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SEARCHING FOR SUGAR MAN Tops Best Documentary, PARANORMAN Tops Best Animated Film

Searching for Sugar Man RodriguezSearching for Sugar Man tops Best Documentary choices

[See previous post: "Kathryn Bigelow Zero Dark Thirty Best Director Front-Runner."] Malik Bendjelloul's Searching for Sugar Man, the Special Jury Prize winner at this year's Sundance Film Festival, is the top Best Documentary Feature choice so far this movie awards season – but only by a small margin. In fact, the Best Documentary category is probably the most diverse of all: 12 titles have won at least one award. (Image: '70s rocker Rodriguez Searching for Sugar Man.) [Intro: Movie Awards Season 2012 / 2013 Top Choices.]

Curiously, Eugene Jarecki's Sundance winner and Oscar 2013 semi-finalist The House I Live In is not one of the 2012 / 2013 awards season winners / nominees. Just as curiously, Jafar Panahi's widely acclaimed This Is Not a Film is another absentee from the list below. [Note from the editor: I've just learned that This Is Not a Film was not submitted to the IDA Awards or to most U.S. critics groups, though New York, Boston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco received screeners. As a non-U.S. effort, Panahi's non-fiction film was ineligible for the Gotham and Spirit Awards.]

Note: Of the documentaries listed below, those not found among the semi-finalists for the Best Documentary Feature Oscar 2013 are The Central Park Five, Jiro Dreams of Sushi, Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present, The Queen of Versailles, Stories We Tell, and West of Memphis.

The Lorax, Ice Age: Continental Drift: Animated blockbusters missing in action

Among the animated features listed below, the box office disappointment ParaNorman leads the pack. Note: Chico & Rita was in contention for last year's Academy Awards. All the other titles are eligible for the Best Animated Feature Oscar 2013. Two notable absences from this awards season's Best Animated Film selections are the blockbusters Dr. Seuss' The Lorax and Ice Age: Continental Drift.

Best Documentary

  • Malik Bendjelloul's Searching for Sugar Man: 7 wins (Dallas-Ft. Worth, Indiana, International Documentary Association, National Board of Review, Oklahoma, Phoenix, St. Louis). 1 nomination (Critics Choice).
  • Bart Layton's The Imposter: 3 wins (Austin, British Independent Film Awards, Kansas City). 1 nomination (Critics Choice).
  • Ken Burns, Sarah Burns, and David McMahon's The Central Park Five: 2 wins (New York, New York Online). 2 nominations: (Critics Choice, Spirit Awards).
  • Lee Hirsch's Bully: 2 wins (Las Vegas, Washington). 1 nomination (Critics Choice).
  • David France's How to Survive a Plague: 2 wins (Boston, Gotham). 1 nomination (Spirit Awards).
  • Kirby Dick's The Invisible War: 2 wins (Chicago, San Diego). 1 nomination: (Spirit Awards).
  • Lauren Greenfield's The Queen of Versailles: 2 wins (Florida, Southeastern). 1 nomination (Critics Choice).
  • Matthew Akers and Jeff Dupre's Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present: 1 win (Dublin). 1 nomination (Spirit Awards).
  • Peter Nicks' The Waiting Room: 1 win (San Francisco). 1 nomination (Spirit Awards).
  • Jeff Orlowski's Chasing Ice: 1 win (Satellite).
  • Dror Moreh's The Gatekeepers: 1 win (Los Angeles).
  • Lisanne Pajot and James Swirsky's Indie Game: The Movie: 1 win (Utah).
  • David Gelb's Jiro Dreams of Sushi: 1 win (Detroit).
  • Sarah Polley's Stories We Tell: 1 win (Toronto).
  • Amy J. Berg's West of Memphis: 1 nomination (Critics Choice).

Best Animated Feature

  • Chris Butler and Sam Fell's ParaNorman: 9 wins (Chicago, Dallas-Ft. Worth, Las Vegas, San Diego, San Francisco, Southeastern, Toronto, Utah, Washington). 2 nominations (Annie Awards, Critics Choice).
  • Tim Burton's Frankenweenie: 6 wins (Boston, Kansas City, Florida, Los Angeles, Nevada, New York). 3 nominations (Annie Awards, Critics Choice, Golden Globes).
  • Rich Moore's Wreck-It Ralph: 5 wins (Austin, National Board of Review, Oklahoma, Phoenix, St. Louis). 3 nominations (Annie Awards, Critics Choice, Golden Globes).
  • Peter Ramsey's Rise of the Guardians: 2 wins (Indiana, Satellite). 3 nominations (Annie Awards, Critics Choice, Golden Globes).
  • Fernando Trueba, Javier Mariscal, and Tono Errando's Chico & Rita: 1 win (New York Online).
  • Mark Andrews, Steve Purcell, and Brenda Chapman's Brave: 3 nominations (Annie Awards, Critics Choice, Golden Globes).
  • Genndy Tartakovsky's Hotel Transylvania: 2 nominations (Annie Awards, Golden Globes).
  • Eric Darnell, Tom McGrath, and Conrad Vernon's Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted: 1 nomination (Critics Choice).
  • Peter Lord and Jeff Newitt's The Pirates! Band of Misfits: 1 nomination (Annie Awards).
  • Joann Sfar and Antoine Delesvaux's The Rabbi's Cat: 1 nomination (Annie Awards).

["ParaNorman Tops Best Animated Film Category; Best Documentary Favorite: Searching for Sugar Man" continues on the next page. See link below.]

'70s rocker Rodriguez Searching for Sugar Man image: Sony Pictures Classics.

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2 Comments to SEARCHING FOR SUGAR MAN Tops Best Documentary, PARANORMAN Tops Best Animated Film

  1. editor

    @Amy Grey

    Thanks for the note.
    In the articles in this "awards season series," we've included only "awards season" wins from critics groups, guilds, and a handful of other voting bodies (National Board of Review, Gotham Awards).

    It's explained here:


    Since the Gotham Award winners had already been announced when we published the piece, we mentioned only those. But we should be adding the Gotham nominees as well when the awards season series is updated.

  2. Dear ALT Guide - Can you please correct THE WAITING ROOM as it has:

    SF (won)
    camden (won)
    It is nominated for two indie spirit awards
    gotham (nominated)
    SF critics (won)

    Thank you so much! Happy Holidays!


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