Independent Film Spirit Awards: 'Brokeback Mountain' Tops

Independent Film Spirit Brokeback MountainIndependent Film Spirit Award winner 'Brokeback Mountain,' with Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal.

Independent Film Spirit Awards 2006: 'Brokeback Mountain' is Best Film

Ang Lee's gay romantic drama and 2006 Academy Award favorite Brokeback Mountain won two top awards – Best Film and Best Director – at the Independent Film Spirit Awards ceremony held earlier today, March 4, '06. (See further below the full list of the Independent Film Spirit Awards' winners and nominees.)

Nominated for his performance as a gay ranch hand, Heath Ledger lost the Best Actor award to Philip Seymour Hoffman, who plays another gay character, author and sometime screenwriter Truman Capote, in Bennett Miller's real-life-inspired drama Capote – which also earned Dan Futterman (Robin Williams and Nathan Lane's son in The Birdcage) the Best Screenplay award.

Continuing with the 2006 Independent Film Spirit Awards' non-heterosexual preferences (and here we are talking about preferences), Felicity Huffman was selected as the year's Best Actress in a U.S.-made independent film for her delightful pre-op transsexual in Transamerica.

'Crash' wins two awards

Paul Haggis' Los Angeles-based, race-obsessed drama Crash, which has been overhyped as a potential upset winner at the 2006 Academy Awards ceremony tomorrow – some people have been struggling awful hard to add suspense to this year's utterly predictable list of Oscar winners* – won every single Independent Film Spirit Award for which it had been nominated.

That makes it a total of a mere two wins: Best First Film and Best Supporting Actor for Matt Dillon, who plays a racist L.A. cop with a past that – sort of like maybe who can tell – explains his bigotry, and who, at one crucial moment, realizes he's not such a bad guy after all.

The recent hype surrounding Crash, which was all but ignored by the Golden Globes while being mostly bypassed by North American film critics, surely didn't hurt the film's chances to take home these two Independent Film Spirit awards. After all, one should take into account the fact that – weeks ago – voting committee members didn't even deem Crash worthy of a Best Film, Best Director, or Best Screenplay nomination.

More Independent Film Spirit winners: Amy Adams, 'Paradise Now'

And here are a couple more 2006 Independent Film Spirit Award winners: Amy Adams was Best Supporting Actress for Junebug, while Hany-Abu Assad's Paradise Now – despite calls for a boycott from those who apparently haven't seen the anti-terrorism film – won the Best Foreign Film award.

* Update: The Crash overhypers turned out to be not such overhypers after all. Crash, not Brokeback Mountain, was the year's Best Picture Academy Award winner.

2006 Independent Film Spirit Awards: Winners and nominees

Best Film
* Brokeback Mountain - Prod.: Diana Ossana and James Schamus.
Capote - Prod.: Caroline Baron, William Vince, Michael Ohoven.
Good Night and Good Luck. - Prod.: Grant Heslov.
The Squid and the Whale - Prod.: Wes Anderson, Peter Newman, Charles Corwin, Clara Markowicz.
The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada - Prod.: Michael Fitzgerald, Tommy Lee Jones, Luc Besson, Pierre-Ange Le Pogan.

Best Foreign Film
The Death of Mr. Lazarescu / Moartea domnului Lazarescu (Romania) - Dir.: Cristi Puiu.
Duck Season / Temporada de patos (Mexico) - Dir.: Fernando Eimbcke.
Head-On / Gegen die Wand (Germany / Turkey) - Dir.: Fatih Akin.
* Paradise Now (Palestine / Netherlands / Germany / France) - Dir.: Hany Abu-Assad.
Tony Takitani (Japan) - Dir.: Jun Ichikawa.

Best Director
* Ang Lee for Brokeback Mountain.
George Clooney for Good Night and Good Luck.
Gregg Araki for Mysterious Skin.
Rodrigo García for Nine Lives.
Noah Baumbach for The Squid and the Whale.

Best Actor
Jeff Daniels for The Squid and the Whale.
* Philip Seymour Hoffman for Capote.
Terrence Howard for Hustle & Flow.
Heath Ledger for Brokeback Mountain.
David Strathairn for Good Night and Good Luck.

