From the chilly beach in Santa Monica, the 34th edition of the Film Independent Spirit Awards took place today on the eve of the Academy Awards. Hosted by Ingrid Goes West star (which won last year for Best First Feature) and Parks and Recreation alum Aubrey Plaza, the ceremony recognizes the best in independent film from the year that celebrates originality and brings the “indie spirit” to a wider audience — and Deadline was there for every minute of the ceremony. Anthony D’Alessandro, Dominic Patten and Matt Grobar were on the ground at the Spirit Awards live blogging while Dino-Ray Ramos will be lending an assist from the edit desk.
Barry Jenkins’s If Beale Street Could Talk was the big winner of the evening taking home three awards including Best Director, Best Supporting Female for Regina King (her first Spirit Award) and the top prize Best Feature. Other winners included Boots Riley for Sorry To Bother You, Glenn Close winning for Best Female Lead for The Wife, Ethan Hawke for Best Male Lead for First Reformed and Richard E. Grant for Can You Ever Forgive Me? Read the complete list of winners here.
The Spirit Awards aren’t necessarily an on-the-nose predictor for Oscar winners, but they are somewhat of a barometer. Last year, Jordan Peele’s Get Out won Best Feature and Best Director but didn’t win the top prize at the Academy Awards. However, Peele won an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. Frances McDormand won for Best Female Lead for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri and she went on to win the Oscar while Timothee Chalamet won for Best Male Lead, but walked away empty-handed at the Academy Awards.
The Indie Spirit Awards is essentially a hip, less buttoned-up ceremony that is filled with films that take artistic risks and essentially pave the path to the future of storytelling in cinema. They are like the cool, well-traveled artsy uncle or aunt of awards shows. From winners to speeches to unexpected moments read how it went down below.