The annual pre-Oscars event comprising movies and music and celebrating showbiz ties between Italy and Hollywood will run Feb. 15-20 at the Hollywood and Highland Center.
The award, named in memory of long-time MPAA president Jack Valenti, will be presented to Minnelli on the evening of Feb. 20 during the fest’s closing night ceremonies.
“We are extremely honored and delighted to be presenting this year’s Jack Valenti Legend Award to the talented and lovely Liza Minnelli,” enthused fest topper Pascal Vicedomini and its honorary chair Mark Canton in a statement. “As in prior years our board aims to recognize highly talented Italian-Americans who have made an impact on the industry and without a doubt, Liza fits the bill.”
Al Pacino and Anjelica Huston are the prize’s prior recipients.
Jimmy Kimmel is also being honored by L.A.Italia this year, with its Award of Excellence.
As previously announced, the event will celebrate the centennial of Frank Sinatra’s birth with a performance by Italian tenor Vittorio Grigolo, known for his “Pavarotti Ping,” and a selection of films from Sinatra’s career, including “Some Came Running,” “From Here To Eternity,” “The Man with the Golden Arm,” “Guys and Dolls,” “The Manchurian Candidate,” “Ocean’s 11″ and “On the Town.”
As for Italian pics, L.A. Italia will open with the world premiere of director Marco Pontecorvo’s comedy “Partly Cloudy (With Sunny Spells),” a bittersweet tale about contemporary Italy’s vices and virtues starring John Turturro and Italy’s Luca Zingaretti (“Montalbano”).
L.A. Italia is a sister event to two Italian fests, Capri-Hollywood and Ischia Global, both founded by Vicedomini and dedicated to establishing a creative and business bridge between Hollywood and Italy’s film and showbiz communities.