Monday

Kudos to the Festival Winners of Sundance

Congratulations to all of the Sundance Winners!!!

Some of these are films that we born in the "DIY spirit" - in terms of focusing on a story that moved the filmmakers, found friends and family to help them make it, and wound up being rewarded for their efforts.

"When the cost of filmmaking is as much as a pencil and a piece of paper, then we'll see true art."  Jean Cocteau

Here's an excellent clip talking to last year's filmmakers about their filmmaking process:




Sundance Winners: ‘The Miseducation of Cameron Post,’ ‘Kailash’ Take Top Honors

Gay conversion therapy drama takes top prize in what has widely been considered a quiet Sundance, as quality films failed to spark big sales.



The Sundance Film Festival wrapped with awards for “The Miseducation of Cameron Post,” director Desiree Akhavan’s accepting look at Christian teens wrestling with gay conversion therapy, and documentary winner “Kailash,” about a Nobel Prize winner’s crusade to end child slavery in his native India...

Other honorees in the U.S. Dramatic competition included Sara Colangelo for “The Kindergarten Teacher,” a remake of the Israeli drama that stars Maggie Gyllenhaal as a teacher who takes credit for one of her student’s creativity, and Christina Choe, who collected the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award for “Nancy.”

U.S. Dramatic special jury awards went to first feature “Monsters and Men,” “I Think We’re Alone Now” and actor Benjamin Dickey, star of “Blaze.” Director Andrew Heckler won the category’s audience prize for “Burden,” which stars Garrett Hedlund as a KKK member who experiences a change of heart.

The U.S. Documentary jury honored Alexandria Bombach with the directing prize for “On Her Shoulders,” a portrait of ISIS survivor Nadia Murad. The judges also announced four special jury awards: to “Crime + Punishment,” “Hale County This Morning, This Evening,” “Minding the Gap” and “Three Identical Strangers...”

The U.S. Documentary audience prize went to “The Sentence,” inspiring director Rudy Valdez to profess, “All my life, I felt like I didn’t have a voice. I felt like my community was under-served. I kept waiting for somebody to help us, [for] somebody to step up to the plate. … I decided I wasn’t going to wait any longer for somebody to give me a voice.”

In the World Cinema dramatic competition, the grand jury prize went to “Butterflies,” a family-centric drama from Turkish director Tolga Karaçelik (whose “Ivy” competed at Sundance three years ago), while Iceland’s Ísold Uggadóttir earned directing honors for “And Breathe Normally.” The audience prize went to “The Guilty.” Danish director Gustav Möller accepted the award, saying, “The idea of the film is that it would be created by the audience … so it’s very special to get the award from the audience.”

The World Cinema documentary grand jury prize went to “Of Fathers and Sons,” Talal Derki’s two-year portrait of the pressures facing children growing up in a radical Islamist family. Directing honors went to Sandi Tan for “Shirkers,” while the audience voted for “This Is Home,” about four Syrian refugee families adjusting to life in Baltimore.

Ethan Hawke presented the NEXT Audience Award to Aneesh Chaganty’s “Search.” The film, which takes place entirely on computer screens, stars John Cho as a father searching for clues to his missing daughter’s disappearance via social media.

The category’s new NEXT Innovator Award was selected by RuPaul, who — as the prize’s first-ever judge — confessed, “We have a tie. I fought long and hard with myself over this,” before presenting to both Jordana Spiro’s “Night Comes On” and Jeremiah Zagar’s “We the Animals.”

Earlier this week, Chaganty’s “Search” received the $20,000 Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film Prize, presented annually to a film that focuses on science or technology as a theme.

Also previously announced, “His House” director Remi Weekes won the Sundance Institute NHK Award; the Sundance Institute/Amazon Studios Producers Awards went to Katy Chevingy & Marilyn Ness (producers of “Dark Money”) and Sev Ohanian for “Search”; and Sundance Institute Open Borders Fellowship winners were Derki (“Of Fathers and Sons”), Chaitanya Tamhane (for her still-untitled feature) and Tatiana Huezo (“Night on Fire”).

