“Spotlight” was named best feature at the 2015 Gotham Awards, capping an evening of wins that also included the award for screenplay and a previously announced special jury prize for its acting ensemble. Actress Bel Powley beat out heavyweight competition-including Cate Blanchett, Blythe Danner and Lily Tomlin-to win the award for best actress, picking up the trophy for her work in “The Diary of a Teenage Girl,” while Paul Dano snagged best actor for his work in “Love & Mercy.” The Gothams also singled out “Mr Robot” as the winner of its award for breakthrough longform series.
The Gotham Awards mark the start of film industry’s awards season with a Nov 30 ceremony in New York, honoring winners drawn from a pool of independent contenders including “The Diary of a Teenage Girl,” which earned four nominations, as well as “Carol” and “Tangerine,” which picked up three apiece. Hosted by the “Broad City” duo of Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson, the evening also included the inaugural winners in new serialized content categories, which encompassed nominees from TV and digital.
“Spotlight” picked up the award for screenplay, snagging the trophy for Tom McCarthy, who also directed, and Josh Singer. The film went into the ceremony with one award already under its belt, having been the recipient of a previously announced special jury award for its acting ensemble, which includes Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, John Slattery, Stanley Tucci, Billy Crudup and Brian D’Arcy James.
The whole crew showed up to collect the award. “To get one actor to give an ego-sublimated, selfless performance is an achievement,” Ruffalo said. “To get a whole group of actors do it together is a frickin’ miracle!” “Tangerine” won the audience award at the 2015 Gotham Awards, with the film snagging that award soon after its win for the breakthrough actor award for star Mya Taylor.Broadcast live streaming video on Ustream Taylor wasn’t there to accept her award (she’d missed a flight), but “Tangerine” director Sean Baker spoke on behalf of the trans actress. “My hope is that the industry embraces Mya and embraces Kiki,” he said from the podium, referring also to Taylor’s co-star, Kitana Kiki Rodriguez. “They’ve also proven there’s trans talent out there, it’s just up to us to look, and up to us to cast.”
Nadia Manzoor and Radhka Vaz’s indie web series “Shugs and Fats” picked up the 2015 Gotham Award for breakthrough shortform series, becoming one of the first winners of the independent film awards’ new honors for serialized content. Joshua Oppenheimer’s “The Look of Silence” won the honor for best documentary. Glazer and Jacobson kicked off the ceremony with a little gentle ribbing of the Gothams, which earned a few jabs for a lineup of nominees full of dark subject matter. “You know what’s not too dark? The nominees for best actor and best actress,” Jacobson cracked. “That’s right. Eleven white people!” Glazer added.
The full list of 2015 nominees is below, with winners marked in bold. The list will update as the ceremony progresses.
Tom McCarthy, director; Michael Sugar, Steve Golin, Nicole Rocklin, Blye Pagan Faust, producers (Open Road Films)
The Look of Silence
Joshua Oppenheimer, director; Signe Byrge Sorensen, producer (Drafthouse Films)
Spotlight, Tom McCarthy and Josh Singer (Open Road Films)
Paul Dano in Love & Mercy (Roadside Attractions, Lionsgate, and River Road Entertainment)
Bel Powley in The Diary of a Teenage Girl (Sony Pictures Classics)
Mya Taylor in Tangerine (Magnolia Pictures)
The 2015 Best Actor/Best Actress nominating panel also voted to award a special Gotham Jury Award jointly to Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, John Slattery, Stanley Tucci and Brian D’Arcy James for their ensemble work in Spotlight. (Open Road Films).
Breakthrough Series – Long Form
“Mr Robot,” Sam Esmail, Creator (USA Network)
Breakthrough Series – Short Form
“Shugs and Fats,” Nadia Manzoor and Radhka Vaz, Creator (ShugsandFats.TV).-Reuters