Wednesday, November 28, 2012

2012 Award Season: Independant Spirit Awards

The Independent Spirit Award nominations were released today marking the start of the 2012 Award season that will not end till February 24th when the Oscars are announced. 
What do the nominations tell us about what could be nominated for Oscars? Not much.  Obviously being independent most of these movies are smaller budget and played in very few theaters. 
A lot of them are mostly festival favorites.  But let’s take a look at some of the highlights. 

The two movies that got the most nominations are Moonrise Kingdom and Silver Linings Playbook with 5 each. Pretty much securing them an Oscar spot. 

Moonrise Kingdom was nominated for Best Feature, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor (Bruce Willis), Best Cinematography, and Best Screenplay. 
While the buzz on Moonrise Kingdom has been waning these nominations can give it a boost and it might get a Best Picture nom.  The biggest surprise here is the nomination of Bruce Willis.  He has not been getting much buzz for the role but I don’t think this nomination will increase his chances at the Oscars.

Silver Linings Playbook was nominated for Best Feature, Best Director, Best Male Lead (Bradley Cooper), Best Female Lead (Jennifer Lawrence), and Best Screenplay.
No big surprises here.  All these nominations are also front runners for Oscars and just reinforces them as the top contenders.  Maybe the biggest surprise is the lack of nomination of Robert De Niro for Best Supporting Actor which might hurt his Oscar chances.

The other movie that continues to get lots of buzz and will likely get an Oscar Best Picture nom is Beasts of the Southern Wild which had 4 nominations. Best Feature, Best Director, Best Female Lead (Quvenzhane Wallis), and Best Cinematography.

The biggest surprise of the nominations is the love for Matthew McConaughey who earned not 1 but 2 nominations.  First for Best Male Lead for the Killer Joe and Best Supporting Male for Magic Mike.  While there has been some buzz surrounding his performance in Magic Mike I am not sure anyone expected him to get nominated for Killer Joe.  The big question is will this increase his chances for a Best Supporting Oscar for Magic Mike

Another movie that has been getting lots of buzz (and one of my favorites of the year) The Sessions scored only 2 nominations for Best Lead Actor (John Hawkes) and Best Supporting Female (Helen Hunt) but failed to score Best Feature, Director, or Screenplay.  While I think the acting nominations are a lock for the Oscars the failure to get a Best Feature nomination could hurt its chances for a Best Picture nom Oscar. 

Other noteworthy nominations:
End of Watch which got very little buzz when released scored 2 nominations Best Supporting Male (Michael Pena) and Best Cinematography.  It could help give Michael Pena a little more buzz and he could get an Oscar nomination.

Jack Black increases his buzz for the little seen movie Bernie (another Matthew MConaughey movie) with a Best Male Lead nomination.  The movie is now streaming on Netflix and as more people see it he could get an Oscar nomination.

Amour seems like a lock for Best Foreign Film after it’s nomination. 

A few of my favorite movies that got some love were Safety Not Guaranteed, Sound of My Voice, and Compliance.  Although I think Compliance should have got more than just a Best Supporting Female (Ann Dowd) nomination as it is one of my favorite movies of the year.  I would love it if Dowd could get an Oscar nomination for the role but I doubt that will happen. 

Here is a list of the nominees.  Let me know your thoughts. 

Best Feature
“Moonrise Kingdom”
“Silver Linings Playbook”
“Beasts of the Southern Wild”
“Keep the Lights On”

Best Director
Wes Anderson – “Moonrise Kingdom”
Julia Loktev – “The Loneliest Planet”
David O. Russell – “Silver Linings Playbook”
Ira Sachs – “Keep the Lights On”
Benh Zeitlin – “Beasts of the Southern Wild”

Best Female Lead
Linda Cardellini – “Return”
Emayatzy Corinealdi – “Middle of Nowhere”
Jennifer Lawrence – “Silver Linings Playbook”
Quvenzhan√© Wallis – “Beasts of the Southern Wild”
Mary Elizabeth Winstead – “Smashed”

Best Male Lead
Jack Black – “Bernie
Bradley Cooper – “Silver Linings Playbook”
John Hawkes – “The Sessions”
Thure Lindhardt – “Keep the Lights On”
Matthew McConaughey – “Killer Joe”
Wendell Pierce – “Four”

Best Supporting Male
Matthew McConaughey – “Magic Mike”
David Oyelowo – “Middle of Nowhere”
Michael Pena – “End of Watch”
Sam Rockwell – “Seven Psychopaths”
Bruce Willis – “Moonrise Kingdom”

Best Supporting Female
Rosemarie DeWitt – “Your Sister’s Sister”
Ann Dowd – “Compliance”
Helen Hunt – “The Sessions”
Brit Marling – “Sound of My Voice”
Lorraine Toussaint – “Middle of Nowhere”

Best First Feature
“Fill the Void” – Rama Burshtein
“Gimme the Loot” – Adam Leon
“Safety Not Guaranteed” – Colin Trevorrow
“Sound of My Voice” – Zal Batmanglij
“The Perks of Being a Wallflower” – Stephen Chbosky

Best International Film
“Amour” (France)
“Once Upon a Time in Anatolia” (Turkey)
“Rust and Bone” (France/Belgium)
“Sister” (Switzerland)
“War Witch” (Democratic Republic of Congo)

Best Documentary
“How to Survive a Plague”
“Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present”
“The Central park Five”
“The Invisible War”
“The Waiting Room”

Best Cinematography
Yoni Brook – “Valley of Saints”
Lol Crawley – “Here”
Ben Richardson – “Beasts of the Southern Wild”
Roman Vasyanov – “End of Watch”
Robert Yeoman – “Moonrise Kingdom”

Best Screenplay
Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola – “Moonrise Kingdom”
Zoe Kazan – “Ruby Sparks”
Martin McDonagh – “Seven Psychopaths”
David O. Russell – “Silver Linings Playbook”
Ira Sachs and Mauricio Zacharias – “Keep the Lights On”

Best First Screenplay
Rama Burshtein – “Fill the Void”
Derek Connolly – “Safety Not Guaranteed”
Nicholas Jarecki – “Arbitrage”
Rashida Jones and Will McCormack – “Celeste and Jesse Forever”
Jonathan Lisecki – “Gayby”

Someone to Watch Award
David Fenster – “Pincus”
Adam Leon – “Gimme the Loot”
Rebecca Thomas – “Electrick Children”

John Cassavetes Award
“Breakfast with Curtis”
“Middle of Nowhere”
“Mosquita y Mari”
“The Color Wheel”

Robert Altman Award


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