The Producers Guild of America will bestow its Stanley Kramer Award on Sean Penn at the group's awards ceremony Jan. 22. The award honors Penn for his efforts to explore social efforts. Associated Press

LOS ANGELESĀ  - Sean Penn is receiving an award from Hollywood producers honoring his efforts to explore social issues.

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The Producers Guild of America will bestow its Stanley Kramer Award on Penn at the group's awards ceremony Jan. 22. The award is named for filmmaker Kramer, whose issue-oriented productions include "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner" and "The Defiant Ones."

Penn is the first individual to receive the Kramer Award. In the past, the award has been handed out for socially minded films such as "An Inconvenient Truth," "Hotel Rwanda" and Penn's own "I Am Sam."

Paula Wagner, chair of the Producers Guild Awards, says Penn is a committed activist who has "shed light on powerful stories, causes and individuals."

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