Alejandro G. Inarritu Honored with Vanguard Award at Sundance Institute Celebration

After picking up three Oscars at this year’s Academy Awards, Alejandro G. Inarritu isn’t done collecting honors. The “Birdman” director was presented with the Vanguard Leadership Award at the fifth Sundance Institute Celebration benefit hosted by Acura and held at 3 Labs in Los Angeles.

“I don’t deserve an award for what I do with joy and freely, but I thank you for it,” said Inarritu.

Also being honored with the Vanguard Award was Marielle Heller, writer-director of “The Diary of a Teenage Girl,” which premiered to raves at this year’s Sundance Film Festival.

Based on the graphic novel by Phoebe Gloeckner and starring Kristen Wiig, “Diary” was developed at Sundance’s director and screenwriter labs. “For me, the Sundance Labs were a totally transformative experience,” Heller said in her speech. “It’s where I became a director.”

Heller was presented her award by comedian and filmmaker Mike Birbiglia, who joked, “When Sundance Institute asked me to present this award, I said, ‘Come on! You should get Kristen Wiig.’ They said, ‘We tried.’”

Inarritu’s award was presented by “Selma” director Ava DuVernay, a Sundance Institute board member who she said “believes in the values of independence and innovation that Sundance embraces and as a presenter of an award to a filmmaker who exemplifies those values in his body of work.”

Inarritu noted the significance of the Vanguard Award, saying, “It’s Sundance that’s the real vanguard, keeping stories that protect the integrity of the world of sonic images. We are all the vanguard. We have to protect the importance of culture. Art is created because the world is not perfect.”

More Film

  • Predator Comic-Con panel

    'The Predator' Teases Battling Aliens at Gory Comic-Con Panel

    After picking up three Oscars at this year’s Academy Awards, Alejandro G. Inarritu isn’t done collecting honors. The “Birdman” director was presented with the Vanguard Leadership Award at the fifth Sundance Institute Celebration benefit hosted by Acura and held at 3 Labs in Los Angeles. “I don’t deserve an award for what I do with joy […]

  • Durban FilmMart, CaribbeanTales Push Co-Productions for

    Durban FilmMart, CaribbeanTales Push Co-Prod Opportunities for Women of Color

    After picking up three Oscars at this year’s Academy Awards, Alejandro G. Inarritu isn’t done collecting honors. The “Birdman” director was presented with the Vanguard Leadership Award at the fifth Sundance Institute Celebration benefit hosted by Acura and held at 3 Labs in Los Angeles. “I don’t deserve an award for what I do with joy […]

  • New Line Comic Con

    Everything We Saw From 'It 2' During New Line's Scare Diego Comic-Con Presentation

    After picking up three Oscars at this year’s Academy Awards, Alejandro G. Inarritu isn’t done collecting honors. The “Birdman” director was presented with the Vanguard Leadership Award at the fifth Sundance Institute Celebration benefit hosted by Acura and held at 3 Labs in Los Angeles. “I don’t deserve an award for what I do with joy […]

  • Lin Manuel MirandaVanity Fair Oscar Party,

    Lin-Manuel Miranda to Make Directorial Debut With 'Tick, Tick...Boom!'

    After picking up three Oscars at this year’s Academy Awards, Alejandro G. Inarritu isn’t done collecting honors. The “Birdman” director was presented with the Vanguard Leadership Award at the fifth Sundance Institute Celebration benefit hosted by Acura and held at 3 Labs in Los Angeles. “I don’t deserve an award for what I do with joy […]

  • Mark Duplass

    Mark Duplass Apologizes for 'Disaster' Tweet Praising Ben Shapiro

    After picking up three Oscars at this year’s Academy Awards, Alejandro G. Inarritu isn’t done collecting honors. The “Birdman” director was presented with the Vanguard Leadership Award at the fifth Sundance Institute Celebration benefit hosted by Acura and held at 3 Labs in Los Angeles. “I don’t deserve an award for what I do with joy […]

  • Enter The Dragon Bruce Lee

    How Bruce Lee's Star Rose in the U.S. After His Death

    After picking up three Oscars at this year’s Academy Awards, Alejandro G. Inarritu isn’t done collecting honors. The “Birdman” director was presented with the Vanguard Leadership Award at the fifth Sundance Institute Celebration benefit hosted by Acura and held at 3 Labs in Los Angeles. “I don’t deserve an award for what I do with joy […]

  • Second Act

    Jennifer Lopez Reinvents Her Life in 'Second Act' Trailer

    After picking up three Oscars at this year’s Academy Awards, Alejandro G. Inarritu isn’t done collecting honors. The “Birdman” director was presented with the Vanguard Leadership Award at the fifth Sundance Institute Celebration benefit hosted by Acura and held at 3 Labs in Los Angeles. “I don’t deserve an award for what I do with joy […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content