U.S. DRAMATIC COMPETITION
Grand Jury Prize: “The Miseducation of Cameron Post”

Audience Award: “Burden”

Directing: Sara Colangelo, “The Kindergarten Teacher”

Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award: Christina Choe, “Nancy”

Special Jury Award for Outstanding First Feature: Reinaldo Marcus Green, “Monsters and Men”

Special Jury Award for Excellence in Filmmaking: “I Think We’re Alone Now”

Special Jury Award for Achievement in Acting: Benjamin Dickey, “Blaze”

U.S. DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION
Grand Jury Prize: “Kailash”

Directing: Alexandria Bombach, “On Her Shoulders”

Audience Award: “The Sentence”

Special Jury Award for Social Impact: “Crime + Punishment”

Special Jury Award for Creative Vision: “Hale County This Morning, This Evening”

Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Filmmaking: “Minding the Gap”

Special Jury Award for Storytelling: “Three Identical Strangers”

WORLD CINEMA DRAMATIC COMPETITION
Grand Jury Prize: “Butterflies”

Audience Award: “The Guilty”

Directing Award: Ísold Uggadóttir, “And Breathe Normally”

Special Jury Award for Acting: Valeria Bertucecelli, “The Queen of Fear,”

Special Jury Award for Screenwriting: Julio Chavezmontes & Sebastián Hofmann, “Time Share”

Special Jury Award for Ensemble Acting: “Dead Pigs”

WORLD CINEMA DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION
Grand Jury Prize: “Of Fathers and Sons”

Audience Award: “This Is Home”

Directing Award: Sandi Tan, “Shirkers”

Special Jury Award: Steven Loveridge, “Matangi/Maya/M.I.A.”

Special Jury Award for Cinematography: Maxim Arbugaev, Peter Indergand “Genesis 2.0”

Special Jury Award for Editing: Maxim Pozdorovkin & Matvey Kulakov, “Our New President”

OTHER AWARDS
NEXT Audience Award: “Search”

NEXT Innovator Award: “Night Comes On” AND “We the Animals”

Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film Prize: “Search”

Sundance Institute NHK Award: Remi Weekes, “His House”

Sundance Institute/Amazon Studios Producers Awards: Katy Chevingy & Marilyn Ness (“Dark Money”) AND Sev Ohanian (“Search”)


Sundance Open Borders Fellowship Presented by Netflix: Talal Derki (“Of Fathers and Sons”) AND Chaitanya Tamhane AND Tatiana Huezo (“Night on Fire”)

Tuesday

Congrats to the Indie Spirit Nominees!!!

Drumroll. And the 2018 Film Independent Spirit Award Nominees are…

The past couple months of entertainment news have not been the cheeriest, to say the least. But as the necessary work of righting longstanding injustices continues, the importance of elevating new and diverse voices inside the film industry remains. And while awards shows may seem like small potatoes in the face of larger global events, the fact remains: championing creative independence and supporting a diverse community of unique, innovative artists remains vitally important—sowing the seeds via pop culture of a better, more equitable future.
So! With that in mind, we’re honored to announce our nominees for the 2018 Film Independent Spirit Awards, unveiled this morning at The Jeremy hotel in West Hollywood by presenters Lily Collins (To the BoneOkjaRules Don’t Apply) and Tessa Thompson (Dear White PeopleCreedThor: Ragnarok). Once again, this year’s Spirit Award nominees represent a true uniqueness of vision and innovation in visual storytelling. They are:

BEST FEATURE


CALL ME BY YOUR NAME
PRODUCERS: Peter Spears, Luca Guadagnino, Emilie Georges, Rodgrigo Teixeira, Marco Morabito, James Ivory, Howard Rosenman
THE FLORIDA PROJECT
PRODUCERS: Sean Baker, Chris Bergoch, Kevin Chinoy, Andrew Duncan, Alex Saks, Francesca Silvestri, Shih-Ching Tsou
GET OUT
PRODUCERS: Jason Blum, Edward H. Hamm Jr., Sean McKittrick, Jordan Peele
LADY BIRD
PRODUCERS: Eli Bush, Evelyn O’Neill, Scott Rudin
THE RIDER
PRODUCERS: Mollye Asher, Bert Hamelinck, Sacha Harroche, Chloé Zhao
(Award given to the producer)

