Film Independent Spirit Awards 2016 Announced

Film Independent Spirit Awards
Idris Elba after winning at the Film Independent Spirit Awards. Photo courtesy of Film Independent

 Los Angeles, CA –Nonprofit arts organization, Film Independent produces the most important award ceremonies for the Independent Film genre which includes the Spirt Awards, the LA Film Festival, and Film Independent at LACMA.  At the 31st annual Film Independent Spirit Awards, Spotlight, Beasts of No Nation, and Room received the highest honors while Carol, The Diary of a Teenage Girl, Krisha, The Look of Silence, Son of Saul, and Tangerine also received honorable recognition at the ceremony.

The Spirit Awards honor more than just actors and directors, but celebrates artistic films that endow diversity, create original developments, and revolutionize a point of view. The Spirit Awards is also a major fundraiser for Film Independent’s year-round programs.

Zimbabwean filmmaker Sue-Ellen Chitunya was a recipient of the 2016 Roger and Chaz Ebert Foundation Fellowship which included a grant of $10,000 award. The annual award is specifically given to filmmakers who currently participate in a Film Independent Artist Development program; with diversity as the assignment.

Congratulations to the 2016 winners below: 

Best Feature: Spotlight (Open Road Films)

Producers: Blye Pagon Faust, Steve Golin, Nicole Rocklin, Michael Sugar

Best Director: Tom McCarthy, Spotlight (Open Road Films)

Best Screenplay: Tom McCarthy, Josh Singer, Spotlight (Open Road Films)

Best First Feature: The Diary of a Teenage Girl (Sony Pictures Classics)

Director: Marielle Heller                Producers: Miranda Bailey, Anne Carey, Bert Hamelinck, Madeline Samit

Best First Screenplay: Emma Donoghue, Room (A24)

John Cassavetes Award (For best feature made under $500,000): Krisha (A24)

Writer/Director/Producer: Trey Edward Shults   Producers: Justin R. Chan, Chase Joliet, Wilson Smith


Best Supporting Female: Mya Taylor,Tangerine (Magnolia Pictures)


Best Supporting Male: Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation (Bleecker Street/Netflix)

Best Female Lead: Brie Larson, Room (A24)

Best Male Lead: Abraham Attah, Beasts of No Nation (Bleecker Street/Netflix)

Robert Altman Award: Spotlight (Open Road Films)

Director: Tom McCarthy

Casting Directors: Kerry Barden, Paul Schnee

Ensemble Cast: Billy Crudup, Michael Cyril Creighton, Paul Guilfoyle, Neal Huff, Brian d’Arcy James, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Mark Ruffalo, Liev Schreiber, Jamey Sheridan, John Slattery, Stanley Tucci

Best Cinematography: Ed Lachman, Carol (The Weinstein Company)

Best Editing: Tom McArdle, Spotlight (Open Road Films)

Best International Film: Son of Saul (Hungary – Sony Pictures Classics)

Director: László Nemes

Best Documentary: The Look of Silence (Drafthouse Films/Participant Media)

Director: Joshua Oppenheimer

Producer: Signe Byrge Sørensen

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