The Film Independent Spirit Awards, which typically highlight non-blockbuster cinema, announced nominees on Tuesday. As usual, they include many films that are also on the path to the Academy Awards. The hopefuls for best feature include “12 Years a Slave,” “All Is Lost,” “Nebraska,” “Inside Llewyn Davis” and “Frances Ha.”
The directors of the first three films — Steve McQueen, J.C. Chandor and Alexander Payne — were also nominated for best director, alongside Jeff Nichols for “Mud” and Shane Carruth for “Upstream Color.” Mr. Nichols will definitely take home the Robert Altman Award, for the ensemble cast of his drama, a coming-of-age tale set in Arkansas.
The performance categories also included a mix of marquee and lesser-known names: for best actor, Robert Redford (“All Is Lost”) will compete against Bruce Dern (“Nebraska”), Chiwetel Ejiofor (“12 Years a Slave”), Oscar Isaac (“Inside Llewyn Davis”), Michael B. Jordan (“Fruitvale Station,” also nominated for best first feature) and Matthew McConaughey (“Dallas Buyers Club”).
Among actresses, Cate Blanchett, considered an Oscar front-runner for “Blue Jasmine,” will vie for the trophy against Julie Delpy (“Before Midnight,” which also earned a best-screenplay nod), Brie Larson (“Short Term 12”), Shailene Woodley (“The Spectacular Now,” another screenplay contender), and Gaby Hoffmann (“Crystal Fairy,” also a contender for the John Cassavetes Award, for films made for under $500,000).
With seven nominations over all, Mr. McQueen’s epic drama “12 Years a Slave” leads the pack, followed closely by Mr. Payne’s slice-of-life “Nebraska,” with six.
The documentary hopefuls are “20 Feet From Stardom,” about back-up singers; “After Tiller,” which focuses on doctors who provide late-term abortions; “Gideon’s Army,” about public defenders in the South; “The Square,” following the Cairo uprising in Tahrir Square; and “The Act of Killing,” about Indonesian death squads.
The full list of nominees is available here. The awards will be handed out on March 1, the day before the Oscars, in a televised ceremony hosted by the comedian and actor Patton Oswalt.
Courtesy of Melena Ryzik