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Spirit Awards — The Best in Independent Films

posted by Nell Minow

I admit that the awards show I enjoy most each year is the “Spirit Awards,” and not just because I am lucky enough to get to vote for them.  They truly reflect their name in paying tribute to films that are made more for love than for money.  And they honor and support the small, the new, the passionate, and the struggle.  This year’s winners are:

Best Feature: Silver Linings Playbook (The Weinstein Company)
Producers: Bruce Cohen, Donna Gigliotti, Jonathan Gordon

Best Director: David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook (The Weinstein Company)

Best Screenplay: David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook (The Weinstein Company)

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Best First Feature: The Perks of Being a Wallflower (Summit Entertainment)
Writer/Director: Stephen Chbosky / Producers: Lianne Halfon, John Malkovich, Russell Smith

Best First Screenplay: Derek Connolly, Safety Not Guaranteed (FilmDistrict)

John Cassavetes Award (For best feature made under $500,000): Middle of Nowhere (AFFRM in partnership with Participant Media)
Writer/Director/Producer: Ava DuVernay / Producers: Howard Barish, Paul Garnes

Best Supporting Female: Helen Hunt, The Sessions (Fox Searchlight)

Best Supporting Male: Matthew McConaughey, Magic Mike (Warner Bros.Pictures)

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Best Female Lead: Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook (The Weinstein Company)

Best Male Lead: John Hawkes, The Sessions (Fox Searchlight)

Robert Altman Award: Starlet (Music Box Films)
Director: Sean Baker / Casting Director: Julia Kim / Ensemble Cast: Dree Hemingway, Besedka Johnson, Karren Karagulian, Stella Maeve, James Ransone

Best Cinematography: Ben Richardson, Beasts of the Southern Wild (Fox Searchlight)

Best International Film: Amour (France – Sony Pictures Classics) Director: Michael Haneke

Best Documentary: The Invisible War (Cinedigm Entertainment Group)
Director: Kirby Dick / Producers: Amy Ziering, Tanner King Barklow

Special Distinction: Harris Savides

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