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Steve Carell will be saluted as performer of the year at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival in ceremonies on Feb. 6.

Carell will receive a tribute celebrating his performance in Bennett Miller’s “Foxcatcher.” SBIFF executive director Roger Durling commented, “He’s made us laugh for so many years with his great comedic abilities, but he shows this year that his range and artistry runs deep with his career-changing performance in ‘Foxcatcher.’  He is unrecognizable physically and emotionally.”

The Sony Pictures Classics release opened Nov. 14 with a strong $288,113 on six screens or a $48,019 per-screen average in a limited bow. Carell, Miller and the film itself have been stirring up Oscar buzz since it debuted at Cannes in May.

Carell made his bigscreen debut in the 1991 “Curly Sue.” He has scored onscreen in such films as “The 40-Year-Old-Virgin,” “Little Miss Sunshine” and “Crazy, Stupid, Love,” but his work as the real-life John du Pont in “Foxchanger” was a gamechanger. The fest’s outstanding performer award in the last two years has gone to Cate Blanchett (2014) and Jennifer Lawrence (2013).

The Santa Barbara Fest runs Jan. 27-Feb. 7. Award ceremonies will be held at the Arlington Theatre on Feb. 6. The festival, which is dedicated to discovering and showcasing independent and international cinema and is celebrating its 30th anniversary, will offer more than 200 films and events.