Carol directed by Todd Haynes

Carol directed by Todd Haynes lead nominations for the 2016 Spirit Awards with 6 nods including Best Feature, Best Director, Best Female Lead for both Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, Best Sreenplay and Best Cinematography. The other nominees for Best Feature included Anomalisa, Beasts of No Nation, Spotlight and Tangerine.

Spotlight was selected to receive the Robert Altman Award, which is bestowed upon one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast. The Altman Award was created in 2008 in honor of legendary director Robert Altman who was known for creating extraordinary ensemble casts.

“Spotlight is a remarkable film that excels on every level, but the Nominating Committee thought it was especially deserving of the Robert Altman Award,” said Welsh. “The film is beautifully cast with every member of the ensemble working together to tell the story of the Boston Globe investigating allegations of abuse in the Catholic Church.”

Winners will be announced at the Spirit Awards on Saturday, February 27, 2016.


(Award given to the Producer. Executive Producers are not awarded.)

Producers: Duke Johnson, Charlie Kaufman, Dino Stamatopoulos, Rosa Tran
Beasts of No Nation
Producers: Daniel Crown, Idris Elba, Cary Joji Fukunaga, Amy Kaufman, Daniela Taplin Lundberg, Riva Marker
Producers: Elizabeth Karlsen, Christine Vachon, Stephen Woolley
Producers: Blye Pagon Faust, Steve Golin, Nicole Rocklin, Michael Sugar
Producers: Sean Baker, Karrie Cox, Marcus Cox, Darren Dean, Shih-Ching Tsou

BEST FIRST FEATURE – Award given to the director and producer.

The Diary of a Teenage Girl
Director: Marielle Heller
Producers: Miranda Bailey, Anne Carey, Bert Hamelinck, Madeline Samit
James White
Director: Josh Mond
Producers: Max Born, Antonio Campos, Sean Durkin, Melody Roscher, Eric Schultz
Manos Sucias
Director: Josef Kubota Wladyka
Producers: Elena Greenlee, Márcia Nunes
Director: Jonas Carpignano
Producers: Jason Michael Berman, Chris Columbus, Jon Coplon, Christoph Daniel, Andrew Kortschak, John Lesher, Ryan Lough, Justin Nappi, Alain Peyrollaz, Gwyn Sannia, Marc Schmidheiny, Victor Shapiro, Ryan Zacarias
Songs My Brothers Taught Me
Director/Producer: Chloé Zhao
Producers: Mollye Asher, Nina Yang Bongiovi, Angela C. Lee, Forest Whitaker

JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD – Given to the best feature made for under $500,000. Award given to the writer, director and producer. Executive Producers are not awarded.

Writer/Director/Producer: Jennifer Phang
Writer/Producer: Jacqueline Kim
Producers: Robert Chang, Ken Jeong, Moon Molson, Theresa Navarro
Christmas, Again
Writer/Director/Producer: Charles Poekel
Heaven Knows What
Directors: Benny Safdie and Josh Safdie
Writers: Ronald Bronstein, Josh Safdie
Producers: Oscar Boyson, Sebastian Bear McClard
Writer/Director/Producer: Trey Edward Shults
Producers: Justin R. Chan, Chase Joliet, Wilson Smith
Out of My Hand
Writer/Director: Takeshi Fukunaga
Writer/Producer: Donari Braxton
Producer: Mike Fox


Sean Baker; Tangerine
Cary Joji Fukunaga; Beasts of No Nation
Todd Haynes; Carol
Duke Johnson & Charlie Kaufman; Anomalisa; Tom McCarthy
Spotlight; David Robert Mitchell
It Follows


Charlie Kaufman; Anomalisa
Donald Margulies; The End of the Tour
Tom McCarthy & Josh Singer; Spotlight
Phyllis Nagy; Carol
S. Craig Zahler; Bone Tomahawk


