2013 Independent Spirit Awards nominations winners and losers
As always, the Spirits are an intriguing beast. Originally a fly by the seat of your pants awards show meant to give exposure to indie films they couldn't find anywhere else the Spirits have morphed into a prestigious honor that people in the industry actually care about. This year it appears the nominating committees got it mostly right. Sure, there's that always sticky $20 million or less budget figure qualification no one wants to pay attention to (until they do) and some blatant omissions here and there. But, at the end of the day the Spirits still provide an important platform for new filmmakers to make their mark with moviegoers and the larger movie industry. Taking that into account, here are the winners and losers after the announcement of the 2013 Independent Spirit Awards nominees this morning.
Winner: "Beasts of the Southern Wild"
With four nominations and two wins at the Gothams last night, Searchlight has to be relieved "Beasts" is getting the late push it needs to secure that best picture Oscar nod. A slew of expected top 10 lists next month should seal the deal.
Winner: "Silver Linings Playbook"
Is the film's budget $16 million or $21 million? Only the accountants know for sure, but the film's Spirits leading five nominations is a nice boost to an Oscar campaign that was once battling for frontrunner status.
Loser: Ezra Miller
Easily one of the more acclaimed supporting performances of the year, somehow Miller's great turn in "Perks of a Wallflower" was ignored by the nominating committee. Sam Rockwell and Bruce Willis must just have more cache. Sad.
Loser: David Ayer and Jake Gyllenhaal
Michael Pena deservedly earned his first Spirit Award nod for a fantastic performance in "End of Watch," but what about screenwriter/director David Ayer and star Jake Gyllenhaal? "Watch" was a critic's favorite and a major indie hit. It was independently produced at just $7 million and grossed almost $40 million. Moreover, you expanded the best male lead category to six nods and Gyllenhaal still didn't get in? Embarrassing.
As we predicted, the committee went gaga for "Bernie." With strong Film Independent credentials (it was the opening night of the org.'s LA Film Festival in 2011) and an indie story to treasure (rejected by all the mini majors only to become an art house hit for Millennium), "Bernie" was destined to be one of the top best feature film nominees. Jack Black's best male lead nod? Icing on the cake.
Winner: "Middle of Nowhere"
Underrated so much that's its now possibly overrated, "Nowhere" didn't make the top category of best feature film, but still managed an impressive 4 nominations including the John Cassavetes Award, best female lead, best supporting female and best supporting male. Wowzers.
Loser: The Foreign Films committee
No "Holy Motors" among the best foreign film nominees? "Once Upon A Time in Anatolia" and "War Witch" are better films? "Motors" exclusion is hands down the most embarrassing omission of the day.
Winner: CBS Films
"Seven Psychopaths" provided CBS Films with its first two Spirit Awards nominations for best supporting male (Sam Rockwell) and best screenplay (Martin McDonagh) and it's first major awards nominations of any kind. Next stop, the Globes?
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1995 | Mystery | NRSummary: Denzel Washington plays an out of work WWII vet who takes the wrong job and is soon neck-deep in a mess of politics, murder, and jazz in '40s Los Angeles.Director: Carl Franklin
Cast: Denzel Washington, Tom Sizemore, Jennifer Beals
1997 | Crime | RSummary: Quentin Tarantino adaptats an Elmore Leonard novel into this story of a few increasingly desperate people scraping to get by. It has deep soul, a wicked sense of humor, and Samuel L. Jackson, Robert De Niro, Pam Grier, and Robert Forster.Director: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: Pam Grier, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Forster
2013 | Thriller | RSummary: Based on the true story of Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) a Miami bodybuilder who wants to live the American dream. He would like to have the money that other people have. So he enlists the help of fellow bodybuilder Adrian Doorbal (Anthony Mackie) and ex-convict, Christian bodybuilder Paul Doyle (D...Director: Michael Bay
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Anthony Mackie, Tony Shalhoub
2013 | Drama | RSummary: Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill have boundless energy in the story of a real-life commodities crook who earned millions through scummy small-time stock trades.Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie
2007 | Comedy | PGSummary: Newlyweds Nick (Ice Cube) and Suzanne (Long) decide to move to the suburbs to provide a better life for their two kids. But their idea of a dream home is disturbed by a contractor (McGinley) with a bizarre approach to business.Director: Steve Carr
Cast: John C. McGinley, Ice Cube, Nia Long, Aleisha Allen
1996 | Crime | RSummary: Jerry, a small-town Minnesota car salesman is bursting at the seams with debt... but he's got a plan. He's going to hire two thugs to kidnap his wife in a scheme to collect a hefty ransom from his wealthy father-in-law. It's going to be a snap and nobody's going to get hurt... until people start ...Director: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Cast: William H. Macy, Frances McDormand, Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare
2013 | Comedy | NRSummary: Insanely funny comedy show created by Amy Schumer, who stars in brilliantly funny sketches about sex, city living, dating, and friendship.Director: Daniel Powell, Amy Schumer (creators)
Cast: Amy Schumer, Kevin Kane, Mike Houston
1993 | Sports | PGSummary: Emotionally powerful sports classic featuring Sean Astin as a skinny high school kid with big football dreams and the determination to make his way towards his dream team at Notre Dame.Director: David Anspaugh
Cast: Sean Astin, Jon Favreau, Ned Beatty
2008 | Science Fiction | PGSummary: Animated series continues the story of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker as they battle the Emperor Palpatine, Count Dooku and General Grievous, but also takes time to explore other smaller characters in the Star Wars universe.Director: George Lucas (creator)
Cast: Tom Kane, Dee Bradley Baker, Matt Lanter
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