Hollywood got its first glimpse of potential Oscar contenders on Tuesday, with nominations for the Spirit Awards, awards reserved for independent films, where three films are neck and neck: “May December, “American Fiction” and “Past Lives – Our lives before.”
These three feature films received five nominations each, including best film. Accolades that bode well for other competitions where they will appear.
The Spirit Awards only judge films with a budget of less than $30 million, but they are widely followed because they often help identify independent films with a chance in the Oscar race.
Over the last decade, they honored “Moonlight”, “Spotlight” and “Birdman”, before these works won the Oscar for best film.
Produced by Netflix, “May December” sees Natalie Portman play a Hollywood actress who goes to Georgia to understand the woman who must inspire the character of her new film: a mother who had made the headlines of the tabloids by falling madly in love of a college student.
For its part, “American Fiction” stars Jeffrey Wright in the role of an author who mocks the era of the times by writing a stereotypical “black” book to please his publishing house. An attempt which backfired, because the work became a bestseller.
Finally, “Past Lives” is a Korean-American drama in which childhood friends reunite after taking very different paths in life.
Other films up for the Spirit Award for Best Picture are “Without Ever Knowing Us,” “Passages” and “We Grown Now.”
The Spirit Awards will be presented on February 25. Votes for the Oscars will close two days later, and the ceremony for the most prestigious American awards will take place on March 10.
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