Jesse Andrews; Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
Jonas Carpignano; Mediterranea
Emma Donoghue; Room
Marielle Heller; The Diary of a Teenage Girl
John Magary, Story by Russell Harbaugh and Myna Joseph; The Mend


Cary Joji Fukunaga; Beasts of No Nation
Michael Gioulakis; It Follows
Ed Lachman; Carol
Reed Morano; Meadowland
Joshua James Richards; Songs My Brothers Taught Me


Ronald Bronstein and Benny Safdie; Heaven Knows What
Tom McArdle; Spotlight
Nathan Nugent; Room
Julio C. Perez IV; It Follows
Kristan Sprague; Manos Sucias


Cate Blanchett; Carol
Brie Larson; Room
Rooney Mara; Carol
Bel Powley; The Diary of a Teenage Girl
Kitana Kiki Rodriguez; Tangerine


Christopher Abbott; James White
Abraham Attah; Beasts of No Nation
Ben Mendelsohn; Mississippi Grind
Jason Segel; The End of the Tour
Koudous Seihon; Mediterranea


Robin Bartlett; H.
Marin Ireland; Glass Chin
Jennifer Jason Leigh; Anomalisa
Cynthia Nixon; James White
Mya Taylor; Tangerine


Kevin Corrigan; Results
Paul Dano; Love & Mercy
Idris Elba; Beasts of No Nation
Richard Jenkins; Bone Tomahawk
Michael Shannon; 99 Homes

ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD – Given to one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast.

Director: Tom McCarthy
Casting Directors:Kerry Barden and Paul Schnee
Ensemble Cast: Billy Crudup, Paul Guilfoyle, Neal Huff, Brian d’Arcy James, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Mark Ruffalo, Liev Schreiber, Jamey Sheridan, John Slattery, Stanley Tucci

BEST DOCUMENTARY – Award given to the director and producer.

Directors/Producers: Lyric R. Cabral & David Felix Sutcliffe
Producer: Christopher St. John

Best of Enemies
Directors/Producers: Robert Gordon and Morgan Neville

Heart of a Dog
Director/Producer: Laurie Anderson
Producer: Dan Janvey

The Look of Silence
Director:Joshua Oppenheimer
Producer: Signe Byrge Sørensen

Directors/Producers: Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi
Producer: Shannon Ethridge

The Russian Woodpecker
Director/Producer: Chad Gracia
Producers: Ram Devineni, Mike Lerner

BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM – Award given to the director.

Embrace of the Serpent (Colombia); Director: Ciro Guerra
Girlhood (France); Director: Céline Sciamma
Mustang (France, Turkey); Director: Deniz Gamze Ergüven
A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence (Sweden); Director: Roy Andersson
Son of Saul (Hungary); Director: László Nemes

19th ANNUAL PIAGET PRODUCERS AWARD – The 19th annual Producers Award, sponsored by Piaget, honors emerging producers who, despite highly limited resources, demonstrate the creativity, tenacity and vision required to produce quality, independent films. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by Piaget.

Darren Dean
Mel Eslyn
Rebecca Green and Laura D. Smith

22nd ANNUAL KIEHL’S SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD – The 22nd annual Someone to Watch Award, sponsored by Kiehl’s Since 1851, recognizes a talented filmmaker of singular vision who has not yet received appropriate recognition. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by Kiehl’s Since 1851.

God Bless the Child; Directors: Robert Machoian & Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck
King Jack; Director: Felix Thompson
Songs My Brothers Taught Me; Director: Chloé Zhao

21st TRUER THAN FICTION AWARD – The 21st annual Truer Than Fiction Award is presented to an emerging director of non-fiction features who has not yet received significant recognition. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant.

Among the Believers; Directors: Mohammed Ali Naqvi and Hemal Trivedi
Incorruptible; Director: Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi
A Woman Like Me; Directors: Elizabeth Giamatti and Alex Sichel

Subscribe for Blog Updates

Sign up for our latest updates.