While summer may be the season when moviegoers can look forward to their most anticipated blockbusters, it is awards season that many cinephiles look forward to most. For the next several months, some of the year’s most critically acclaimed films will be released in theaters all vying for some of the industry’s most coveted awards. While the Academy Awards, Golden Globes, and Screen Actors Guild Awards may be those that come to mind first, there are, frankly, dozens of high profile award ceremonies that will be handing out the hardware this season. But when it comes to independent filmmakers, the Independent Spirit Awards rank among the top ceremonies.

According to Film Independent, the Independent Spirit Awards stand for “championing creative independence in visual storytelling” and “supporting a community of artists who embody diversity, innovation and uniqueness of vision.” For fans of both awards ceremonies and films in general, the Spirit Award nominees give early insight into which films may be up for some of the higher profile awards this season.

For instance, four out of the last six Best Features at the Spirit Awards have gone on to win the corresponding Best Picture Oscar. And in five out of the last six years, multiple Best Feature nominees at the Spirit Awards received the same nomination at the Oscars. So, while the two ceremonies are traditionally held just a few days apart, the Spirit Award nominees, which always come early, do give us some insight into what will happen at the other ceremonies.

Most importantly, the Independent Spirit Awards present a platform for rewarding independent filmmakers, who strive to tell thought-provoking stories in new ways, without succumbing to the temptation of big-budgets and blockbuster fare. And now, as the 2017 Independent Spirit Award nominees have been announced, please take a moment and check out all the nominees below:

 Moonlight, Jackie & More Lead 2017 Independent Spirit Award Nominees

Jackie – nominated for Best Feature, Best Director, Best Female Lead, and more.

BEST FEATURE – 
MoonlightJackieManchester by the Sea, American Honey, Chronic


BEST DIRECTOR – 

Andrea Arnold – American Honey, Barry Jenkins – Moonlight, Pablo Larrain – Jackie, Jeff Nichols – Loving, Kelly Reichardt – Certain Women


BEST FEMALE LEAD – 

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


BEST MALE LEAD – 

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


BEST SUPPORTING FEMALE – 

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

manchester by sea kyle chandler casey affleck Moonlight, Jackie & More Lead 2017 Independent Spirit Award Nominees

Manchester by the Sea – nominated for Best Feature, Best Male Lead, Best Supporting Male, Best Screenplay, and more.


BEST SUPPORTING MALE – 

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


BEST FIRST FEATURE – 
Swiss Army Man, The Childhood of a Leader, The Fits, Other People, The Witch


BEST SCREENPLAY – 

Barry Jenkins – Moonlight, Kenneth Lonergan – Manchester by the Sea, Mike Mills – 20th Century Women, Ira Sachs & Mauricio Zacharias – Little Men, Taylor SheridanHell or High Water


BEST FIRST SCREENPLAY – 

Robert Eggers – The Witch, Chris Kelly – Other People, Adam Mansbach – Barry, Stella Meghie – Jean of the Joneses, Craig Shilowich – Christine


BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY – 

Ava Berkofsky – Free In Deed, Lol Crawley – The Childhood of a Leader, Zach Kuperstein – The Eyes of My Mother, James Laxton – Moonlight, Robbie Ryan – American Honey


BEST EDITING – 

Matthew Hannam – Swiss Army Man, Jennifer Lame – Manchester by the Sea, Joi McMillon & Nat Sanders – Moonlight, Jake Roberts – Hell or High Water, Sebastián Sepúlveda – Jackie

hell or high water movie reviews Moonlight, Jackie & More Lead 2017 Independent Spirit Award Nominees

Hell or High Water – nominated for Best Supporting Male, Best Screenplay, and Best Editing.


BEST DOCUMENTARY – 

The 13th, Cameraperson, I Am Not Your Negro, O.J.: Made in America, Sonita, Under the Sun


BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM – 

Aquarius (Brazil), Chevalier (Greece), My Golden Days (France), Toni Erdmann (Germany and Romania), Under the Shadow (Iran and U.K.)


ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD (Best Ensemble) – 

Moonlight


JOHN CASSAVETTES AWARD (Best Feature Made For Under $5,000) – 

Free In Deed, Hunter Gatherer, Lovesong, Nakom, Spa Night


KIEHL’S SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD – 

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

The 32nd Independent Spirit Awards is scheduled to take place on February 25th, 2017.

Source: Film Independent

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