The New York Film Critics Circle will move up their annual vote for the 2011 Film Critics Circle Awards to November 28, ahead of the December 1 National Board of Review meeting, which historically has been the first year-end group to vote. The NYFCC will meet at the Walter Reade Theatre at Lincoln Center.
The Los Angeles Film Critics Association and Hollywood Foreign Press Association will all be adding pressure to distributors to screen their movies in a timely manner; the LAFCA will meet this weekend to pick their date, usually in early December; Golden Globe screening deadline is December 7. While still-to-be-seen J. Edgar (from Clint Eastwood) will open the AFI FEST on November 3, filmmakers Steven Spielberg and Stephen Daldry are known for holding onto their tinkering privileges until the last minute. Both Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close and War Horse are high-profile late-breaking December films. So is Weinstein Co.’s The Iron Lady (December 16), starring Meryl Streep as Maggie Thatcher.
The NYFCC awards will be given out at a January 9th ceremony. Critics Circle Chairman John Anderson says they are “excited about kicking off the annual end-of-year discussion with our new early voting date,” and believes that based on what they’ve seen so far, they have “another passionate debate amongst our members” to look forward to. The Circle considers their awards “a principled alternative to the Oscars,” immune to the politics and commerciality of the Oscars. Last year’s NYFCC winners went like this:
Best Picture: The Social Network
Best Director: David Fincher, The Social Network
Best Screenplay: Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg, The Kids Are All Right
Best Actress: Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right
Best Actor, Colin Firth: The King’s Speech
Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo, The Fighter
Best Supporting Actor: Mark Ruffalo, The Kids Are All Right
Best Cinematographer: Matthew Libatique, Black Swan
Joining Chairman John Anderson in leading the group is this year’s Vice-Chairman, Time Out New York Senior Film Writer Joshua Rothkopf, who will assume the duties of Chairman for 2012. Additions to the group are returning voting member Amy Taubin of Film Comment and a new member, Salon film critic Andrew O’ Hehir.