicolas Cage, Academy Award® nominee Laurence Fishburne and acclaimed actress Daryl Hannah. The Career Achievement Award evening is once again sponsored by Lombard Odier.

"We at Lombard Odier, are proud to be sponsoring the Career Achievement Tribute for the 5th year in a row. We are excited by Mr. Depp's presence and hope the evening of the Career Achievement Tribute will become a fond memory for Mr. Depp," said Laurent Colli, Head of Private Clients at Lombard.

The Bahamas Minister of Tourism, Minister Vincent Vanderpool Wallace, commented, “It gives us great pleasure to welcome Johnny Depp, an esteemed resident of the Bahamas, to the Bahamas International Film Festival. We are proud of all his remarkable achievements and the great contributions he has made in all walks of life. We are glad this prestigious award and tribute is going to almost one of our own.”

An internationally acclaimed actor with over fifty films to his credit, Depp has starred in some of Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters and earned critics’ praise for his commanding performances. He has garnered three Academy Award® Best Actor nominations -- for his memorable performances as a singing barber in Tim Burton’s “Sweeney Todd”; as Sir James Matthew Barrie in Marc Forster’s family drama “Finding Neverland;” and for his iconic role as Captain Jack Sparrow in Disney’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.”

He has received both critical and popular acclaim from his unique work in a variety of memorable films but when he was cast as Captain Jack Sparrow in “The Pirates of Caribbean” trilogy, his characterization of the plundering pirate captivated international moviegoers, made box office history, and catapulted Depp to an all new level of international stardom.

Depp’s screen credits include “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “The Libertine,” “Once Upon a Time in Mexico,” “Blow,” “Chocolat,” ‘Sleepy Hollow,” “Ed Wood,” “Donnie Brasco,” “Don Juan Demarco,” “Edward Scissorhands,” “The Ninth Gate,” “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas,” “From Hell,” “Before Night Falls,” “Secret Window,” “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape,” “Benny and Joon” and “Platoon,” to name a few.

Most recently, Depp portrayed famed Chicago bank robber, John Dillinger, in Michael Mann’s period heist, “Public Enemies” and is one of three actors selected by filmmaker Terry Gilliam to substitute in the starring role left behind by the tragic death of actor Heath Ledger in “The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus”.

Depp will next be seen starring in Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland” and “The Rum Diary.”

Entering just its sixth year, the Bahamas International Film Festival has established itself as a marquee international Festival in the Caribbean region, discovering and promoting independent voices and talent from around the world and showcasing a diverse array of international films.

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