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Video Industry Honors Blake Edwards

Lifetime Achievement Award to be presented by VSDA at July Confab. (June 07, 2004)

Filmmaker Blake Edwards will receive the Video Software Dealers Association's Lifetime Achievement Award at VSDA's Home Entertainment 2004. Mr. Edwards will be presented with the award during the Opening Business Session and Awards Ceremonies of the annual industry event on July 14, 2004 at the Venetian Resort Hotel Casino in Las Vegas. The announcement was made today by Bo Andersen, President of VSDA.

"We are extraordinarily honored to present our Lifetime Achievement Award to Mr. Edwards," said VSDA president Bo Andersen. "His incredible film career has made an enormous contribution to the home video industry. Generations of movie lovers everywhere have loved and laughed and continue to enjoy his films - whether it's watching their favorite Pink Panther films again and again or younger audiences now discovering his genius for the first time."

Mr. Edwards' distinguished career as writer, director, and producer has brought him worldwide acclaim for such classic films as Breakfast At Tiffany's, 10, S.O.B., Victor/Victoria, The Party, The Great Race, Blind Date, and The Pink Panther films, the most successful comedy film series ever made.

Other Edwards' classics include such memorable dramatic films as the 1962 Experiment in Terror and the harrowing The Days of Wine and Roses.

During his career of more than five decades, the 49 films he has directed and often written and produced have grossed more than 1.5 billion dollars at the box office.

Blake's career not only encompasses film, but radio, television, and Broadway. Between 1947-1955 he wrote for several radio shows and created (and often wrote and directed) the popular series Richard Diamond: Private Detective. By 1958 he moved into television where he created two innovative and popular television series: Peter Gunn and Mr. Lucky. At the age of 70, Edwards extended his career to Broadway where he wrote, directed, and produced the mega-hit Victor/Victoria starring his wife, Julie Andrews.

This year Edwards was recognized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences with its highest honor, an honorary Oscar. Other awards include the French Legion of Honor, the Italian David di Donatello Award, the Director's Guild Preston Sturges Award, and the Writers Guild Laurel Award.

Edwards joins a distinguished pantheon of previous VSDA Lifetime Achievement Award winners, including Robert Duvall, Bob Hope, Anthony Hopkins, Gene Kelly, Jack Lemmon, Gregory Peck, Sydney Poitier, and Jimmy Stewart.

Attendees may register for the event online at or by phone by calling 888-778-8892 or 218-723-9130. All Access badges are $345 for VSDA members and $395 for non-members prior to June 18 cut-off date. Exhibits and Conference badges are $95 for VSDA members and $145 for non-members prior to June 18. After June 18, All Access badges are $425 for VSDA members and $475 for non-members and Exhibits and Conferences badges are $125 for VSDA members and $175 for non-members. All Access badges provide entry to sponsored events, the opening ceremony, seminars, exhibit suites, and exhibit floor. Exhibits and Conferences badges provide entry to the seminars, exhibit suites, and the exhibit floor only.

Companies interested in exhibiting may contact Home Entertainment Events' Kimbirly Orr at [email protected] (mainstream companies) or Janet Gibson at [email protected] (adult companies).

VSDA's Home Entertainment 2004, the Home Entertainment Retail Expo, and the AVN Adult Entertainment Expo are organized through Home Entertainment Events, in which the Video Software Dealers Association is a partner. For more information about Home Entertainment Events and its shows, please send an e-mail to [email protected]

Established in 1981, the Video Software Dealers Association (VSDA) is the not-for-profit international trade association for the $22 billion home entertainment industry. VSDA represents more than 1,200 companies throughout the United States, Canada, and a dozen other countries. Its members operate more than 12,500 retail outlets in the U.S. that sell and/or rent DVDs, VHS cassettes, and console video games. Membership comprises the full spectrum of video retailers (from single-store operators to large chains), video distributors, the home video divisions of major and independent motion picture studios, and other related businesses that constitute and support the home video entertainment industry.

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