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Variety brunch honors rising directors at film festival

By Natalie Brunell, KESQ News Channel 3 & CBS Local 2 Reporter, Natalie.Brunell@kesq.com
Published On: Jan 05 2014 08:16:10 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 06 2014 11:52:06 AM CST

Variety brunch honors rising directors at film festival.  Natalie Brunell talked with the stars. 

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. -

It was a star-studded morning at the annual Variety brunch to unveil 2014's 10 directors to watch. Our cameras weren't allowed inside the brunch but we caught up with the honorees before the event.   

"I'm just delighted to be included with this other exciting talent," said Ben Falcone, one of the 10 directors honored.

Falcone, whose directorial debut, 'Tammy', stars wife and comedic superstar Melissa McCarthy.  

"Pretend you're not here while I talk about you! [as she looks at her husband Falcone] I think it's his [Falcone's] ability to see the big picture and the minutia at the same time," McCarthy said.

Creative Impact Award for Directing honoree John Lee Hancock revealed the key to his directing success for the highly acclaimed film Saving Mr. Banks.

"The first thing you do is hire Tom Hanks. It's the first time Walt Disney was portrayed in a movie so you have to take special care," Hancock said.  

"It was one of the more beautiful experiences I've had in 15 years of doing films," said Colin Farrell, who also stars in the film and presented Hancock with the award.

Hancock also offered this advice to the 10 up-and-comers:

"Do what you love, don't try to change the market because you can't predict it."

While directors took the spotlight, Variety also presented a Creative Impact Award in acting to Jonah Hill.  

"I don't know if I've ever won an award before, so to get an award for acting from Variety this is very meaningful, and it really makes me appreciate to get to do what I do for a living," Hill said.