Last March, Darryl Macdonald correctly predicted that Sandra Bullock would win the Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in “The Blindside.”
But the executive director of the Palm Springs International Film Festival also said in a pre-Oscar story that Carey Mulligan’s performance in the British film “An Education” was better than Bullock’s. Mulligan, however, was still a rising star.
“I just didn’t think there was that much chance of her winning,” Macdonald said Tuesday. “I think she’s going to be one of the great actresses of our lifetime.”
On Jan. 8, Mulligan will be recognized for her rising star qualities when the Palm Springs International Film Festival presents her with its Breakthrough Performance Award at its black-tie awards gala at the Palm Springs Convention Center.
“Carey Mulligan is an actress of extraordinary talent and versatility,” festival chairman Harold Matzner said in a statement. “In her most recent performances as the estranged daughter of Gordon Gekko in ‘Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps’ to ‘Never Let Me Go,’ where her character learns that life isn’t always what it seems, she brings uncommon vision and depth to her art.”
Mulligan first came to Macdonald’s attention in “Pride and Prejudice” in 2005. She also had roles in “Public Enemies” with Johnny Depp and “Brothers” with Tobey Maguire in 2009.
Past recipients of the Breakthrough Performance Award include Marion Cotillard, Jennifer Hudson, Felicity Huffman and Freida Pinto.
Last year’s recipients were Jeremy Renner and Mariah Carey, who became the evening’s most celebrated award winner thanks to her odd acceptance speech.
The Palm Springs Film Festival runs Jan. 6-17. It’s one of North America’s largest film festivals with more than 130,000 filmgoers expected.