Independent Spirit Awards: 'Eighth Grade,' 'First Reformed' Among Best Feature Nominees

10:36 AM 11/16/2018

by Hilary Lewis

'We the Animals' scored the most mentions, racking up five.

Film Independent on Friday announced the nominees for the 2019 Independent Spirit Awards.

The nominees were revealed at a press conference co-hosted by Gemma Chan and Molly Shannon at Los Angeles' W Hotel. 

We the Animals, documentary filmmaker Jeremiah Zagar's narrative debut about a mixed-race family with three young sons in upstate New York and based on Justin Torres' 2011 debut novel of the same namescored the most mentions with five. Eighth Grade, First Reformed and You Were Never Really Here landed four apiece.

Eighth Grade, First Reformed and You Were Never Really Here were nominated for the best feature award, where they will face off against If Beale Street Could Talk and Leave No Trace.

Beale Street and Leave No Trace each received three noms, as did Private Life, Socrates, The Tale and Wildlife.

Films recognized twice include A Bread Factory; Can You Ever Forgive Me?; Hale County This Morning, This Evening; Hereditary; Madeline's Madeline; Minding the Gap; Nancy; On Her Shoulders; Sorry to Bother You; and Suspiria.

Suspiria will receive the Robert Altman Award, given to a film's director, casting director and ensemble cast. Additionally, Luca Guadagnino's Dakota Johnson starrer is up for best cinematography.

Best director nominees include Leave No Trace's Debra Granik, Beale Street's Barry Jenkins, Private Life's Tamara Jenkins, You Were Never Really Here's Lynne Ramsay and First Reformed's Paul Schrader.

Best first feature nominees include Hereditary, Sorry to Bother You, The Tale, We the Animals and Wildlife.

Schrader and Jenkins are also up for best screenplay alongside the writers of Colette, Can You Ever Forgive Me? and Sorry to Bother You.

Meanwhile, Eighth Grade screenwriter Bo Burnham will vie for best first screenplay, along with the writers of Nancy, Thoroughbreds, The Tale and Blame.

Best female lead nominees are Glenn Close (The Wife), Toni Collette (Hereditary), Elsie Fisher (Eighth Grade), Regina Hall (Support the Girls), Helena Howard (Madeline's Madeline) and Carey Mulligan (Wildlife).

In the category of best male lead, First Reformed's Ethan Hawke and You Were Never Really Here's Joaquin Phoenix will compete against Searching's John Cho, Blindspotting's Daveed Diggs and Socrates' Christian Malheiros. 

In the best supporting female category, the nominees are Kayli Carter (Private Life), Tyne Daly (A Bread Factory), Regina King (Beale Street), Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie (Leave No Trace) and J. Smith-Cameron (Nancy).

Best supporting male nominees are Raul Castillo (We the Animals), Adam Driver (BlacKkKlansman), Richard E. Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), Josh Hamilton (Eighth Grade) and John David Washington (Monsters and Men).

This summer's hit Fred Rogers documentary Won't You Be My Neighbor? is up for best documentary alongside Hale County, Minding the Gap, Of Fathers and Sons, On Her Shoulders and Shirkers.

Two of this year's high-profile awards contenders were recognized with best international film nominations: Roma (representing Mexico) and The Favourite (U.K.). Other nominees in the category include South Korea's Burning, Italy's Happy as Lazzaro and Japan's Shoplifters.

The 34th Spirit Awards will air live Feb. 23 at 2 p.m. PT on IFC. The ceremony will, as usual, be held on the beach in Santa Monica.

In terms of distributor breakdown, A24 scored 12 noms, followed by Amazon Studios, Netflix and The Orchard with six each and Annapurna Pictures with five.

A full list of this year's nominees follows.

  • Best Feature

    Award given to the producer. Executive Producers are not awarded.

