Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan garnered four awards at Saturday’s Independent Spirit Awards, basically outperforming any other film. The film won top honors with Best Feature. Aronofsky won Best Director, while Natalie Portman was awarded Best Female Lead and Matthew Libatique was honored for Best Cinematography. Winter’s Bone had been the front-runner going into Saturday’s ceremony with seven nominations, but it only won two awards (for Best Supporting Actor and Actress). John Hawkes and Dale Dickey earned those awards.
James Franco won Best Male Lead for his role in 127 Hours and The King’s Speech even made an appearance, named Best Foreign Film. Screenwriters Stuart Blumberg and Lisa Cholodenko won Best Screenplay for The Kids Are All Right (beating out writers of Rabbit Hole and Winter’s Bone). In a moment we may see again at the upcoming Oscars, Exit Through the Gift Shop won for Best Documentary Feature.
An awards show for the sometimes under-appreciated low-budget film, the Indie Spirit Awards ceremony honors films with budgets under $20 million, mostly made by Americans. It’s nice to notice the “little people” (and I don’t mean midgets). Joel McHale hosted this year’s Indie Spirit Awards, held in Santa Monica where it originated. Last year the ceremony was held in downtown L.A., but the move drew criticism as more attention, glitz and glamour came with the new locale. That’s typical of Hollywood, and “typical Hollywood” is the last thing the Indie Spirit Awards stand for.