Palm Springs, CA (April 3, 2023) – Harold Matzner will step down as Chairman of the Palm Springs International Film Festival after two decades of leadership. Nachhattar Chandi, President and CEO of Chandi Group USA, will become the new chairman beginning today overseeing the Palm Springs International Film Society and the upcoming Palm Springs International Film Festival taking place January 4-15, 2024.
Matzner served as Chairman starting in 2000 and was instrumental in turning the Palm Springs International Film Festival and Film Awards into a world-class event and a key stop during awards season. He will continue to be active in the film festival and Film Awards. Matzner said, “Chandi is a very successful and strong leader, and we are so lucky that he is interested taking on this role with the festival.”
Chandi is a recognized and honored leader with more than 30 years’ experience and is a decisively driven entrepreneur who owns and operates over 30 businesses, with over 700 employees across the Coachella Valley and throughout the state of California. He said, “The festival is important to the Coachella Valley and the community, and I want to help carry on that legacy.”
The 2023 Palm Springs International Film Festival screened 134 films from 64 countries, opening with the World Premiere of 80 For Brady. The 2023 Palm Springs International Film Awards honored Austin Butler (Breakthrough Performance Award, Actor), Cate Blanchett (Desert Palm Achievement Award, Actress), Viola Davis (Chairman’s Award), Danielle Deadwyler (Breakthrough Performance Award, Actress), Colin Farrell (Desert Palm Achievement Award, Actor), Brendan Fraser (Spotlight Award, Actor), Bill Nighy (International Star Award, Actor), Sarah Polley (Director of the Year Award), Michelle Yeoh (International Star Award), and The Fabelmans (Vanguard Award), presented to director Steven Spielberg, producer Kristie Macosko Krieger and cast members Michelle Williams, Paul Dano, Seth Rogen, Gabriel LaBelle and Judd Hirsch. Eight out of the 10 Film Award honorees received Academy Award nominations with three of them receiving Academy Award wins including Brendan Fraser for Best Actor, Sarah Polley for Best Adapted Screenplay, Michelle Yeoh for Best Actress, as well as presenter Jamie Lee Curtis for Best Supporting Actress.
About the Palm Springs International Film Society
The Palm Springs International Film Society is a 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit organization whose mission is to cultivate and promote the art and science of film through education and cross-cultural awareness. The Film Society produces the Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) and Film Awards every January and Palm Springs ShortFest in June. In addition to curating the best in international cinema, PSIFF’s Film Awards has come to be known as the first stop on the campaign trail for the Academy Awards® and our Oscar®-qualifying ShortFest is the largest short film festival and market in North America. Our festivals, year-round member screenings and educational programs manifest our organization’s mission by nurturing and encouraging new filmmaking talent, honoring the great masters of world cinema, and expanding audience horizons.
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Steven Wilson– Scenario Communications