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It was a starry Friday morning at the Parker Palm Springs, where celebrities ranging from Bradley Cooper to Olivia Wilde to Emily Blunt gathered at the Creative Impact Awards brunch feting the 22nd edition of Variety‘s 10 Directors to Watch.
On this year’s list of helmers on the rise: Ali Abbasi (“Border”); Alejandra Marquez Abella (“The Good Girls”); Bert & Bertie (“Troupe Zero”); Pippa Blanco (“Share”); Cooper (“A Star is Born”); Kent Jones (“Drake”); Tayarisha Poe (“Selah and the Spades”); Alonso Ruizpalacios (“Museo”); Lulu Wang (“Farewell”); and Wilde (“Booksmart”).
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Cooper “took a film that has been made and remade multiple times before and found something personal to express with it, made a film about the power of celebrity and about what your voice can do and it’s one of the most incredible debuts I’ve seen in a long, long time,” said Variety chief film critic Peter Debruge of Cooper’s “A Star is Born.”
Presented by AT&T and coinciding with the 30th Palm Springs Film Festival, the festive brunch, also sponsored by Cadillac, was packed with some of this year’s most talked-about talent, both in front of and behind the camera, including “Black Panther” helmer Ryan Coogler, honored with the Creative Impact in Directing Award; Blunt, who received the Creative Impact in Acting Award for her work in “Mary Poppins Returns” and “A Quiet Place”; and singer-songwriter Troye Sivan, who received the Creative Conscience Award for his work partnering with the Ally Coalition and the Trevor Project on his Bloom Tour, empowering and supporting the LGBTQ community, and helping to eradicate gay conversion therapy.
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