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12 Years a Slave Tops 2014 Independent Spirit Awards Nominations

12 Years a Slave

This afternoon, Film Independent announced their nominees for the 2014 Independent Spirit Awards in Los Angeles, California. Designed as an opportunity to recognize the niche films that are muscled out of the circuit by Hollywood headliners, the show has in recent years become increasingly Academy friendly. Though 12 Years a Slave unsurprisingly leads the pack with seven nominations, it’s nice to see a handful of wild cards getting their due.

A couple of notable deviations: the ISA’s first award for Best Editing — perhaps my favorite category, with essential nominations for Upstream Color and Museum Hours — and six, instead of the usual five, nominees for Best Male Lead. I’m increasingly concerned that Greta Gerwig has brought personal injury to some corners of the industry after Frances Ha, one of the most lauded independent pictures of the year, was blackballed at the Gothams and severely underperformed here on what should have been her home turf. Yet if she’s to lose out to anyone, you can do a whole lot worse than ’90s treasure Gaby Hoffman. I’m also pleasantly surprised by the Best Cinematography nod for the bygone handiwork of Computer Chess‘s Matthias Grunsky.

The Spirit Awards are set to air March 1, 2014, and you can check out the full list of nominees below.

Best Feature
12 Years a Slave
All is Lost
Frances Ha
Inside Llewyn Davis

Best Director
Shane Carruth, Upstream Color
J.C. Chandor, All is Lost
Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave
Jeff Nichols, Mud
Alexander Payne, Nebraska

Best First Feature
Blue Caprice
Fruitvale Station
Una Noche

Best Male Lead
Bruce Dern, Nebraska
Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
Oscar Isaac, Inside Llewyn Davis
Michael B. Jordan, Fruitvale Station
Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club
Robert Redford, All is Lost

Best Female Lead
Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Julie Delpy, Before Midnight
Gaby Hoffman, Crystal Fairy
Brie Larson, Short Term 12
Shailene Woodley, The Spectacular Now

John Cassavetes Award
Computer Chess
Crystal Fairy
Museum Hours
Pit Stop
This Is Martin Bonner

Best Documentary Film
20 Feet From Stardom
After Tiller
Gideon’s Army
The Act of Killing
The Square

Best International Film
A Touch of Sin (China)
Blue is the Warmest Color (France)
Gloria (Chile)
The Great Beauty (Italy)
The Hunt (Denmark)

Best Editing
Shane Carruth and David Lowery, Upstream Color
Jem Cohen and Marc Vives, Museum Hours
Jennifer Lame, Frances Ha
Cindy Lee, Una Noche
Nat Sanders, Short Term 12

Best Cinematography
Sean Bobbitt, 12 Years a Slave
Benoit Debie, Spring Breakers
Bruno Delbonnel, Inside Llewyn Davis
Frank G. Demarco, All is Lost
Matthias Grunsky, Computer Chess

Best First Screenplay
Lake Bell, In a World
Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Don Jon
Bob Nelson, Nebraska
Jill Solloway, Afternoon Delight
Mike Starrbury, The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete

Best Screenplay
Woody Allen, Blue Jasmine
Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke & Richard Linklater, Before Midnight
Nicole Holofcener, Enough Said
Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber, The Spectacular Now
John Ridley, 12 Years a Slave

Best Supporting Actor
Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave
Will Forte, Nebraska
James Gandolfini, Enough Said
Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
Keith Stanfield, Short Term 12

Best Supporting Actress
Melonie Diaz, Fruitvale Station
Sally Hawkins, Blue Jasmine
Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave
Yolanda Ross, Go For Sisters
June Squibb, Nebraska

Piaget Producers Award ($25,000 grant to emerging producer)
Toby Halbrooks and James M. Johnston
Jacob Jaffke
Andrea Roa and Frederick Thornton

Someone to Watch Award
My Sister’s Quinceañera, Aaron Douglas Johnston
Newlyweeds, Shaka King
The Foxy Merkins, Madeline Olnek

Stella Artois Truer Than Fiction Award ($25,000 grant to an emerging non-fiction director)
Kalyanee Mam, A River Changes Course
Jason Osder, Let the Fire Burn
Stephanie Spray & Pacho Valez, Manakamana

Robert Altman Award
Writer/Director Jeff Nichols, Casting Director Francine Maisler, and the Cast of Mud

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