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WINTER'S BONE Is Big Winner At Gotham Awards

 

WINTER'S BONE, the debut feature by director Debra Granik that won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival, continues to cement its status as this year's "indie it" film with major wins at the Gotham Independent Film Awards, which were held in New York City on Monday evening. The 20th edition of the Awards gala, which is sponsored by the IFP, the indie filmmakers membership organization that also sponsors the New York Film Week market and screenings each September, was held at Cipriani Wall Street in Lower Manhattan.

The Awards, hosted by indie darlings Patricia Clarkson and Stanley Tucci, is the first awards show of the season and offers pointers to films that will be similarly honored by film critics groups, and possibly receive Golden Globe and Oscar nominations. WINTER'S BONE was the big winner, receiving Best Feature and Best Ensemble Cast prizes. Kevin Asch won the Breakthrough Director prize for his Hasidim-on-a-crime-spree film HOLY ROLLERS starring the red-hot Jesse Eisenberg from THE SOCIAL NETWORK. The documentary THE OATH won Best Documentary honors, while LITTLEROCK, a low budget indie that has yet to find theatrical distribution won the Best Film Not Playing At A Theater Near You award.

 

Ronald Bronstein, a veteran character actor, received the Breakthrough Actor prize for his tour-de-force role as a dysfunctional father in DADDY LONGLEGS (a prize that WINTER'S BONE teenage actress Jennifer Lawrence seemed on target to win). For the first time, the Awards included a new prize called the Festival Genius Breakthrough Award which was given to director Davis Guggenheim for his insightful doc on the decline of the American education system, WAITING FOR SUPERMAN. Aside from the film prizes, the Awards offered tributes to director Darren Aronofsky (BLACK SWAN), producer/distributor/screenwriter James Schamus (BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN) and actors Robert Duvall (GET LOW) and double Oscar-winner Hilary Swank. Among the stars who serves as presenters were Natalie Portman, Anthony Mackie, Paul Rudd, Julianna Marguiles, Anne Hathaway, Jesse Eisenberg, Bill Murray and Winona Ryder.

Sandy Mandelberger, Awards Watch Editor

 

Best Feature
“Winter’s Bone”, directed Debra Granik, produced by Alix Madigan-Yorkin

Best Documentary
“The Oath”, directed and produced by Laura Poitras

Best Ensemble Performance
“Winter’s Bone”, Jennifer Lawrence, John Hawkes, Dale Dickey, Lauren Sweetser, Garret Dillahunt, Kevin Breznahan

Breakthrough Director
Kevin Asch, “Holy Rollers”

Breakthrough Actor
Ronald Bronstein, “Daddy Longlegs”

Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You
“Littlerock”, directed by Mike Ott, produced by Frederick Thornton, Laura Ragsdale, Sierra Leoni

Festival Genius Audience Award
“Waiting For Superman”, directed by Davis Guggenheim, produced by Lesley Chilcott

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