GOLETA, Calif. - The Santa Barbara International Film Festival's eighth annual Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence was presented to Academy Award-winning actor Forest Whitaker at the Bacara Resort. The award is given to "a deserving lifelong contributor to cinema through their work in front of the camera, behind, or both.
Whitaker has been acting for over 30 years. He won the Oscar for Best Actor for his portrayal of dictator Idi Amin in the 1996 film "The Last King of Scotland." He is currently receiving attention for his work in "The Butler."
Oscar nominee Angele Bassett presented Whitaker with the award during the black-tie dinner. The Santa Barbara International Film Festival begins January 30th.Slideshow: Forest Whitaker Receives Kirk Douglas Award