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‘Silver Linings Playbook’ Wins Four Independent Spirit Awards, Hunt and Hawkes Win for ‘Sessions,’ Full List of Winners

'Silver Linings Playbook' Wins Four Independent Spirit Awards, Hunt and Hawkes Win for 'Sessions,' Full List of Winners

Going in it was Fox Searchlight’s scrappy “Beasts of the Southern Wild” vs. Weinstein Co.’s “Silver Linings Playbook” at the 28th Annual Film Independent Spirit Awards Saturday at the sunny beach in Santa Monica. The show, which airs at 10 PM on IFC, was hosted by SNL’s Andy Samberg, who played well to the room; the highlights were several video spoofs of the nominees, including Samberg’s Skype auditions. “We’ve got Matthew McConaughey,” said Samberg. “Hollywood fuck you!” (See our backstage coverage here.)

In the end, “Silver Linings” prevailed with four awards: best feature, actress (Oscar frontrunner Jennifer Lawrence), director and screenplay (David O. Russell), while “Beasts” had to settle for best cinematography (Ben Richardson). “Bernie,” “Keep the Lights On” and “Moonrise Kingdom,” even with the Coppola clan on hand to support Roman, went home empty-handed. (Wes Anderson has been a no-show during awards season as he shoots a film in Europe.)

Searchlight’s “The Sessions” won two awards, for supporting actress Helen Hunt and best actor John Hawke, with a surprise win over “Silver Linings” star Bradley Cooper. At the Spirits the Oscar nominee often wins; in this case a dramatic performance beat out the comedic one. Hunt, who is not expected to win at the Oscars Sunday, said she was thrilled that writer-director Ben Lewin “made a movie about healthy sexuality…a miracle.”

Samberg gave Hawke a hard time about not going as nude as his co-star Hunt, saying:  “Come on man! I want to see that winter’s bone!”

As expected, Oscar foreign frontrunner “Amour” won best international film. Michael Haneke thanked Sony Pictures Classics, his actors Emmanuelle Riva and Jean-Louis Trintignant, who won Cesars Friday night, and said, “I’m the oldest man in the whole room!”

Skinny supporting actor winner Matthew McConaughey sang his acceptance speech for his performance as the owner of a male strip club in Steven Soderbergh’s “Magic Mike”: “I take my pants off to win a trophy!” He added, “Lets keep making indie movies, make specific stories not expensive ones.” The actor had a good night: he also told an hilarious story about co-starring with his mother in Richard Linklater’s “Bernie” in his intro to that nominated feature.

Best doc went to Kirby Dick’s Oscar-nominated “The Invisible War.” “Our service members are no longer invisible,” said producer Amy Ziering. John Cassavetes award-winner Ava DuVernay cited Cassavetes as a distributor as well as a director; she also did both on “Middle of Nowhere.”

Best first feature winner Stephen Chbosky, when accepting his win for adapting and directing his own novel “Perks of Being a Wallflower,” said, “smaller movies need big friends.” Indeed.

The Full List of Winners for the 2013 Film Independent Spirit Awards is below:

Silver Linings Playbook
PRODUCERS: Bruce Cohen, Donna Gigliotti, Jonathan Gordon


David O. Russell
Silver Linings Playbook

David O. Russell
Silver Linings Playbook

BEST FIRST FEATURE (Award given to the director and producer)
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
DIRECTOR:  Stephen Chbosky
PRODUCERS:  Lianne Halfon, John Malkovich, Russell Smith

Derek Connolly
Safety Not Guaranteed

JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD – Given to the best feature made for under $500,000.  Award given to the writer, director, and producer.  Executive Producers are not awarded.

Middle of Nowhere
PRODUCERS:  Howard Barish, Paul Garnes
Jennifer Lawrence
Silver Linings Playbook

John Hawkes
The Sessions
Helen Hunt
The Sessions

Matthew McConaughey
Magic Mike

Ben Richardson
Beasts of the Southern Wild

BEST DOCUMENTARY (Award given to the director and producer)

The Invisible War
DIRECTOR:  Kirby Dick
PRODUCERS: Tanner King Barklow, Amy Ziering
BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM (Award given to the director)
DIRECTOR:  Michael Haneke

16th ANNUAL PIAGET PRODUCERS AWARD – The 16th annual Piaget Producers Award honors emerging producers who, despite highly limited resources demonstrate the creativity, tenacity, and vision required to produce quality, independent films.  The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by Piaget.

Stones in the Sun
PRODUCER: Mynette Louie
19th ANNUAL SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD – The 19th annual Someone to Watch Award recognizes a talented filmmaker of singular vision who has not yet received appropriate recognition.  The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant.

Gimme the Loot
STELLA ARTOIS TRUER THAN FICTION AWARD – The 18th annual Truer Than Fiction Award is presented to an emerging director of non-fiction features who has not yet received significant recognition.  The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant.
The Waiting Room
DIRECTOR: Peter Nicks

ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD – (Given to one film’s director, casting director, and its ensemble cast)
Director: Sean Baker
Casting Director: Julia Kim
  Ensemble Cast: Dree Hemingway, Besedka Johnson, Karren Karagulian, Stella Maeve, James Ransone

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