SAVANNAH, Ga., Nov. 4, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 13th annual Savannah Film Festival, hosted by the Savannah College of Art and Design, presented PR legend Bobby Zarem with a Lifetime Achievement Award on Wednesday, November 3.
"As a child here in Savannah I fantasized about Hollywood and movies," said Zarem upon accepting his award. "And now Savannah has become everything I dreamed about back then. I thank (President of SCAD) Paula Wallace because she has allowed me to live my dreams. I'm touched deeply."
Bobby Zarem was raised in Savannah. After getting a degree from Yale and working a brief stint on Wall Street, Zarem parlayed his childhood fascination with Hollywood and Broadway into a career as the most important and most famous press agent in American history. In his early years with the esteemed firm Rogers & Cowan, Zarem redefined the way publicists work with the press and brought in major clients like Dustin Hoffman and Ann-Margret.
In 1974, Zarem went out on his own and formed Zarem Inc. His promotion of Ken Russell's iconic "Tommy" included a wildly successful premiere party in a New York City subway station—an event that garnered worldwide press. Dubbed "Superflack" by both The New York Times and Newsweek, Zarem promoted movies with enduring impacts on American culture: "Saturday Night Fever," "Pumping Iron," "Rambo," "Scarface," "The China Syndrome," "Dances with Wolves" and "Pee-wee's Big Adventure," to name a few. His creation and promotion of the "I Love New York" campaign revitalized New York City at a time when cultural and economic collapse seemed imminent.
A larger than life presence on the Manhattan social scene, Zarem formed friendships and working relationships with key members of the press, major sports stars, national politicians and other cultural powerbrokers.
While most of Zarem's professional efforts through the years have been uncredited, he has been profiled by The New York Times, The New Yorker, Time, Newsweek, Vanity Fair, Spy and other major publications. Al Pacino played a character based on him in the 2002 movie "People I Know."
For the last decade, Zarem has lured major movies and stars to the Savannah Film Festival. In spring 2010, he moved his base of operations from New York City to his childhood home in Savannah.
Zarem joins a lineup of special guests including Liam Neeson, Sir Ian McKellen and Isabella Rossellini. Neeson received an Achievement in Cinema Award on November 2. McKellen will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award on November 4 and Rossellini will receive an Achievement in Cinema Award on November 5.
The 13th annual Savannah Film Festival is presenting special screenings of the films Darren Aronofsky's "Black Swan," Danny Boyle's "127 Hours," Doug Liman's "Fair Game," Mike Leigh's "Another Year," Ed Burns' "Nice Guy Johnny," Sam Rockwell's "Conviction," Nigel Cole's "Made in Dagenham" and Derek Cianfrance's "Blue Valentine," among others.
For more information, visit www.scad.edu/filmfest.
ABOUT THE SAVANNAH FILM FESTIVAL
Featuring the best in independent and innovative film from around the world, the Savannah Film Festival presents a full-range of cinematic creativity from both award-winning professionals and emerging student filmmakers, bringing world-renowned filmmakers, producers, actors and journalists, as well as other film enthusiasts, to SCAD and Savannah for eight days of feature films, lectures, workshops, panels and competition films from a range of genres. Highlights of the festival include intimate "coffee talks" with film professionals, question-and-answer panels, lectures and special screenings.
SCAD: The University for Creative Careers
The Savannah College of Art and Design is a private, nonprofit, accredited institution that offers bachelor's and master's degree programs in 43 majors. Visit scad.edu.
SOURCE Savannah College of Art and Design