Per tradition, the New York Film Critics Circle (NYFCC) is the first major critics group in the country to announce their picks for the best films and performances of 2021. Today’s NYFCC announcement marks the third big awards season stop of the post-Thanksgiving week. The Gotham Awards were first out of the gate, giving the Best Film prize to Maggie Gyllenhaal’s “The Lost Daughter,” while the National Board of Review went with “Licorice Pizza” for Best Picture and Paul Thomas Anderson for Best Director. Founded in 1935, the NYFCC is made up of critics from daily and weekly newspapers, magazines, and online publications. IndieWire’s own film critics Eric Kohn, David Ehrlich, and Kate Erbland are members of the NYFCC.
The NYFCC is known for both honoring major Oscar players (see “The Irishman” winning Best Film in 2019 and Chloé Zhao taking Best Director last year) and also making some unconventional and beloved choices. The group’s picks for Best Actress have included Sidney Flanigan for “Never Rarely Sometimes Always,” Lupita Nyong’o for “Us,” and Regina Hall for “Support the Girls.” NYFCC memorably awarded Tiffany Haddish the Best Supporting Actress trophy for “Girls Trip” in 2017. While none of these performances went on to score Oscar nominations, their NYFCC wins did boost their potential in the awards race.
Last year’s NYFCC winner for Best Film was Kelly Reichardt’s “First Cow.” Zhao was named Best Director for “Nomadland” and repeated her win in this category at the Academy Awards. The acting winners included Flanigan, Delroy Lindo for “Da 5 Bloods,” Chadwick Boseman for “Da 5 Bloods,” and Maria Bakalova for “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm.” Only Bakalova went on to earn an Oscar nomination, although Boseman was Oscar nominated for “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.”
The full list of 2021 New York Film Critics Circle winners will be updating live below throughout the morning. Refresh this page to see the most up-to-date winners.
Best Film: “Drive My Car”
Best Director: Jane Campion for “The Power of the Dog”
Best Screenplay: Paul Thomas Anderson for “Licorice Pizza”
Best Actress: Lady Gaga for “House of Gucci”
Best Actor: Benedict Cumberbatch for “The Power of the Dog”
Best Supporting Actress: Kathryn Hunter for “The Tragedy of Macbeth”
Best Supporting Actor: Kodi Smit-McPhee for “The Power of the Dog”
Best Cinematography: “West Side Story”
Best Non-Fiction Film: “Flee”
Best Foreign Language Film: “The Worst Person in the World”
Best Animated Feature: “The Mitchells vs. the Machines”
Best First Film: “The Lost Daughter”
SPECIAL AWARD: Maya Cade for the creation of the Black Film Archive.
SPECIAL AWARD: Diane Weyermann, posthumous award for supporting daring and impactful filmmaking at Sundance and Participant.
SPECIAL AWARD: Marshall Fine for his years of service as NYFCC’s General Manager and decades on the NY film scene