Independent Spirit Awards

The 2020 Independent Spirit Awards nominations were announced on November 21, 2019, with The Lighthouse and Uncut Gems with the most nominations (five each).

Uncut Gems

The Independent Spirit Awards nominations were announced on November 21, 2019; what an amazing group of films! SIFF films are well represented this year, with all of the Best Feature nominations showing as part of a SIFF program.

The Lighthouse and Uncut Gems were the big nominees with five each. Other SIFF hits The Farewell and The Last Black Man in San Francisco, as well as Retablo (a SIFF 2017 New Works-in-Progress project which was nominated for Best International Film) and Festival hits Driveways, Premature, and The Third Wife all got some notice.

This year, 45% of Spirit Awards directing and writing nominees are women and 30% are people of color. Putting a focus on independently produced films, and with a budget cap of $22.5 million, the Spirit Awards showcase a mix of independent titles and higher-profile awards contenders, many of which we will see nominated again over the next months.

—Beth Barrett | SIFF Artistic Director

* denotes a film screening as part of a SIFF program

Best Feature
A Hidden Life (opens December 20 at SIFF Cinema Uptown)
Clemency (SIFF 2019)
The Farewell (SIFF 2019, SIFF Cinema)
Marriage Story (SIFF Members Day Celebration film)
Uncut Gems (opens December 25 at SIFF Cinema Egyptian)

Best Director
Robert Eggers – The Lighthouse*
Alma Har’el – Honey Boy
Julius Onah – Luce
Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie – Uncut Gems*
Lorene Scafaria – Hustlers

Best First Feature
The Climb
The Last Black Man In San Francisco*
The Mustang
See You Yesterday

Best Female Lead
Karen Allen – Colewell
Hong Chau – Driveways*
Elisabeth Moss – Her Smell*
Mary Kay Place – Diane*
Alfre Woodard – Clemency*
Renée Zellweger – Judy

Best Male Lead
Chris Galust – Give Me Liberty
Kelvin Harrison Jr. – Luce
Robert Pattinson – The Lighthouse*
Adam Sandler – Uncut Gems*
Matthias Schoenaerts – The Mustang

Best Supporting Female
Jennifer Lopez – Hustlers
Taylor Russell – Waves*
Zhao Shuzhen – The Farewell*
Lauren “Lolo” Spencer – Give Me Liberty
Octavia Spencer – Luce

Best Supporting Male
Willem Dafoe – The Lighthouse*
Noah Jupe – Honey Boy
Shia Labeouf – Honey Boy
Jonathan Majors – The Last Black Man in San Francisco*
Wendell Pierce – Burning Cane*

Best Screenplay
Noah Baumbach – Marriage Story*
Jason Begue, Shawn Snyder – To Dust*
Ronald Bronstein, Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie – Uncut Gems*
Chinonye Chukwu – Clemency*
Tarell Alvin Mccraney – High Flying Bird

Best First Screenplay
Fredrica Bailey, Stefon Bristol – See You Yesterday
Hannah Bos, Paul Thureen – Driveways*
Bridget Savage Cole, Danielle Krudy – Blow The Man Down
Jocelyn Deboer, Dawn Luebbe – Greener Grass*
James Montague, Craig W. Sanger – The Vast Of Night

Best Cinematography
Todd Banhazl – Hustlers
Jarin Blaschke – The Lighthouse*
Natasha Braier – Honey Boy
Chananun Chotrungroj – The Third Wife*
Pawel Pogorzelski – Midsommar*

Best Editing
Julie Béziau – The Third Wife*
Ronald Bronstein, Benny Safdie – Uncut Gems*
Tyler L. Cook – Sword Of Trust*
Louise Ford – The Lighthouse*
Kirill Mikhanovsky – Give Me Liberty

John Cassavetes Award
Burning Cane*
Give Me Liberty
Wild Nights With Emily*

Best Documentary
American Factory*
Apollo 11
For Sama*
Island of the Hungry Ghosts

Best International Film
Invisible Life, Brazil
Les Miserables, France*
Parasite, South Korea*
Portrait of a Lady on Fire, France
Retablo, Peru*
The Souvenir, United Kingdom

Someone to Watch Award
Rashaad Ernesto Green – Premature*
Ash Mayfair – The Third Wife*
Joe Talbot – The Last Black Man in San Francisco*