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    If Beale Street Could Talk (WINNER)
    Producers: Dede Gardner, Barry Jenkins, Jeremy Kleiner, Sara Murphy, Adele Romanski

    Eighth Grade
    Producers: Eli Bush, Scott Rudin, Christopher Storer, Lila Yacoub

    First Reformed
    Producers: Jack Binder, Greg Clark, Gary Hamilton, Victoria Hill, David Hinojosa, Frank Murray, Deepak Sikka, Christine Vachon

    Leave No Trace
    Producers: Anne Harrison, Linda Reisman, Anne Rosellini

    You Were Never Really Here
    Producers: Rosa Attab, Pascal Caucheteux, Rebecca O'Brien, Lynne Ramsay, James Wilson

  • Best First Feature

    Award given to the director and producer.

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Sorry to Bother You (WINNER)
    Director: Boots Riley
    Producers: Nina Yang Bongiovi, Jonathan Duffy, Charles D. King, George Rush, Forest Whitaker, Kelly Williams

    Hereditary
    Director: Ari Aster
    Producers: Kevin Frakes, Lars Knudsen, Buddy Patrick

    The Tale
    Director/Producer: Jennifer Fox
    Producers: Sol Bondy, Lawrence Inglee, Mynette Louie, Oren Moverman, Simone Pero, Reka Posta, Laura Rister, Regina K. Scully, Lynda Weinman

    We the Animals
    Director: Jeremiah Zagar
    Producers: Andrew Goldman, Christina D. King, Paul Mezey, Jeremy Yaches

    Wildlife
    Director/Producer: Paul Dano
    Producers: Andrew Duncan, Jake Gyllenhaal, Riva Marker, Oren Moverman, Ann Ruark, Alex Saks

  • 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.)

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    En el Septimo Dia (WINNER)
    Writer/Director/Producer: Jim McKay
    Producers: Alex Bach, Lindsey Cordero, Caroline Kaplan, Michael Stipe

    A Bread Factory
    Writer/Director/Producer: Patrick Wang
    Producers: Daryl Freimark, Matt Miller

    Never Goin' Back
    Writer/Director: Augustine Frizzell
    Producers: Liz Cardenas, Toby Halbrooks, James M. Johnston

    Socrates
    Writer/Director/Producer: Alex Moratto
    Writer: Thayná Mantesso
    Producers: Ramin Bahrani, Jefferson Paulino, Tammy Weiss

    Thunder Road
    Writer/Director: Jim Cummings
    Producers: Natalie Metzger, Zack Parker, Benjamin Weissner

  • Best Director

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Barry Jenkins (WINNER)
    If Beale Street Could Talk

    Debra Granik
    Leave No Trace

    Tamara Jenkins
    Private Life

    Lynne Ramsay
    You Were Never Really Here

    Paul Schrader
    First Reformed

  • Best Screenplay

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty (WINNER)
    Can You Ever Forgive Me?

    Richard Glatzer (Writer/Story By), Rebecca Lenkiewicz & Wash Westmoreland
    Colette

    Tamara Jenkins
    Private Life

    Boots Riley
    Sorry to Bother You

    Paul Schrader
    First Reformed

  • Best First Screenplay

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Bo Burnham (WINNER)
    Eighth Grade

    Christina Choe
    Nancy

    Cory Finley
    Thoroughbreds

    Jennifer Fox
    The Tale

    Quinn Shephard (Writer/Story By), Laurie Shephard (Story By)
    Blame

  • Best Cinematography

    Alessio Bolzoni/Amazon Studios

    Sayombhu Mukdeeprom (WINNER)
    Suspiria

    Ashley Connor
    Madeline's Madeline

    Diego Garcia
    Wildlife

    Benjamin Loeb
    Mandy

    Zak Mulligan
    We the Animals

  • Best Editing

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Joe Bini (WINNER)
    You Were Never Really Here

    Keiko Deguchi, Brian A. Kates, Jeremiah Zagar
    We the Animals

    Luke Dunkley, Nick Fenton, Chris Gill, Julian Hart
    American Animals

    Anne Fabini, Alex Hall, Gary Levy
    The Tale

    Nick Houy
    Mid90s

  • Best Female Lead

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Glenn Close (WINNER)
    The Wife

