SANTA BARBARA, Calif.-It seems fitting that on International Women's Day 2022 Penélope Cruz picked up the Montecito Award at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.
When asked about the day on the red carpet leading into the Arlington Theatre Cruz said, "It is a beautiful celebration, we still have a lot to do. We are there celebrating each other,"
This isn't the first time Cruz has been honored at the festival .
In 2008 Cruz was recognized for her performance in Woody Allen's "Vicky Christina Barcelona."
She went on to win the Oscar for the film.
This year she is up for another Academy Award for her performance in Pedro Almodovar's "Parallel Mothers" or "Madres Paralelas."
Many of her fans outside the theatre and the TV reporters spoke to her in Spanish.
The Montecito Award is meant to honor Cruz for her contribution to film.
The honoree said she is dedicating the award to her mother Encarna Sanchez.
"Every time they give me award or I am nominated, it is always who I think about the most, it is my mother, her inspiration and her strength."
Cruz acclaimed husband Javier Bardem attended the event, too, but he did not join her when she made her grand entrance in front of the theatre.
Bardem is up for his second Oscar, as well, for his role in "Being the Ricardos."
On Thursday, Bardem will pick up the Maltin Modern Master Award at SBIFF.
They live in Madrid, Spain with their two children.
Cruz and Bardem are staying in Santa Barbara between their tributes.
"Santa Barbara, I was here once before, also with Pedro ( Almodovar )one time, we have good memories."
She said the festival has always been very generous.
Festival director Roger Durling said for the first time as moderator he was sponsored by a designer.
Durling moderated in a black velvet tux designed by Tom Ford.
But that wasn't why he considers it one of the festivals best tributes, he credits Sophia Loren for that.
A virtual congratulations from Loren brought Cruz to tears before Loren's son Edoardo Ponti presented her with the award.
He commented on how much they had in common, inside and out.
Fans can watch a link to the tribute at SBIFF.