Fest celebrates 'Tender' director

MADRID — For its 55th edition, the San Sebastian Intl. Film Festival will honor longtime Hollywood helmer Henry King, look back at recent Nordic cinema and raise cash prizes in two key sidebars, the festival organization announced Friday.

The 55th San Sebastian fest takes place Sept. 20-29.

The long Hollywood career of Henry King (1892-1982) bridged its silent and golden ages, running into the 1960s. His output is uneven in quality, depending on material and cast, but boasts high-profile adaptations of Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway, a vast genre range and individual films that demonstrate intelligence, such as “Tender Is the Night” (1961), taste, the musical “Carousel” (1956) for instance, and innovation, like the Hong Kong-set “Love Is a Many Splendored Thing” (1955).

As usual with San Sebastian’s lovingly put-together classic retros, the special will be accompanied by a book, edited by the festival and Spain’s Filmoteca Espanola.

The Nordic section, Cold Fever, will showcase some 30 films made from 1995, originating in Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark and Iceland, “a cinema of controlled appearances concealing intense personal dramas,” according to the festival organization.

The hike in cash prizes principally affects the Festival Perlas Zabaltegi sidebar, which showcases outstanding films from recent festivals.

Its TCM Audience Award rises from Euros 30,000 ($40,774) to $95,140 while a new $47,570 prize will be given to the best European film.

The cash prize for best film in the extensive Spain and Latin American panorama, Horizontes Latinos, has been near doubled to $47,570.

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