The Princess Grace Foundation-USA (PGF-USA) is proud to announce that filmmaker James Cameron will accept the distinguished Prince Rainier III Award for his outstanding contributions to the arts and his exemplary give-back.

Mr. Cameron will be honored at the Princess Grace Awards Gala in Beverly Hills on October 25, 2017. The Foundation will also introduce the Stephen Hillenburg Animation Scholarship, a gift awarded annually in support of emerging animators in the film category. The evening will include a special dance performance by past Princess Grace Award winners Michelle Dorrance, Jason Samuels Smith, and Joseph Wiggan.

The 2017 Princess Grace Awards Gala celebrates the Foundation’s 35th Anniversary and continues the legacy of Princess Grace (Kelly) of Monaco, who helped emerging artists pursue their artistic goals during Her lifetime. In total, the Foundation is awarding over $1 million to artists in theater, dance, and film. In the presence of Their Serene Highnesses The Prince and The Princess of Monaco, the evening is co-chaired by Wallis Annenberg and Katia and Sidney Toledano. Major Gala supporters include: Christian Dior Couture as Presenting Sponsor, and The Annenberg Foundation and Karen and Rod Gancas as Crown Sponsors.

The Prince Rainier III Award recognizes a renowned leader in the arts whose own accomplishments are coupled with demonstrated service to their community. Past recipients of the Award include Julie Andrews, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Glenn Close, Queen Latifah, George Lucas, Mandy Patinkin, Sibylle and Robert Redford, Twyla Tharp, Pauletta and Denzel Washington, Cicely Tyson, and Dick Van Dyke. The Prince Rainier III Award includes a grant of $25,000 to the philanthropic organization of the recipient’s choice and a uniquely designed sculpture by artist Alex Soldier. Soldier designed a stunning work of art incorporating symbols representing all three disciplines lauded by the Foundation: theater, dance, and film.

His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco said, “It is my distinct privilege to present the Prince Rainier III Award to James Cameron. He is one of Hollywood’s most iconic filmmakers and dedicated philanthropists. His revolutionary work has transformed the film industry and at the same time he has helped explore the deepest parts of the oceans to help advance science and protect our most vital resources. There is no one more fitting to receive this accolade.”

PGF-USA is also thrilled to announce the Stephen Hillenburg Animation Award. Karen and Stephen Hillenburg have endowed the Foundation with a gift which will encourage and assist future animators to develop and hone their crafts. Stephen, the creator of “SpongeBob SquarePants,” received his Princess Grace Award in 1991 and a Statue Award in 2002. He is the first Princess Grace Award winner to honor the Foundation with the gift of such a scholarship.

PGF-USA Executive Director Toby Boshak said: “We are so grateful to Stephen and Karen for graciously endowing the Foundation with this generous gift, allowing emerging animators to thrive in the same way Stephen did upon receiving his Princess Grace Award. We have enthusiastically watched his career skyrocket, becoming one of the most successful animators in history and creator of one of the most beloved cartoon characters, ‘SpongeBob SquarePants.’ We couldn’t be more pleased to announce this new and exciting award.”

In addition, to James Cameron’s Prince Rainier III Award, past Princess Grace Award winners, screenwriter Bridget Carpenter and choreographer Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards will receive 2017 Princess Grace Statue Awards for their continuing excellence in their chosen disciplines.

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