Academy Award winner Benicio Del Toro will receive the Piper-Heidsieck Tribute to Independent Vision at next year's Sundance Film Festival. The tribute, which will be presented to Del Toro on Jan 13, 2002, during the festival, was created to honour a film artist "who has made a significant and unique contribution to independent film."

Del Toro won the Oscar last year for Best Supporting Actor in Steven Soderbergh's Traffic. His other film credits include Christopher McQuarrie's Way Of The Gun, Sean Penn's Indian Runner and The Pledge, Julian Schnabel's Basquiat, Abel Ferrara's The Funeral, Guy Ritchie's Snatch and Terry Gilliam's Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas.

The ten previous recipients of the tribute are Julianne Moore (2001), Kevin Spacey (2000), Laura Dern (1999), Frances MacDormand (1998), Tim Robbins (1997), Dianne Wiest (1996), Nicolas Cage (1995), Gena Rowlands (1994), Denzel Washington (1993), and John Turturro (1992).