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“Manchester by the Sea” and “Moonlight” headline the Spirit Award nominations

film independent spirit awards 600x118
Just a few minutes ago, the nominations for the Independent Spirit Awards were announced. Their announcement is always one of the seminal moments in the precursor season. Of course, not all the contenders are eligible, with Oscar frontrunner La La Land notably not hitting the budget restriction. Other films not eligible included Nocturnal Animals, though most of the contenders you think were too expensive just were too expensive. That still left a ton of hopefuls, many of whom did show up in one place or another this morning/afternoon (depending on your location). You’ll see more below, but it seems like we have a Manchester by the Sea vs Moonlight battle ahead of us with the Spirit Awards, as both did as well as expected with the nominations.

Leading the field was actually Andrea Arnold’s American Honey as well as Barry Jenkins’ aforementioned Moonlight. Each received six citations. Close being the half dozen both of those flicks hauled in was Kenneth Lonergan’s Manchester by the Sea at five. All three will compete in Best Feature with Pablo Larrain’s Jackie (four nominations) as well as surprise inclusion Chronic, from Michael Franco (two nominations). The Lead categories have a host of Academy Award hopefuls, as expected, though the Supporting ones almost fully excluded presumed contenders, which is interesting. The end result is still likely to be a split overall between Manchester by the Sea and Moonlight, though don’t be surprised if Mike Mills’ 20th Century Women (two nominations) pulls out a win, or even David Mackenzie’s Hell or High Water (three nominations). Same goes for the previously mentioned American Honey and Jackie. We shall see…

Casey Affleck  with kidManchester by the Sea
Here now are full nominations for the Independent Spirit Awards:

Best Feature

American Honey
Manchester by the Sea

Best Director

Andrea Arnold for American Honey
Barry Jenkins for Moonlight
Pablo Larrain for Jackie
Jeff Nichols for Loving
Kelly Reichart for Certain Women

Best First Feature

The Childhood of a Leader
The Fits
Other People
Swiss Army Man
The Witch

Best Male Lead

Casey Affleck for Manchester by the Sea
David Harewood for Free in Deed
Viggo Mortensen for Captain Fantastic
Jesse Plemons for Other People
Tim Roth for Chronic

Best Female Lead

Annette Bening for 20th Century Women
Isabelle Huppert for Elle
Sasha Lane for American Honey
Ruth Negga for Loving
Natalie Portman for Jackie

Best Supporting Male

Ralph Fiennes for A Bigger Splash
Ben Foster for Hell or High Water
Lucas Hedges for Manchester by the Sea
Shia LaBeouf for American Honey
Craig Robinson for Morris from America

Best Supporting Female

Edwina Findley for Free in Deed
Paulina Garcia for Little Men
Lily Gladstone for Certain Women
Riley Keough for American Honey
Molly Shannon for Other People

Best Screenplay

Manchester by the Sea
20th Century Women
Little Men
Hell or High Water

Best First Screenplay

The Witch
Other People
Jean of the Joneses

Best International Film

My Golden Days
Toni Erdmann
Under the Shadow

Best Documentary Feature

I Am Not Your Negro
O.J.: Made in America
Under the Sun

Best Cinematography

Free in Deed
Eyes of My Mother
American Honey

Best Editing

Swiss Army Man
Manchester by the Sea
Hell or High Water

John Cassavetes Award

Free in Deed
Hunter Gatherer
Spa Night

20th Annual Piaget Producers Award

Lisa Kjerulff
Jordana Mollick
Melody C. Roscher & Craig Shilowich

23rd Annual Kiehl’s Someone to Watch Award

Andrew Ahn for Spa Night
Claire Carré for Embers
Anna Rose Holmer for The Fits
Ingrid Jungermann for Women Who Kill

22nd True Than Fiction Award

Kristi Jacobson for Solitary
Sara Jordenö for Kiki
Nanfu Wang for Hooligan Sparrow

Robert Altman Award


Stay tuned to see who takes home prizes when the Independent Spirit Awards officially goes down on February 25th!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He contributes to several other film-related websites and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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