Ryan Fleck's inner citydrama Half Nelson dominated IFP's16th Annual Gotham Awards last night [Nov 29].
The picture won bestfeature, breakthrough director for Fleck and breakthrough actor for ShareekaEpps, who tied with Babel's RinkoKikuchi. Half Nelson was releasedearlier this year in North American through THINKFilm.
Alejandro GonzalezInarritu's Babel also won bestensemble acting honours for Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Gael Garcia Bernal, KojiYakusho, Adriana Barraza, Rinko Kikuchi, Said Tarchani, and Boubker Ait ElCaid.
James Longley's Iraq InFragments won best documentary, and ChokingMan directed by Steve Barron won theBest Film Not Playing At A Theater Near You Award. Iraq In Fragments is a Typecast Releasing in association with HBODocumentary Films.
"With only sixcompetitive awards, each award carries a significant amount ofprominence," IFP executive director Michelle Byrd said. "Our jurieshad amazingly passionate conversations and I think their selection reflects adiverse range of talent and films with strong points of view."
As previously announced,Gotham Awards Tribute went to Kate Winslet, Edward Norton, Todd Wagner and MarkCuban, Ellen Kuras, Alfonso Cuaron, Guillermo del Toro and Alejandro GonzalezInarritu, and Tim Robbins.
16th Annual Gotham Awardswinners:
Best feature: Half Nelson (THINKFilm)
Dir: Ryan Fleck; Prdrs: Jamie Patricof, Alex Orlovsky, Lynette Howell, AnnaBoden, and Rosanne Korenberg
Best documentary: Iraq InFragments (Typecast Releasing inassociation with HBO Documentary Films)
Dir: James Longley; Prdrs: James Longley and John Sinno
Breakthrough Director Award:Ryan Fleck for Half Nelson
Breakthrough Actor Award:Shareeka Epps for Half Nelson andRinko Kikuchi for Babel (ParamountVantage)
Best Ensemble Cast Award: Babel(Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, GaelGarcia Bernal, Koji Yakusho, Adriana Barraza, Rinko Kikuchi, Said Tarchani, andBoubker Ait El Caid)
Best Film Not Playing At ATheater Near You Award: Choking Man
Dir: Steve Barron; Prdrs: Joshua Zeman and Zachary Mortensen