    Toni Collette
    Hereditary

    Elsie Fisher
    Eighth Grade

    Regina Hall
    Support the Girls

    Helena Howard
    Madeline's Madeline

    Carey Mulligan
    Wildlife

  • Best Male Lead

    A24/Photofest

    Ethan Hawke (WINNER)
    First Reformed

    John Cho
    Searching

    Daveed Diggs
    Blindspotting

    Christian Malheiros
    Socrates

    Joaquin Phoenix
    You Were Never Really Here

  • Best Supporting Female

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Regina King (WINNER)
    If Beale Street Could Talk

    Kayli Carter
    Private Life

    Tyne Daly
    A Bread Factory

    Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie
    Leave No Trace

    J. Smith-Cameron
    Nancy

  • Best Supporting Male

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Richard E. Grant (WINNER)
    Can You Ever Forgive Me?

    Raul Castillo
    We the Animals

    Adam Driver
    BlackKklansman

    Josh Hamilton
    Eighth Grade

    John David Washington
    Monsters and Men

  • Robert Altman Award

    Given to one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast.

    'Suspiria'
    'Suspiria'
    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Suspiria
    Director: Luca Guadagnino
    Casting Directors: Avy Kaufman, Stella Savino
    Ensemble Cast: Malgosia Bela, Ingrid Caven, Lutz Ebersdorf, Elena Fokina, Mia Goth, Jessica Harper, Dakota Johnson, Gala Moody, Chloe Grace Moretz, Renée Soutendijk, Tilda Swinton, Sylvie Testud, Angela Winkler

  • Best Documentary

    Award given to the director and producer.

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Won't You Be My Neighbor? (WINNER)
    Director/Producer: Morgan Neville
    Producers: Caryn Capotosto, Nicholas Ma

    Hale County This Morning, This Evening
    Director/Producer: RaMell Ross
    Producers: Joslyn Barnes, Su Kim

    Minding the Gap
    Director/Producer: Bing Liu
    Producer: Diane Quon

    Of Fathers and Sons
    Director: Talal Derki
    Producers: Hans Robert Eisenhauer, Ansgar Frerich, Eva Kemme, Tobias N. Siebert

    On Her Shoulders
    Director: Alexandria Bombach
    Producers: Hayley Pappas, Brock Williams

    Shirkers
    Director/Producer: Sandi Tan
    Producers: Jessica Levin, Maya Rudolph

  • Best International Film

    Award given to the director

    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Roma (WINNER)
    Mexico
    Director: Alfonso Cuaron

    Burning
    South Korea
    Director: Lee Chang-Dong

    The Favourite
    United Kingdom
    Director: Yorgos Lanthimos

    Happy as Lazzaro
    Italy
    Director: Alice Rohrwacher

    Shoplifters
    Japan
    Director: Kore-eda Hirokazu

  • Bonnie Award

    Bonnie Tiburzi Caputo joined American Airlines in 1973 at age 24, becoming the first female pilot to fly for a major U.S. airline. In her honor, the second Bonnie Award will recognize a mid-career female director with a $50,000 unrestricted grant, sponsored by American Airlines.

    Debra Granik
    Debra Granik
    Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

    Debra Granik (WINNER)

    Tamara Jenkins

    Karyn Kusama

  • Producers Award

    The 22nd annual Producers Award 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.

    John Shearer/Getty Images

    Shrihari Sathe (WINNER)

    Jonathan Duffy and Kelly Williams

    Gabrielle Nadig

  • Someone to Watch Award

    The 25th annual Someone to Watch Award recognizes a talented filmmaker of singular vision who has not yet received appropriate recognition. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant.

    Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images

    Alex Moratto (WINNER)
    Director of Socrates

    Ioana Uricaru
    Director of Lemonade

    Jeremiah Zagar
    Director of We the Animals

  • Truer Than Fiction Award

    The 24th 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.

    Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

    Bing Liu (WINNER)
    Director of Minding the Gap

    Alexandria Bombach
    Director of On Her Shoulders

    RaMell Ross
    Director of Hale County This Morning, This Evening