Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) is the big winner of 30th Film Independent Spirit Awards winning the awards for Best Feature, Best Male Lead and Best Cinematography.

Other winners include Boyhood which won Best Director and Best Supporting Female; Nightcrawler which won Best First Feature and Best Screenplay; Whiplash which won Best Supporting Male and Best Editing; Still Alice, which won Best Female Lead; Dear White People, which won Best First Screenplay; Land Ho!, which won the John Cassavetes Award; Ida, which won Best International Film and CITIZENFOURwhich won Best Documentary.

The 8th annual Robert Altman Award was given to one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast. Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice received this award, along with casting director Cassandra Kulukundis and ensemble cast members Josh Brolin, Hong Chau, Martin Donovan, Jena Malone, Joanna Newsom, Joaquin Phoenix, Sasha Pieterse, Eric Roberts, Maya Rudolph, Martin Short, Serena Scott Thomas, Benicio del Toro, Katherine Waterston, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon and Michael Kenneth Williams.

The Special Distinction Award, given to a film for its uniqueness of vision, honesty of direction and screenwriting, superb acting and overall filmmaking achievement, was given to Foxcatcher. The award was given to director/producer Bennett Miller, producers Anthony Bregman, Megan Ellison, Jon Kilik, writers E. Max Frye, Dan Futterman, actors Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo, Channing Tatum.

The 2015 Roger and Chaz Ebert Foundation Fellowship which includes a cash grant of $10,000 was awarded to Christina Choe. This annual award is given to a filmmaker currently participating in a Film Independent Artist Development program with the mission of diversity in mind. Choe, a participant in the 2015 Directing Lab, is currently in active pre-production on her first narrative feature film, Nancy.

The following is a complete list of the winners:

Best Feature: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
Producers: Alejandro G. Iñárritu, John Lesher, Arnon Milchan, James W. Skotchdopole

Best Director: Richard Linklater (IFC Films)

Best Screenplay: Dan Gilroy, Nightcrawler (Open Road Films)

Best First Feature: Nightcrawler (Open Road Films)
Director: Dan Gilroy, Producers: Jennifer Fox, Tony Gilroy, Jake Gyllenhaal, David Lancaster, Michel Litvak

Best First Screenplay: Justin Simien, Dear White People (Roadside Attractions/ Lionsgate)

John Cassavetes Award (For best feature made under $500,000): Land Ho! (Sony Pictures Classics)
Writers/Directors: Aaron Katz, Martha Stephens, Producers: Christina Jennings, Mynette Louie, Sara Murphy

Best Supporting Female: Patricia Arquette, Boyhood (IFC Films)

Best Supporting Male: J.K. Simmons, Whiplash (Sony Pictures Classics)

Best Female Lead: Julianne Moore, Still Alice (Sony Pictures Classics)

Best Male Lead: Michael Keaton, Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Robert Altman Award: Inherent Vice (Warner Bros.)
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson, Casting Director: Cassandra Kulukundis, Ensemble Cast: Josh Brolin, Hong Chau, Martin Donovan, Jena Malone, Joanna Newsom, Joaquin Phoenix, Sasha Pieterse, Eric Roberts, Maya Rudolph, Martin Short, Serena Scott Thomas, Benicio del Toro, Katherine Waterston, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon, Michael Kenneth Williams

Best Cinematography: Emmanuel Lubezki, Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Best Editing:Tom Cross, Whiplash (Sony Pictures Classics)

Best International Film: Ida (Poland – Music Box Films)
Director: Pawel Pawlikowski

Best Documentary: CITIZENFOUR (RADiUS-TWC / HBO Documentary Films / Participant Media)
Director: Laura Poitras; Producers: Mathilde Bonnefoy, Dirk Wilutzky

Special Distinction Award: Foxcatcher (Sony Pictures Classics)
Director/Producer: Bennett Miller, Producers: Anthony Bregman, Megan Ellison, Jon Kilik, Writers: E. Max Frye, Dan Futterman, Actors: Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo, Channing Tatum

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