Birdman, Boyhood and Selma Top the 30th Annual Independent Spirit Nominations


file_123921_0_birdmanreviewEarlier today, Film Independent announced the nominations for the 30th Annual Spirit Awards, which will be announced on February 21, 2015 in a live ceremony from Santa Monica, airing on IFC at 2pm Pacific and 5pm Eastern. 

Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu’s Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) received the most nominations with six, followed by Richard Linklater’s Boyhood, Ava Duvernay’s Selma and Dan Gilroy’s Nightcrawler with 5 each. Damien Chazelle’s Sundance award-winning Whiplash received 4 nominations, as did another Sundance favorite, Ira Sachs’ Love is Strange

All of the above other than Nightcrawler made up the nominees for Best Feature and only four of the above (Gonzalez, Linklater, Duvernay and Chazelle) were nominated in the Best Director category, joined by Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter director David Zellner. (Gilroy was nominated in the Best First Feature category instead.)

One of the surprise omissions in the acting categories was Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher, which may have been made for more than the budget level considered for the Spirit Awards, but instead, it’s receiving a “Special Distinction Award.” Likewise, Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice will receive the Robert Altman Award, which is given to Anderson and the film’s entire cast.

While Julianne Moore, who is thought to be receiving an Oscar nomination this year for her performance in Still Alice, was nominated in the Best Female Lead category, Reese Witherspoon wasn’t nominated for Wild. Instead, Moore was joined by Marion Cotillard (The Immigrant), Rinko Kikuchi (Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter), Jenny Slate (Obvious Child) and Tilda Swinton (Only Lovers Left Alive).

Michael Keaton and Jake Gyllenhaal were nominated in the Best Male Lead category for Birdman and Nightcrawler, respectively, joined by David Oyelowo for Selma, John Lithgow for Love is Strange (over his co-star Alfred Molina) and Andre Benjamin for Jimi: All Is By My Side.

 J.C. Chandor’s A Most Violent Year was nominated for its screenplay, its editing, as well as Jessica Chastain’s supporting role. 

You can see the full list of nominations below. For more information, you can visit



(Award given to the Producer. Executive Producers are not awarded.)

             Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

            Producers: Alejandro G. Iñárritu, John Lesher, Arnon Milchan, James W.   Skotchdopole


            Producers: Richard Linklater, Jonathan Sehring, John Sloss, Cathleen Sutherland

            Love is Strange

            Producers: Lucas Joaquin, Lars Knudsen, Ira Sachs, Jayne Baron Sherman, Jay Van Hoy


            Producers: Christian Colson, Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, Oprah Winfrey


            Producers: Jason Blum, Helen Estabrook, David Lancaster, Michael Litvak



            Damien Chazelle


             Ava DuVernay


           Alejandro G. Iñárritu

            Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

            Richard Linklater


            David Zellner

            Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter



            Scott Alexander & Larry Karaszewski

            Big Eyes

            J.C. Chandor

            A Most Violent Year

             Dan Gilroy


            Jim Jarmusch

            Only Lovers Left Alive

Ira Sachs & Mauricio Zacharias

            Love is Strange


BEST FIRST FEATURE (Award given to the director and producer) 

            A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night

            Director: Ana Lily Amirpour

            Producers: Justin Begnaud, Sina Sayyah

            Dear White People

            Director/Producer: Justin Simien

            Producers: Effie T. Brown, Ann Le, Julia Lebedev, Angel Lopez, Lena Waithe


            Director: Dan Gilroy

            Producers: Jennifer Fox, Tony Gilroy, Jake Gyllenhaal, David Lancaster,   Michel Litvak

            Obvious Child

            Director: Gillian Robespierre

            Producer: Elisabeth Holm

            She’s Lost Control

            Director/Producer: Anja Marquardt

            Producers: Mollye Asher, Kiara C. Jones



            Desiree Akhavan

            Appropriate Behavior

            Sara Colangelo

            Little Accidents 

            Justin Lader

            The One I Love

            Anja Marquardt

            She’s Lost Control

            Justin Simien         

            Dear White People


JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD – Given to the best feature made for under $500,000.  Award given to the writer, director and producer.  Executive Producers are not awarded.

