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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

20th Gotham Independent Film Awards Winners


This is my first time I see this awards ceremony live and it was a different experience. First believe it or not was entertaining even when was kind of odd that presenters and hosts had to read a written script as they had no prompters. Still the fun part was evidently when they got out of the script.

This year nominations had the particularity of having films directed by women and in the ceremony introduction co host Patricia Clarkson read all the fantastic statistics and mentioned that at least indie cinema was no longer a “boys club”. Maybe is true for nomination honors but when it comes to wining still seems like a boys club; nevertheless this year with Debra Granik’s Winter’s Bone leading the awards you could dream that women are really leaving a strong mark in the American filmmaking industry.

Show was so informal that made it quite fun to watch; to have an idea imagine the Golden Globes award ceremony a lot more free and you’ll get an idea of how this show was including that as the night advanced dinner was consumed but seemed that alcohol was consumed more, so hosts, presenters and honorees became more crazy to watch. There were lots of tributes, Hilary Swank, DarenAronofsky, Robert Duvall and James Schamus. Professor Schamus was long but quite fun to see how he related Prostitution and Porn film making with Hollywood and Independent cinema; gosh he was so right with his comparison.

The ceremony was by invitation only and the streaming opened the door to many that watched online what has been mostly a close, private event. The magic of Internet gives the possibility to go inside those still small indie circles and I just wish that many more awards shows in the world will follow this example and there are many of us that will like to watch live the ceremonies, as the excitement you feel when watching live is well-above just reading a press release.

I enjoyed the ceremony freedom, informality, the out-of-the-script moments, and most of all the clips to so many films that are truly quite hard to see trailers much more films. I even got interested in watching two documentaries but I’m still waiting to find access to much awaited by me, Waste Land; so imagine how hard will be to watch indie documentaries. Also was impressed by the many indie films with actors that are very well-known, including some that surely their non-indie film will surely be honored at Oscar. Interesting that indie producers are having access to well-known actors.

Hope next year I have again the opportunity to watch this ceremony that hope will be co hosted by great actors like Patricia Clarkson and Stanley Tucci.

Here are the award winners.

Best Feature: Winter’s Bone, Debra Granik
Breakthrough Director: Kevin Asch for Holy Rollers
Best Ensemble Performance: Winter’s Bone, Debra Granik
Breakthrough Actor: Ronald Bronstein in Daddy Longlegs
Best Documentary: The Oath, Laura Poitras
Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You: Littlerock, Mike Ott

Festival Genius Audience Award: Waiting for Superman, Davis Guggenheim

As you can notice Winter’s Bone was the film with most awards and can deny that I was surprised with Jennifer Lawrence NOT winning the actor award; but then she was indirectly recognized in the ensemble performance award. In about two hours we will learn the Spirit nominations and I’m sure Granik’s film will get several nominations, but I’m also still sure that film will make it to the Oscar and Lawrence will get a nod.

Can help but to be glad that one film I didn't enjoyed got no awards; for me this little fact gives awards credibility as film has BIG actors and a known indie honored director.  Yes I'm talking about Lisa Cholodenko's The Kids are All Right.

That’s it for the first awards of the 2010 season.

Cheers!!!

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