London Film Fest unveils best film noms

9 nominees for Times BFI London Film Fest inaugural award

LONDON -- The first best film nod to be presented during this year's The Times BFI 53rd London Film Festival will come from a list comprising "Balibo," "Bright Star," "Fantastic Mr. Fox," "Micmacs," "Nowhere Boy," "A Prophet," "The Road," "A Serious Man" and "The White Ribbon."

Organizers, announcing the shortlist Tuesday for the annual event's freshest award categories, also unveiled the names in the running for the second inaugural award, for best British newcomer.

Directors Malcolm Venville, J. Blakeson, Jordan Scott, Lindy Heymann, and Tom Harper are in the running alongside writers Leigh Campbell and Jack Thorne.

Heymann directed Campbell's script for "Kicks," while Thorne's words provided Harper with a directing project with "The Scouting Book for Boys." Venville directed "44 Inch Chest," Blakeson helmed "The Disappearance of Alice Creed" and Scott directed "Cracks." All efforts feature in this year's London Film Festival lineup.

Festival regular accolades The Sutherland Trophy and The Times BFI London Film Festival Grierson Award will also be dished out in a standalone dedicated awards ceremony for the first time in the event's history scheduled for Oct. 28 and hosted by journalist and broadcaster Paul Gambaccini.

Winners will receive a specially commissioned "Star of London" award designed by leading sculptor Almuth Tebbenhoff.

The highest accolade that the British Film Institute bestows, the BFI Fellowship, this year goes to British actor John Hurt and renowned Malian filmmaker Souleymane Cisse.

The best film award aims to recognize creative, original, imaginative, intelligent and distinctive filmmaking in the festival. An initial shortlist has been drawn up by the artistic director and the programming team.

This year's jury for the best film award is chaired by Anjelica Huston and comprises John Akomfrah, Jarvis Cocker, Matthieu Kassovitz, Charlotte Rampling and Iain Softley.

The best British newcomer award aims to celebrate new and emerging film talent.