            Blue Ruin

            Writer/Director: Jeremy Saulnier

            Producers:  Richard Peete, Vincent Savino, Anish Savjani

            It Felt Like Love

            Writer/Director/Producer: Eliza Hittman

            Producers: Shrihari Sathe, Laura Wagner

             Land Ho!

            Writers/Directors: Aaron Katz & Martha Stephens

            Producers: Christina Jennings, Mynette Louie, Sara Murphy

            Man From Reno

            Writer/Director: Dave Boyle

            Writers: Joel Clark, Michael Lerman

            Producer: Ko Mori


            Writer/Director/Producer: Chris Mason Johnson

            Producer: Chris Martin



            Marion Cotillard

            The Immigrant

             Rinko Kikuchi

            Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter

            Julianne Moore

            Still Alice

            Jenny Slate

            Obvious Child 

            Tilda Swinton

            Only Lovers Left Alive



            André Benjamin

            Jimi: All Is By My Side

            Jake Gyllenhaal


            Michael Keaton

            Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

             John Lithgow

            Love is Strange

             David Oyelowo




             Patricia Arquette


             Jessica Chastain

            A Most Violent Year

            Carmen Ejogo


            Andrea Suarez Paz

           Stand Clear of the Closing Doors

            Emma Stone

            Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)



             Riz Ahmed


            Ethan Hawke


            Alfred Molina

            Love is Strange

            Edward Norton

            Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

            J.K. Simmons




             Darius Khondji

            The Immigrant

            Emmanuel Lubezki           

            Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

            Sean Porter

            It Felt Like Love

            Lyle Vincent

            A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night

            Bradford Young



BEST EDITING                  

             Sandra Adair          


            Tom Cross  


            John Gilroy 


             Ron Patane 

            A Most Violent Year

            Adam Wingard       

            The Guest


BEST DOCUMENTARY (Award given to the director and producer)

             20,000 Days on Earth

            Directors: Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard

            Producers: Dan Bowen, James Wilson  


            Director/Producer: Laura Poitras  

            Producers: Mathilde Bonnefoy, Dirk Wilutzky   

            Stray Dog

            Director: Debra Granik       

            Producer: Anne Rosellini  

            The Salt of the Earth

            Directors: Juliano Ribeiro Salgado and Wim Wenders           

            Producer: David Rosier


            Director/Producer: Orlando von Einsiedel

            Producer: Joanna Natasegara


BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM (Award given to the director)

            Force Majeure


            Director: Ruben Östlund    



            Director: Pawel Pawlikowski         



            Director: Andrey Zvyagintsev



            Director: Xavier Dolan        

            Norte, the End of History


            Director: Lav Diaz   

            Under the Skin

            (United Kingdom)

            Director: Jonathan Glazer 


ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD – (Given to one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast)

Inherent Vice

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson

Casting Director: Cassandra Kulukundis

Ensemble Cast: Josh Brolin, Martin Donovan, Jena Malone, Joanna Newsom, Joaquin Phoenix, Eric Roberts, Maya Rudolph, Martin Short Serena Scott Thomas, Benicio Del Toro, Katherine Waterston, Michael Kenneth Williams, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon



            Director/Producer: Bennett Miller 

            Producers: Anthony Bregman, Megan Ellison, Jon Kilik        

            Writers: E. Max Frye, Dan Futterman

            Actors: Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo, Channing Tatum  

18th ANNUAL PIAGET PRODUCERS AWARD – The 18th annual Producers Award, sponsored by Piaget, 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 funded by Piaget.


            Chad Burris

            Elisabeth Holm

            Chris Ohlson


21st ANNUAL KIEHL’S SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD – The 21st annual Someone to Watch Award, sponsored by Kiehl’s Since 1851, recognizes a talented filmmaker of singular vision who has not yet received appropriate recognition.  The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by Kiehl’s Since 1851.


            A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night

            Director: Ana Lily Amirpour


            Directors: Rania Attieh & Daniel Garcia 


            The Retrieval

            Director: Chris Eska           


 20th ANNUAL LENSCRAFTERS TRUER THAN FICTION AWARD – The 20th annual Truer Than Fiction Award, sponsored by LensCrafters 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 funded by LensCrafters.

            Approaching the Elephant

            Director: Amanda Rose Wilder     

            Evolution of a Criminal

            Director: Darius Clark Monroe      

             The Kill Team

            Director: Dan Krauss          

            The Last Season

            Director: Sara Dosa

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