Gotham Awards: Todd Haynes to Receive Director Tribute; Best Screenplay Category Added

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Todd Haynes

The indie-film honors will presented on Nov. 30 at Cipriani Wall Street in New York, with nominees announced on Oct. 22.

The Gotham Independent Film Awards have announced that Todd Haynes will receive this year's director tribute. The indie-film ceremony is also adding a best screenplay award to its lineup of competitive prizes.

“We are thrilled to present the director tribute to Todd Haynes in our 25th anniversary year” said Joana Vicente, executive director of the Independent Filmmakers Project, which presents the Gotham Awards. “Todd’s career exemplifies precisely the kind of visionary, independent filmmaking the Gotham Awards first began championing in 1991. We’re also honored to celebrate screenwriting this year for the first time, finally giving due credit to the significance of this craft to independent film as an art form.”

The director tribute is awarded to a veteran filmmaker with unique vision who has made a significant contribution to the film industry.

Haynes' latest film, Carol, is an awards hopeful that is set to hit theaters in November. Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara star in the 1950s-set lesbian love story, based on Patricia Highsmith's novel The Price of Salt, which premiered at this year's Cannes Film Festival, where Mara won the best actress award. His 2002 film Far From Heaven received four Oscar nominations, including one for best original screenplay. His other acclaimed films include his feature debut Poison, Safe, Velvet Goldmine and I'm Not There, which imagined the life and work of Bob Dylan through seven fictional characters. Haynes also directed and co-wrote the five-hour mini-series Mildred Pierce, which won five Emmys and was nominated for 16 more and won three Golden Globes.

In addition to Haynes' accolade, the Gotham Awards will hand out an industry and actor/actress tributes, whose recipients have yet to be announced.

The Gotham Awards' new best screenplay prize marks its eighth competitive award. The new honor, which will be presented to the film's credited writers, will be awarded to an outstanding original or adapted screenplay for an independent fictional feature. The Gotham Awards' other categories are: best feature, best actress, best actor, best documentary, Bingham Ray breakthrough director, breakthrough actor and audience award.

The Gotham Awards traditionally marks the official start of Oscar season, recognizing the best in independent film. Recent past winners have included Oscar nominees Birdman, Boyhood, Citizenfour, Inside Llewyn Davis, The Act of Killing, Moonrise Kingdom, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Beginners, The Tree of Life, Winter’s Bone and The Hurt Locker.

Past director honorees include Bennett Miller, Richard Linklater, David Cronenberg, Spike Lee, David O. Russell, Martin Scorsese and Gus Van Sant.

The 25th annual Gotham Independent Film Awards are set for Monday, Nov. 30 at Cipriani Wall Street in New York. Nominees in the Gotham Awards' competitive categories will be announced on Oct. 22.