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Ray Pride

By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

The Gotham Awards winners

The two most interesting awards for me: Nods for the relatively low-grossing marvel Hurt Locker, and for Best Film Not Playing Near You (for which I was a juror) for Ry Russo-Young’s You Wont Miss Me, which I liked a lot at Sundance. The full list of the IFP’s indie nods below. The Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP), the nation’s oldest and largest organization of independent filmmakers, announced today the winners of the 19th Annual Gotham Independent Film Awards™ at a ceremony held at New York City’s Cipriani Wall Street. Twenty-two films received nominations in six competitive categories, including: Best Feature, Best Documentary, Breakthrough Director, Breakthrough Actor, Gothams 2009_613.jpegBest Ensemble Performance and Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You®. For the second year, the recipient of the Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You award will receive a cash award of $5,000 provided by Reiff & Associates, a full service brokerage firm specializing in Arts & Entertainment Insurance.
In addition to the competitive awards, career tributes were presented to actors Natalie Portman and Stanley Tucci, filmmaker Kathryn Bigelow and producer/executives Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, Co-Chairman of Working Title Films.
Best Feature presented by actress Shohreh Aghdashloo.
THE HURT LOCKER Directed and produced by Kathryn Bigelow; Written and produced by Mark Boal; Produced by Nicolas Chartier and Greg Shapiro. The Best Feature Jury: actress Shohreh Aghdashloo; filmmakers Julie Taymor and William Friedkin, producer Wendy Finerman and musician/composer Stewart Copeland.
Best Documentary presented by actor Melonie Diaz and filmmaker Brett Morgen
FOOD, INC. Directed and produced by Robert Kenner; Produced by Elise Pearlstein The Best Documentary Jury: editor Sabine Hoffman and filmmakers Edet Belzberg, Albert and Allen Hughes, Brett Morgen and Julia Reichert.
Breakthrough Director Award presented by actors Rosie Perez and Anthony Mackie
ROBERT SIEGEL Writer and director, BIG FAN. T Breakthrough Director Jury: actors William H. Macy and Rosie Perez, filmmaker Marc Forster, producer Heather Rae, director of photography Matthew Libatique, and editor Christopher Tellefsen.
Breakthrough Actor Award presented by actors Ellen Burstyn and Oliver Platt
CATALINA SAAVEDRA Actress, THE MAID. The Breakthrough Actor Jury included: actors Ellen Burstyn, Melonie Diaz and Oliver Platt, and filmmakers Jesse Peretz and David O. Russell.
Best Ensemble Performance Award presented by actress and author Brooke Shields and writer/director Richard LaGravenese. JEREMY RENNER, ANTHONY MACKIE, BRIAN GERAGHTY, RALPH FIENNES, GUY PEARCE, DAVID MORSE AND EVANGELINE LILLY in THE HURT LOCKER. The Best Ensemble Performance Jury: actors Dylan Baker, America Ferrera, Brooke Shields, writer/director Richard LaGravenese, and producer Susan Stover.
Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You Award presented by actors Patricia Clarkson and Sam Rockwell. YOU WONT MISS ME Ry Russo-Young, director, producer and co-writer.


The recipient of The Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You™ award was determined by the editors of Filmmaker magazine, a publication of IFP, and a curator from The Museum of Modern Art.
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The Premier sponsor of the 2009 Gotham Independent Film Awards™ is The New York Times. The awards were promoted nationally in an eight-page special advertising section in The New York Times on Tuesday, November 24th. Presenting Sponsors: A Diamond Is Forever, Focus Features, Stella Artois and Universal Pictures.
About Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP)
After debuting with a program in the 1979 New York Film Festival, the nonprofit IFP has evolved into the nation’s oldest and largest organization of independent filmmakers, and also the premier advocate for them. Since its start, IFP has supported the production of 7,000 films and provided resources to more than 20,000 filmmakers’ voices that otherwise might not have been heard. IFP believes that independent films broaden the palette of cinema, seeding the global culture with new ideas, kindling awareness, and fostering activism.
Currently, IFP represent a network of 10,000 filmmakers in New York City and around the world. Through its workshops, seminars, conferences, mentorships, and Filmmaker Magazine, IFP schools its members in the art, technology, and business of independent filmmaking (there are special programs to promote racial, ethnic, religious, ideological, gender, and sexual diversity). IFP builds audiences by hosting screenings, often in collaboration with other cultural institutions and also bestows the Gotham Independent Film Awards™, the first honors of the film awards season. When all is said and done, IFP fosters the development of 350 feature and documentary films each year. www.ifp.org
About the Gotham Independent Film Awards™
The Gotham Independent Film Awards, selected by distinguished juries and presented in New York City, the home of independent film, are the first honors of the film awards season. This public showcase honors the filmmaking community, expands the audience for independent films, and supports the work that IFP does behind the scenes throughout the year to bring such films to fruition. For info: http://gotham.ifp.org

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“Ten years ago at Telluride, I said on a panel that theatrical distribution was dying. It seemed obvious to me. I was surprised how many in the audience violently objected: ‘People will always want to go to the movies!’ That’s true, but it’s also true that theatrical cinema as we once knew it has died. Theatrical cinema is now Event Cinema, just as theatrical plays and musical performances are Events. No one just goes to a movie. It’s a planned occasion. Four types of Event Cinema remain.
1. Spectacle (IMAX-style blockbusters)
2. Family (cartoon like features)
3. Horror (teen-driven), and
4. Film Club (formerly arthouse but now anything serious).

There are isolated pockets like black cinema, romcom, girl’s-night-out, seniors, teen gross-outs, but it’s primarily those four. Everything else is TV. Now I have to go back to episode five of ‘Looming Tower.'”
~ Paul Schrader

“Because of my relative candor on Twitter regarding why I quit my day job, my DMs have overflowed with similar stories from colleagues around the globe. These peeks behind the curtains of film festivals, venues, distributors and funding bodies weren’t pretty. Certain dismal patterns recurred (and resonated): Boards who don’t engage with or even understand their organization’s artistic mission and are insensitive to the diverse neighborhood in which their organization’s venue is located; incompetent founders and/or presidents who create only obstacles, never solutions; unduly empowered, Trumpian bean counters who chip away at the taste and experiences that make organizations’ cultural offerings special; expensive PR teams that don’t bring to the table a bare-minimum familiarity with the rich subcultural art form they’re half-heartedly peddling as “product”; nonprofit arts organizations for whom art now ranks as a distant-second goal behind profit.”
~ Eric Allen Hatch