J K Simmons will be honored with the 2009 Starz Denver Film Festival’s John Cassavetes Award.

Simmons, who will next be seen in Jason Reitman’s Up In The Air and whose previous credits include Juno, the Spider-Man franchise and Burn After Reading, will receive the award on November 22.

The John Cassavetes Award was established in 1989 in collaboration with his widow Gena Rowlands and is presented annually to an individual who has made “a significant contribution to the world of film-making and whose work reflects the spirit of the late John Cassavetes.”

The first recipient of the award was Steven Soderbergh and recent honourees include Sean Penn, Nick Nolte, Kevin Bacon and Bill Pullman.