Campus: Northridge -- August 18, 2006

Hollywood Foreign Press Awards CSUN $50,000 for Student Projects

While Oscar winners Jack Nicholson and Annette Bening looked on, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association awarded Cal State Northridge's Cinema and Television Arts Department a $50,000 grant for scholarships during a star-studded luncheon at the Beverly Hills Hotel yesterday.

The gift will fund senior film projects, which are required for graduation and screened each spring during Northridge's annual student film showcase.

"Our students have to come up with their own money to make their films," said cinema and television arts professor Nate Thomas, who heads the university's film option. "This gift from the foreign press association literally means the difference between our students' dreams and the realization of those dreams."

The grant was presented during the Hollywood Foreign Press Association's annual installation luncheon honoring its 2006-2007 slate of officers.

Among the celebrities in attendance were Jenna Elfman, Bill Condon, James Franco, Dustin Hoffman, Lisa Kudrow, Diane Lane, Edward James Olmos, Christina Ricci, Mark Ruffalo and Forest Whitaker. Actress Felicity Huffman presented CSUN with its award.

In addition to CSUN, the American Film Institute, California Institute for the Arts, Cal State Long Beach, Columbia University and UCLA all received money for scholarships. Northridge, Cal Arts and UCLA received the largest amounts, $50,000 each.

Thomas said most people don't realize the impact the association has outside the entertainment industry.

"They provide money to a host of charities and educational institutions. Their gifts have made an impact on a lot of lives," he said.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association is comprised of international journalists who report on the entertainment industry. It hosts the Golden Globes Awards each year. During the past 12 years, the association has granted more than $6.5 million in charitable donations, more than $1 million this year alone.

Contact: Carmen Ramos Chandler, (818) 677-2130,

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