SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK was the big winner at this year’s Independent Spirit Awards.
The film took home four major awards, including: Best Feature, Best Director (David O. Russell), Best Screenplay (Russell) and Best Female Lead (Jennifer Lawrence).
The film has earned a lot of praise (and rightfully so, I might add). However, the decision is not without some controversy. The films chosen to compete for the Independent Spirit Awards typically have a cap on their budget, maxing out at $20 million. Organizers have the right to allow exceptions to this rule if they feel the film’s merits outweigh the numbers. SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK is budgeted at $21 million.
Especially feeling burned are the people who were pulling for the more modestly budgeted BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD. That film did win an award for Best Cinematography (Ben Richardson).
THE SESSIONS picked up a couple of acting awards. John Hawkes won for Best Male Lead while Helen Hunt took home the award for Best Supporting Female. The Best Supporting Male award went to Matthew McConaughey for MAGIC MIKE.
Stephen Chbosky took home the award for Best First Feature for THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER (YES!). Similarly, Derek Connolly won the Best First Screenplay award for SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED.
Here is a full run-down of the winners:
BEST FEATURE: SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK – Producers: Bruce Cohen, Donna Gigliotti, Jonathan Gordon
BEST DIRECTOR: David O. Russell – SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK
BEST MALE LEAD: John Hawkes – THE SESSIONS
BEST FEMALE LEAD: Jennifer Lawrence – SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK
BEST SUPPORTING MALE: Matthew McConaughey – MAGIC MIKE
BEST SUPPORTING FEMALE: Helen Hunt – THE SESSIONS
BEST SCREENPLAY: David O. Russell – SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK
BEST FIRST FEATURE: THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER – Director: Stephen Chbosky; Producers: Lianne Halfon, John Malkovich, Russell Smith
BEST FIRST SCREENPLAY: Derek Connolly – SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: Ben Richardson – BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD
BEST DOCUMENTARY: THE INVISIBLE WAR – Director: Kirby Dick; Producers: Tanner King Barklow, Amy Ziering
BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM: AMOUR – Director: Michael Haneke
JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD: MIDDLE OF NOWHERE – Writer/Director/Producer: Ava DuVernay; Producers: Howard Barish, Paul Garnes
PIAGET PRODUCER’S AWARD: STORIES OF THE SUN – Producer: Mynette Louie
SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD: GIMME THE LOOT – Director: Adam Leon
TRUER THAN FICTION AWARD: THE WAITING ROOM – Director: Peter Nicks
ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD: STARLET – Director: Sean Baker; Casting Director: Julia Kim; Ensemble Cast: Dree Hemingway, Besedka Johnson, Karren Karagulian, Stella Maeve, James Ransone