Geoffrey Rush, Benicio Del Toro coming to Karlovy Vary International Film Festival

Academy Award-winning actors Geoffrey Rush and Benicio Del Toro are headed to this year’s Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, organizers announced this morning. Rush won an Oscar for Best Actor for 1996’s Shine, while Del Toro was awarded Best Supporting Actor for 2000’s Traffic.

Both actors will attend the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival’s closing ceremony on July 9, where they will receive KVIFF awards. Rush will receive the festival’s Crystal Globe for Outstanding Artistic Contribution to World Cinema while Del Toro will be presented the KVIFF President’s Award.

Geoffrey Rush was largely a stage presence when he was cast in Scott Hicks’ Shine, but the actor became an overnight sensation in the Oscar-winning role of Pianist David Helfgott. He has since delivered memorable turns in Oscar-winning films such as Shakespeare in Love and The King’s Speech as well as anchoring the Pirates of the Caribbean series alongside Johnny Depp.

At the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival this year, Rush-starring films Shine, Quills, and The King’s Speech will be screened as a tribute to the actor.

Rush is also no stranger to Prague. The Australian actor previously starred in 1998’s Les Misérables, which was filmed throughout the streets of the Czech capital, as well as 2013’s The Best Offer, which was partially shot on location in Prague. More recently, the actor starred as Albert Einstein in the TV series Genius, which was also filmed in the Czech capital.

Benicio Del Toro had appeared in Miami Vice and the James Bond film License to Kill in the 1980s, but it was his scene-stealing work as a mumble-mouthed criminal in The Usual Suspects that made him a star.

The actor would go on to star in films such as Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Snatch, 21 Grams, and Steven Soderbergh’s Traffic, which would earn him an Academy Award. More recently, the actor has appeared in the Marvel (Guardians of the Galaxy) and Star Wars (The Last Jedi) franchises, as well as Sicario and its sequel Day of the Soldado.

Del Toro will next be seen alongside Justin Timberlake and Alicia Silverstone in Reptile, and Robert Downey Jr., Jamie Foxx, and Gerard Butler in All-Star Weekend.

As a tribute to Del Toro, the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival will screen both The Usual Suspects and Traffic.

A special guest for the festival’s opening ceremony on Saturday, July 2, has yet to be announced. Last year, Michael Caine was awarded at the festival’s opening ceremony, while Johnny Depp and Ethan Hawke appeared at the close.

This year’s Karlovy Vary International Film Festival takes place from July 1-9. Read more about some of the films playing at this year’s fest here and keep an eye peeled for more announcements over the next two weeks.


Jason Pirodsky

Jason Pirodsky

Jason Pirodsky has been writing about the Prague film scene and reviewing films in print and online media since 2005. A member of the Online Film Critics Society, you can also catch his musings on life in Prague at and tips on mindfulness sourced from ancient principles at

One Response

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *