Lupita Nyong'o
Lupita Nyong'o

The 25th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival will honor Lupita Nyong’o with the Breakthrough Performance Award for her turn as young slave Patsy in “12 Years a Slave,” and Thomas Newman with the Frederick Loewe Award for Film Composing for Disney’s “Saving Mr. Banks” at its annual Awards Gala on January 4. 

Newcomer Nyong’o has already been scoring some honors from critics’ circles -- the LA film critics voted her Best Supporting Actress, while the Boston critics placed her as runner up. Meanwhile Newman, an 11-time Oscar nominee ("Skyfall," "WALL-E"), is in the running to nab another nomination for "Saving Mr. Banks."

Previously announced gala honorees are Nyong'o's "12 Years a Slave" director Steve McQueen, Sandra Bullock, Bruce Dern, Matthew McConaughey and Julia Roberts. 

Past recipients of the Breakthrough Performance Award include Mariah Carey, Marion Cotillard, Jennifer Hudson, Felicity Huffman, Carey Mulligan and Jeremy Renner.  In the years they were honored, Cotillard and Hudson went on to win Academy Awards, while Huffman and Renner received Oscar nominations.

The Festival runs January 3-13, 2014.