Best Actress
* Felicity Huffman for Transamerica.
Dina Korzun for Forty Shades of Blue.
Laura Linney for The Squid and the Whale.
S. Epatha Merkerson for Lackawanna Blues.
Cyndi Williams for Room.

Best Supporting Actress
* Amy Adams for Junebug.
Maggie Gyllenhaal for Happy Endings.
Allison Janney for Our Very Own.
Michelle Williams for Brokeback Mountain.
Robin Wright Penn for Nine Lives.

Best Supporting Actor
Firdous Bamji for The War Within.
* Matt Dillon for Crash.
Jesse Eisenberg for The Squid and the Whale.
Barry Pepper for The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada.
Jeffrey Wright for Broken Flowers.

Best Screenplay
Ayad Akhtar, Joseph Castelo, Tom Glynn for The War Within.
Guillermo Arriaga for The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada.
Noah Baumbach for The Squid and the Whale.
* Dan Futterman for Capote.
Rodrigo García for Nine Lives.

Best First Feature
* Crash - Dir.: Paul Haggis. Prod.: Cathy Schulman, Don Cheadle, Bob Yari, Mark R. Harris, Bobby Moresco, Paul Haggis.
Lackawanna Blues - Dir.: George C. Wolfe. Prod.: Nellie Nugiel.
Me and You and Everyone We Know - Dir.: Miranda July. Prod.: Gina Kwon.
Thumbsucker - Dir.: Mike Mills. Prod.: Anthony Bregman.
and Bob Stephenson.
Transamerica - Dir.: Duncan Tucker. Prod.: Sebastian Dungan, Linda Moran, Rene Bastian.

Best Documentary
* Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room - Dir.: Alex Gibney.
Grizzly Man - Dir.: Werner Herzog.
La Sierra - Dir.: Scott Dalton and Margarita Martinez.
Romántico - Dir.: Mark Becker.
Sir! No Sir! - Dir.: David Zeiger.

Best First Screenplay
Kenneth Hanes for Fixing Frank.
Miranda July for Me and You and Everyone We Know.
Angus MacLachlan for Junebug.
Sabina Murray for The Beautiful Country.
* Duncan Tucker for Transamerica.

Best Cinematography
* Robert Elswit for Good Night and Good Luck.
John Foster for Keane.
Adam Kimmel for Capote.
Chris Menges for The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada.
Harris Savides for Last Days.

John Cassavetes Award (for the best feature made for under $500,000)
Brick - Director / Writer: Rian Johnson. Prod.: Ram Bergman, Mark G. Mathis.
* Conventioneers - Dir.: Mora Stephens. Prod.: Joel Viertel.
Writer: Mora Stephens and Joel Viertel.
Jellysmoke - Director / Writer / Prod.: Mark Banning.
The Puffy Chair - Dir.: Jay Duplass. Prod.: Mark Duplass.
Writers: Mark Duplass and Jay Duplass.
Room Director / Writer: Kyle Henry. Prod.: Jesse Scolaro, Allen Bain, Darren Goldberg.

Truer Than Fiction Award
* Occupation: Dreamland - Garrett Scott and Ian Olds.
Our Brand Is Crisis - Rachel Boynton.
Romántico - Mark Becker.
Twelve Disciples of Nelson Mandela - Thomas Allen Harris.

Someone to Watch Award
* Cavite - Ian Gamazon and Neill Dela Llana.
Police Beat - Robinson Devor.
The Puffy Chair - Jay Duplass.

Producer Award
* Caroline Baron for Capote and Monsoon Wedding.
Ram Bergman for Brick for Conversations with Other Women.
Mike S. Ryan for Junebug and Palindromes


List of 2006 Independent Film Spirit winners and nominees via Film Independent's website.

Image of Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal in Independent Film Spirit Best Picture winner Brokeback Mountain: Focus Features.

Independent Film Spirit Awards: 'Brokeback Mountain' Tops © 2004–2018 Alt Film Guide and/or author(s).
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