BEST FIRST FEATURE


COLUMBUS
DIRECTOR: Kogonada
PRODUCERS: Danielle Renfrew Behrens, Aaron Boyd, Giulia Caruso, Ki Jin Kim, Andrew Miano, Chris Weitz
INGRID GOES WEST
DIRECTOR: Matt Spicer
PRODUCERS: Jared Goldman, Adam Mirels, Robert Mirels, Aubrey Plaza, Tim White, Trevor White
MENASHE
DIRECTOR: Joshua Z. Weinstein
PRODUCERS: Yoni Brook, Traci Carlson, Daniel Finkelman, Alex Lipschultz
OH LUCY!
DIRECTOR: Atsuko Hirayanagi
PRODUCERS: Jessica Elbaum, Yukie Kito, Han West
PATTI CAKE$
DIRECTOR: Geremy Jasper
PRODUCERS: Chris Columbus, Michael Gottwald, Dan Janvey, Daniela Taplin Lundberg, Noah Stahl, Rodrigo Teixeira
(Award given to the producer and director)

BEST DIRECTOR


Sean Baker, The Florida Project
Jonas Carpignano, A Ciambra
Luca Guadagnino, Call Me by Your Name
Jordan Peele, Get Out
Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie, Good Time
Chloé Zhao, The Rider

BEST SCREENPLAY


Greta Gerwig, Lady Bird
Azazel Jacobs, The Lovers
Martin McDonagh, Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri
Jordan Peele, Get Out
Mike White, Beatriz at Dinner

BEST FIRST SCREENPLAY


Kris Avedisian, Kyle Espeleta (story by), Jesse Wakeman (story by)Donald Cried
Emily V. Gordon, Kumail Nanjiani, The Big Sick
Ingrid Jungermann, Women Who Kill
Kogonada, Columbus
David Smith, Matt Spicer, Ingrid Goes West

JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD


DAYVEON
WRITER/DIRECTOR/PRODUCER: Amman Abbasi
WRITER: Steven Reneau
PRODUCERS: Lachion Buckingham, Alexander Uhlmann
A GHOST STORY
WRITER/DIRECTOR: David Lowery
PRODUCERS: Adam Donaghey, Toby Halbrooks, James M. Johnston
LIFE AND NOTHING MORE
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Antonio Méndez Esparza
PRODUCERS: Amadeo Hernández Bueno, Alvaro Portanet Hernández, Pedro Hernández Santos
MOST BEAUTIFUL ISLAND
WRITER/DIRECTOR/PRODUCER: Ana Asensio
PRODUCERS: Larry Fessenden, Noah Greenberg, Chadd Harbold, Jenn Wexler
THE TRANSFIGURATION
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Michael O’Shea
PRODUCER: Susan Leber
(Award given to the best feature made for under $500,000; given to the writer, director and producer)

BEST MALE LEAD


Harris Dickinson, Beach Rats
Timothée Chalamet, Call Me by Your Name
Daniel Kaluuya, Get Out
Robert Pattinson, Good Time
James Franco, The Disaster Artist

BEST FEMALE LEAD


Salma Hayek, Beatriz at Dinner
Frances McDormand, Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri
Margot Robbie, I, Tonya
Saoirse Ronan, Lady Bird
Regina Williams, Life and Nothing More
Shinobu Terajima, Oh Lucy!

