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The Santa Barbara International Film Festival announced today that it will honor Rooney Mara with the Cinema Vanguard Award on Friday, February 12, 2016. The actress will be celebrated for her remarkable role in this year’s Carol alongside Cate Blanchett, who will present Mara with the award at a tribute at the Arlington Theatre.

The Cinema Vanguard Award was created in recognition of actors who have forged their own path – taking artistic risks and making a significant and unique contribution to film. Previous honorees include Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones, Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio, Amy Adams, Jean Dujardin and Bérénice Bejo, Nicole Kidman, Christoph Waltz, Vera Farmiga, Stanley Tucci, Peter Sarsgaard, Kristin Scott Thomas, and Ryan Gosling.

Festival Director Roger Durling commented, “From her scene-stealing turn in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo to her outstanding performance in his year’s Carol, Rooney has repeatedly showcased her talents as one of the most gifted actors of her generation. I truly admire the enigmatic and complex nature of her performances. She’s an adept, beguiling actor, and we are proud to present her with this year’s Cinema Vanguard Award.”

Rooney Mara is best known for her Golden Globe® and Academy Award® nominated performance in David Fincher’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. She has also appeared in The Social Network, Steven Soderbergh’s Side Effects, and Joe Wright’s Pan. She will be seen in Lion alongside Nicole Kidman and in Untitled Terrence Malick Project, also starring Natalie Portman, Christian Bale, and Ryan Gosling.

Carol follows two women from very different backgrounds who find themselves in an unexpected love affair in 1950s New York. A young woman in her 20s, Therese Belivet (Rooney Mara), is a clerk working in a Manhattan department store and dreaming of a more fulfilling life when she meets Carol (Cate Blanchett), an alluring woman trapped in a loveless, convenient marriage. The film is adapted from Patricia Highsmith’s seminal novel “The Price of Salt”, and also stars Kyle Chandler and Sarah Paulson.

In addition to Rooney Mara, the festival has also announced that it will honor Johnny Depp (Black Mass) with its Maltin Modern Master Award, Brie Larson (Room) and Saoirse Ronan (Brooklyn) with its Outstanding Performers Of The Year Award and Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo and Rachel McAdams (Spotlight) as an ensemble with its American Riviera Award. It is also set to celebrate Elizabeth Banks (Love & Mercy), Joel Edgerton (Black Mass), Paul Dano (Love & Mercy, Youth) and Jacob Tremblay (Room) with the Virtuoso Award among additional, yet to be announced, honorees. The festival previously honored Jane Fonda (Youth) with its Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film.