Penélope Cruz will become the first Spanish actress to achieve this

Oscar winner Penélope Cruz will be adding another prestigious award to her bookshelf. The 43-year-old is set to receive the honorary César Award at France’s Academy of Arts and Techniques of Cinema’s upcoming ceremony — which is the French equivalent to the Oscars — on March 2. Penélope will be the first Spanish actress to receive the award since it was first presented in 1976.

“It’s an honor and an enormous surprise. I didn’t expect it at all. I found out last week and yes, I was very surprised. I’m very happy,” the mom-of-two told reporters, including HOLA!, of the honor on Saturday, February 3, at the 2018 Goya Awards in Madrid.

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penelope-cruz-cesar-award-spanish-actressVIEW GALLERY The Spanish actress is set to receive the honorary César Award in Paris Photo: WENN

Alain Terzian, the president of the Academy of Arts and Techniques of Cinema, called (via VarietyJavier Bardem’s wife a “muse of great filmmakers, a radiant Latin beauty.” He added, “Penelope Cruz has the talent to shine in international productions as much as in [smaller] films, whether [she’s working] for Ridley Scott, Rob Marshall, Kenneth Branagh, Sergio Castellitto, Fernando Trueba or Asghar Farhadi, with whom she has just wrapped Everybody Knows (Todos Lo Saben), which will come out in May.”

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Penélope, who is currently starring in FX’s American Crime Story: Versace, earned her first Academy Award in 2009 for her role in Woody Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona. Two years later in 2011, the Oscar-winning movie star became the first Spanish actress to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

penelope-cruzVIEW GALLERY Penélope was the first Spanish actress to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame Photo: Getty Images

Penélope is following in the footsteps of American actor George Clooney with her latest honor. Amal Clooney’s husband was the recipient of the César Award last year. Michael Douglas, Kate Winslet, Meryl Streep, Jude Law and other prominent Hollywood stars are among previous recipients of France's national film award.

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