The Independent Spirit Awards Nominations Are No Longer Oscar Copycats

  • Indiewire
The Independent Spirit Awards Nominations Are No Longer Oscar Copycats
For years, the Film Independent Spirit Awards seemed content to parrot the Oscars as it awarded Best Feature to “The Artist,” “Moonlight,” “Spotlight,” “12 Years a Slave,” and “Birdman.” However, the 2020 nominees show the Spirit Awards’ 50-person nominating committee favoring the underdog, with A24 scoring a stunning cache of 18 nominations over seven films. According to Film Independent president Josh Welsh, 45% of the directing and writing Spirit nominees are women, and 30% are people of color.

The highest-profile Oscar contender nominated today was Netflix’s “Marriage Story.” By giving screenwriting (but not directing) nominee Noah Baumbach’s divorce drama the Robert Altman Ensemble Award, his high-wattage cast — Adam Driver, Scarlett Johansson, Laura Dern, Julie Hagerty, Alan Alda, and Ray Liotta — while “winners,” became ineligible for acting nominations and removed from the competitive fray. Thus, the movie boasts just three nominations.

Leading the pack were fall hit “The Lighthouse” and upcoming “Uncut Gems,
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