Penélope Cruz in Madres Paralelas (Parallel Mothers). 2021. Spain. Written and directed by Pedro Almodóvar. Courtesy Sony Pictures Classics

The Museum of Modern Art’s 2021 Film Benefit, presented by CHANEL, will honor Academy Award–winning actress Penélope Cruz on December 14. This year’s Film Benefit returns to an in-person celebration and program that recognizes Cruz’s acclaimed work.

Cruz, an Ambassador for CHANEL since 2018, has been nominated for three Academy Awards, winning the Best Supporting Actress award in 2009 for her role in Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008). She most recently won the Volpi Cup for Best Actress at the Venice Film Festival for her work in the new film Parallel Mothers (2021), which will be released in the United States on December 24. MoMA will screen Parallel Mothers on December 15 as a part of its annual series, The Contenders, which showcases the year’s most noteworthy films bound for awards glory. Tickets for the screening of Parallel Mothers will be released to MoMA members on December 1, and to the general public on December 8.

“Penélope Cruz has mesmerized cinema audiences since 1992 as an artist who is as compelling in action-adventures as she is in auteur driven pictures,” said Rajendra Roy, The Celeste Bartos Chief Curator of Film at MoMA. “Perhaps most beloved for her collaborations with Pedro Almodovar, her smashing performance in his film Parallel Mothers cements her status as an artist of global stature. The first Spanish actress to be nominated for and win an Academy Award, Penélope Cruz is truly in a category all her own.”

On the occasion of the Museum’s 14th annual Film Benefit, presented by CHANEL, MoMA will present a series of five films to honor Penélope Cruz’s vast and varied career. From November 19-30, the series will feature screenings of recent films including Everybody Knows (2018) and other well-known films such as Volver (2006) and Blow (2001).

Since 2011, CHANEL has been a proud sponsor of The Museum of Modern Art’s annual Film Benefit and has served as lead sponsor of film at MoMA since 2021. As a long-time patron of art and cinema, CHANEL is committed to supporting film as one of art’s most potent mediums by creating opportunities to elevate and amplify the voices of film’s most talented and audacious storytellers and through the preservation of cinema’s legacy worldwide. CHANEL is delighted to partner with MoMA to share its vast film collection and preserve this critical art form for future generations by restoring some of the industry’s most treasured works.

Founded in 1935, MoMA’s Department of Film cares for more than 30,000 films and 1.5 million film stills, and has one of the strongest international film collections, ranging from classics to the most innovative and experimental works of today. The Film Benefit enables the continued maintenance and growth of this important collection, as well as virtual programming and an ambitious schedule of film series, premieres, festivals, and retrospectives.

Previous MoMA Film Benefit honorees include George Clooney, Laura Dern, Martin Scorsese, Julianne Moore, Tom Hanks, Cate Blanchett, Alfonso Cuarón, Tilda Swinton, Quentin Tarantino, Pedro Almodóvar, Kathryn Bigelow, Tim Burton, and Baz Luhrmann.

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