The films Past Lives, by Celine Song, May December, by Todd Haynes and American Fiction by Cord Jefferson received five nominations, including best feature film, at the Film Independent’s Spirit Awards.
Song’s romantic film, starring Greta Lee and Teo Yoo as childhood friends who reconnect later in life, landed nominations for its direction, its screenplay and for its two actors.
May December, about an actress who meets a woman she will play on screen in connection with a scandalous affair, received nominations for its actors, Natalie Portman and Charles Melton, as well as for its screenwriter, Samy Burch.
As for American Fiction, the work of lead actor Jeffrey Wright in the role of a frustrated novelist was recognized, as were actors Erika Alexander and Sterling K. Brown. Jefferson was nominated for his screenplay, but not for his direction.
The Spirit Awards limit eligibility to productions with budgets of $30 million or less, meaning films like Oppenheimer, Maestro and Poor Things are not nominated. The organization has also moved to gender-neutral acting awards in 2022.
Last year’s big winner was Everything Everywhere All At Once, which took home seven awards, including Best Feature Film, Best Director and Best Actor for Michelle Yeoh and Ke Huy Quan – categories in which they went on to win won the Oscars.
The Spirit Awards also reward television series. Among the series nominated, we find Jury Duty, for best series and best cast as well as Beef for best series and actors Steven Yeun and Ali Wong. The series The Last of Us finds itself in the running for its actors Bella Ramsey, Murray Bartlett and Nick Offerman. Billie Eilish was also cast in Swarm.
Saturday Night Live’s Aidy Bryant hosts the ceremony, which takes place on February 25 in Santa Monica, California. The gala will be broadcast live on the IMDb and Film Independent YouTube channels.