Lionsgate drama honored by producers

The Producers Guild of America has selected “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire” as the winner of its Stanley Kramer Award.

The film’s producers will be feted at the 21st Annual PGA Awards ceremony on Jan. 24 at the Hollywood Palladium.

The award was established in 2002 to honor works illuminating “provocative social issues in an accessible and elevating fashion” in honor of Kramer, whose films include “The Caine Mutiny,” “High Noon,” “The Defiant Ones,” and “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.” Previous recipients include “Milk,” “The Great Debaters,” “An Inconvenient Truth,” “Good Night, and Good Luck,” “Hotel Rwanda,” “Innocent Voices,” “In America,” “Antwone Fisher” and “I Am Sam.”

“Precious,” set in Harlem in 1987, stars Gabourey Sidibe as a 16-year-old African-American girl pregnant for the second time by her absent father and abused by her mother.

“‘Precious’ is a remarkable film that sends a powerful message of hope – brilliantly reminding us that we have the power to persevere regardless of life’s difficulties. Stanley Kramer’s legacy is ideally celebrated with the selection of this very worthy film,” said PGA Awards Co-Chairs David Friendly and Laurence Mark.

The pic’s been honored with the Toronto Film Festival’s Cadillac People’s Choice Award, and as an Official Selection at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival – Un Certain Regard. It also won awards at Sundance including the Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award in the U.S. Dramatic Competition.

“Precious” has grossed $8.7 million for Lionsgate in its first 10 days even though it’s been in only 174 venues. Film’s produced by Lee Daniels, Sarah Siegel-Magness, and Gary Magness. Oprah Winfrey, Tyler Perry, Lisa Cortés, and Tom Heller are exec producers.

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