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Spirit Awards 2011 predictions and Joel McHale comments

By Sean O’Connell

Hollywoodnews.com: The day before the annual Academy Awards ceremony belongs to the Spirit Awards, when Hollywood’s independent film community – which currently reflects the Oscar community thanks to double-dipping films like “Black Swan,” “Winter’s Bone” and “The Kids Are All Right” – takes to the sands in Santa Monica for what host Joel McHale calls “the coolest awards show, because it’s casual, in a tent on a beach, and people are drinking, and vomiting.”

Let’s hope there isn’t as much throw up as McHale predicts. We wouldn’t want 2011 Spirit Awards nominees Annette Bening, Nicole Kidman, Natalie Portman, James Franco, Ben Stiller or John C. Reilly slipping in someone else’s vomit on the way to the stage.

All kidding aside, the Spirit Awards are a laid-back affair, a lighter appetizer to the glamorous Oscars. The ceremony will be televised in IFC beginning at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT, with “Community” and “The Soup” star McHale hosting.

In a N.Y. Times interview, McHale promises “some ‘Dilemma’ jokes and ‘No Strings Attached’ jokes, a lot of ‘Transformer 2’ jokes.”

“The only goals I have that night, are a), hopefully the monologue will have some funny jokes that will keep people entertained and b), keep the show moving along,” McHale said.

And who would complain about that?

Here are the nominees for this year’s Spirit Awards, as well as our thoughts on who will win in each category (bolded).

Best Feature
127 Hours
Black Swan
Greenberg
The Kids Are All Right
Winter’s Bone

Best Director
Darren Aronofsky
Danny Boyle
Lisa Cholodenko
Debra Granik
John Cameron Mitchell

Best First Feature
Everything Strange and New
Get Low
The Last Exorcism
Night Catches Us
Tiny Furniture

John Cassavetes Award
Daddy Longlegs
The Exploding Girl
Lbs.
Lovers of Hate
Obselidia

Best Screenplay
Lisa Cholodenko, Stuart Blumberg
Debra Granik, Anne Rosellini
Nicole Holofcener
David Lindsay-Abaire
Todd Solondz

Best First Screenplay
Diane Bell
Lena Dunham
Nik Fackler
Robert Glaudini
Dana Adam Shapiro, Evan M. Wiener

Best Female Lead
Annette Bening
Greta Gerwig
Nicole Kidman
Jennifer Lawerence
Natalie Portman
Michelle Williams

Best Male Lead
Ronald Bronstein
Aaron Eckhart
James Franco
John C. Reilly
Ben Stiller

Best Supporting Female
Ashley Bell
Dale Dickey
Allison Janney
Daphne Rubin-Vega
Naomi Watts

Best Supporting Male
Bill Murray
John Hawkes
Samuel L. Jackson
John Ortiz
Mark Ruffalo

Best Foreign Film
The King’s Speech
Kisses
Mademoiselle Chambon
Of Gods And Men
Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives

Best Documentary
Exit Through The Gift Shop
Marwencol
Restrepo
Sweetgrass
Thunder Soul

Best Cinematography
Black Swan
Never Let Me Go
Tiny Furniture
Winter’s Bone
Greenberg

Robert Altman Award
Nicole Holofcener, Jeanne McCarthy, Ann Guilbert, Rebecca Hall, Catherine Keener, Amanda Peet, Oliver Platt, Lois Smith, Sarah Steele – Please Give

Piaget Producers Award
In-Ah Lee
Adele Romanski
Anish Savjani

Acura Someone to Watch Award
Mike Ott
Laurel Nakadate
Hossein Keshavarz

AVEENO Truer than Fiction Award
Ilisa Barbash, Lucien Castaing-Taylor
Jeff Malmberg
Lynn True, Nelson Walker

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