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IFP's Gotham Awards: Half Nelson got three

At an event tonight set at New York City’s PIER SIXTY at Chelsea Piers, the winners were announced for IFP’s 16th Annual GOTHAM AWARDS hosted by comedian David Cross. The Gotham Awards will be broadcast on NYC TV (Channel 25) on December 6, 2006 from 9-11pm EST, and will be presented with exclusive webcast coverage via IFILM.COM beginning on December 4, 2006.

The annual Gotham Awards, presented by IFP, celebrate the authentic voices behind and in front of the camera in films made this year. By recognizing that the best films come from a place that is more firmly rooted in the grasp of filmmakers – and not made by committee – the Gotham Awards salute the innovative American films and filmmakers whose passion and vision make their way on to the screen year after year. A total of 12 awards were presented this evening, including six Gotham Awards Tributes for career achievement.

Of the six competitive awards, winners were selected by separate panels of juries. Nominees were inclusive of micro-budgeted independents as well as studio financed films by directors with distinctive personal visions.

“With only six competitive awards, each award carries a significant amount of prominence,” says Michelle Byrd, IFP Executive Director. “Our juries had amazingly passionate conversations and I think their selection reflects a diverse range of talent and films with strong points of view.”

The six competitive awards honoring this year’s most innovative films and talent were presented in the categories of Best Feature, Best Documentary, Breakthrough Director, Breakthrough Actor, Best Ensemble Cast, and the Gothams’ trademark honor, Best Film Not Playing At A Theater Near You. The juries convened to determine the winners were comprised of actors, directors, producers and others involved directly in making films.

Winners of IFP’s 16TH ANNUAL GOTHAM AWARDS

Best Feature presented by Isabella Rossellini
Half Nelson

Ryan Fleck, director; Jamie Patricof, Alex Orlovsky, Lynette Howell, Anna Boden, Rosanne Korenberg, producers (ThinkFilm)



The 2006 Gotham Awards Best Feature Jury included: actors Sarita Choudhury and Willem Dafoe, casting director Avy Kaufman, producer Jon Kilik and director Bennett Miller.



Best Documentary presented by Rosie Perez and Chazz Palminteri



Iraq in Fragments

James Longley, director; James Longley, John Sinno, producers (Typecast Releasing in association with HBO Documentary Films)



The 2006 Gotham Awards Best Documentary Jury included: director of photography Maryse Alberti, directors Fenton Bailey, Eugene Jarecki and Penelope Spheeris, and editor/producer Samuel Pollard.



Breakthrough Director Award presented by Jennifer Jason Leigh



Ryan Fleck for Half Nelson (ThinkFilm)



The 2006 Gotham Awards Breakthrough Director jury included: directors Atom Egoyan and Paul Schrader, actors and Chiwetel Ejiofer and Annabella Sciorra and actor/director Stanley Tucci.



Breakthrough Actor Award presented by Billy Baldwin



Shareeka Epps in Half Nelson (ThinkFilm) AND Rinko Kikuchi in Babel (Paramount Vantage)



The Jury for the 2006 Gotham Awards Breakthrough Actor Award included:

actors Ellen Barkin, Jennifer Jason Leigh and, actor/directors Jon Favreau and Liev Schreiber, director John Singleton and casting director Cindy Tolan.



Best Ensemble Cast Award presented by Sarita Choudhury and Annabella Sciorra



Babel

Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Gael Garcia Bernal, Kôji Yakusho, Adriana Barraza, Rinko Kikuchi, Said Tarchani, Boubker Ait El Caid (Paramount Vantage)



The 2006 Gotham Awards Best Ensemble Cast Jury included: directors Miguel Arteta and Neil LaBute, actors Billy Baldwin and S Epatha Merkerson and casting director Kerry Barden.



Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You Award presented by Parker Posey and Alessandro Nivola



Choking Man

Steve Barron, director; Joshua Zeman, Zachary Mortensen, producers





The editors of Filmmaker magazine selected the winner of the Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You Award.



In addition to the competitive awards, the Gotham Awards presented Tributes to:



Gotham Awards Tribute to: Kate Winslet, presented by Todd Field

Gotham Awards Tribute to: Edward Norton, presented by John Curran

Gotham Awards Tribute to: Todd Wagner and Mark Cuban, presented by Steven Soderbergh

Gotham Awards Tribute to: Ellen Kuras, presented by Sam Mendes

Gotham Awards Filmmakers Tribute to: Alfonso Cuarón, Guillermo del Toro and Alejandro González Iñárritu, presented by Mira Sorvino

Gotham Awards Humanitarian Tribute to: Tim Robbins, presented by Sean Penn


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(Filmfestivals.com)

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