BEST SUPPORTING MALE


Nnamdi Asomugha, Crown Heights
Armie Hammer, Call Me by Your Name
Barry Keoghan, The Killing of a Sacred Deer
Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri
Benny Safdie, Good Time

BEST SUPPORTING FEMALE


Holly Hunter, The Big Sick
Allison Janney, I, Tonya
Laurie Metcalf, Lady Bird
Lois Smith, Marjorie Prime
Taliah Lennice Webster, Good Time

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY


Thimios Bakatakis, The Killing of a Sacred Deer
Elisha Christian, Columbus
Hélène Louvart, Beach Rats
Sayombhu Mukdeeprom, Call Me by Your Name
Joshua James Richards, The Rider

BEST EDITING


Ronald Bronstein, Benny Safdie, Good Time
Walter Fasano, Call Me by Your Name
Alex O’Flinn, The Rider
Gregory Plotkin, Get Out
Tatiana S. Riegel, I, Tonya

BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM


BPM (BEATS PER MINUTE) (France)
DIRECTOR: Robin Campillo
A FANTASTIC WOMAN (Chile)
DIRECTOR: Sebastián Lelio
I AM NOT A WITCH (UK)
DIRECTOR: Rungano Nyoni
LADY MACBETH (UK)
DIRECTOR: William Oldroyd
LOVELESS (Russia)
DIRECTOR: Andrey Zvyagintsev

BEST DOCUMENTARY


THE DEPARTURE
DIRECTOR/PRODUCER: Lana Wilson
FACES PLACES
DIRECTORS: Agnés Varda, JR
PRODUCER: Rosalie Varda
LAST MEN IN ALEPPO
DIRECTOR: Feras Fayyad
PRODUCERS: Kareem Abeed, Steen Jespersen, Stefan Kloos
MOTHERLAND
DIRECTOR/PRODUCER: Ramona S. Diaz
PRODUCER: Rey Cuerdo
QUEST
DIRECTOR: Jonathan Olshefski
PRODUCER: Sabrina Schmidt Gordon
(Award given to the director and producer)

ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD


MUDBOUND
DIRECTOR: Dee Rees
CASTING DIRECTORS: Billy Hopkins, Ashley Ingram
ENSEMBLE CAST: Jonathan Banks, Mary J. Blige, Jason Clarke, Garrett Hedlund, Jason Mitchell, Rob Morgan, Carey Mulligan
(Award given to one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast)

JEEP TRUER THAN FICTION AWARD

 

THE CAGE FIGHTER
DIRECTOR: Jeff Unay
DISTANT CONSTELLATION           
DIRECTOR: Shevaun Mizrahi
QUEST
DIRECTOR: Jonathan Olshefski
(The Truer Than Fiction Award, now in its 23rd year, is presented to an emerging director of non-fiction features who has not yet received significant recognition. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant sponsored by the Jeep brand.) 

KIEHL’s SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD


DAYVEON
DIRECTOR: Amman Abbasi
GOOK          
DIRECTOR: Justin Chon
SUPER DARK TIMES  
DIRECTOR: Kevin Phillips
(The Someone to Watch Award, now in its 24th year, recognizes a talented filmmaker of singular vision who has not yet received appropriate recognition. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant sponsored by Kiehl’s Since 1851.)

PIAGET PRODUCERS AWARD

          

Giulia Caruso & Ki Jin Kim
Ben LeClair
Summer Shelton
(The Producers Award, now in its 21st year, honors emerging producers who, despite highly limited resources demonstrate the creativity, tenacity and vision required to produce quality, independent films. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant sponsored by Piaget.)

AMERICAN AIRLINES BONNIE AWARD

               

So Yong Kim
Lynn Shelton
Chloé Zhao
(Bonnie Tiburzi Caputo joined American Airlines in 1973 at age 24, becoming the first female pilot to fly for a major U.S. airline. In her honor, the inaugural Bonnie Award will recognize a mid-career female director with a $50,000 unrestricted grant, sponsored by American Airlines.)

But before you start filling out your awards ballot and planning your March 3 viewing party, it’s time for you to help determine this year’s winners.
Members of Film Independent who join by December 7 will enjoy all that our awards-season Membership privileges have to offer, including screeners of select nominated films and access to free theatrical screenings of ALL nominated films in Los Angeles (and don’t worry if you miss the December deadline—screenings and voting are open to all new Members joining before January 19.) Click here for more info. And for information on how to actually attend the Spirit Awards, click here.
The 2018 Film Independent Spirit Awards happen Saturday, March 3 on the beach in Santa Monica and will be broadcast live on IFC at 2p/5e with returning hosts Nick Kroll and John Mulaney.