'Slumdog' actress to get breakthrough award

“Slumdog Millionaire” actress Freida Pinto will receive the Breakthrough Performance Award at the 20th annual Palm Springs Film Festival awards gala on Jan. 6.

The Indian-born thesp’s perf as Latika in helmer Danny Boyle’s sleeper hit is her first lead role after starting as a model and TV correspondent in Mumbai. Previous Breakthrough Awards have gone to Marion Cotillard, Jennifer Hudson and Felicity Huffman.

Fest unspools Jan. 6-19. The awards gala kickoff will also honor Sean Penn, Clint Eastwood, Ron Howard, Dustin Hoffman, Anne Hathaway and Gus Van Sant.

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