Welcome to Film Feeder’s official coverage of the 2013/14 filmFilm-Independent-Spirit-Awards-Logo_jpg_300x267_q100 awards season, and it’s all kicked off with the announcement of the 29th Independent Spirit Awards nominations!

The awards are reserved for the very best in independent filmmaking over the past year as well as rising newcomers within the field, giving awards for Best First Feature, First Screenplay etc as well as usuals like Best Film, Director, Actor and the rest.

With that said, it looks like director Steve McQueen’s hotly-tipped 12 Years A Slave leads the field with seven nominations including Best Film, Best Director, Best Male Lead (Chiwetel Ejiofor), Best Supporting Male (Michael Fassbender), Best Supporting Female (Lupita Nyong’o), Best Screenplay and Best Cinematography.

Following closely behind is Alexander Payne with six nominations for his latest odyssey Nebraska. It will compete against 12 Years A Slave for Best Film, Best Director, Best Male Lead (Bruce Dern), Best Supporting Male (Will Forte) and Best Supporting Female (June Squibb), while also receiving a nomination for Bob Nelson’s debut screenplay in the Best First Screenplay category.

Rounding up the Best Film category are J.C. Chandor’s All Is Lost, nominated for a further three awards including Best Director and Best Actor (Robert Redford); Noah Baumbach’s Frances Ha, which aside from one further Editing nom was otherwise shut out; and the Coen Brothers’ Inside Llewyn Davis, which also scored a Best Male Lead nomination for Oscar Isaac as well as a Cinematography nod.

Also worth mentioning are the three nominations received for Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine, including one for Allen’s screenplay and two for actresses Cate Blanchett and Sally Hawkins (for Best Female Lead and Best Supporting Female respectively).

This year’s recipient of the Robert Altman Award, which honours a film’s director, ensemble cast and casting director, is Jeff Nichols’ Mud starring Matthew McConaughey (himself nominated for Best Male Lead for separate film Dallas Buyers Club) and Reese Witherspoon. Nichols also received a nomination for Best Director, but gathered no further nominations elsewhere.

The awards are a significant placement within the awards season, being amongst the first to signal the main frontrunners for bigger prizes like Oscar or BAFTA. This year, 12 Years A Slave has shown overwhelming support at film festivals and by film critics, so it is a safe bet for it to score well here. However, recent years have proven to be a commiseration prize to whatever film does NOT go on to win the Best Picture Oscar. Last year’s Silver Linings Playbook was a prime example of this, as were Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan, Lee Daniels’ Precious: Based on the Novel “Push” by Sapphire, Ang Lee’s Brokeback Mountain over previous years. What this year has in store for its contenders is yet to be revealed, though it will be a while before we find out the answers.

The 29th Independent Spirit Awards will be held on March 1st 2014, keeping with tradition of it being held the evening before the Academy Awards.

A full list of nominations can be found below:

Best Feature

All is Lost
Frances Ha
Inside Llewyn Davis
Nebraska
12 Years a Slave
 

Best Director

J.C. Chandor, “All is Lost”
Jeff  Nichols, “Mud”
Alexander Payne, “Nebraska”
Steve McQueen, “12 Years a  Slave”
Shane Carruth, “Upstream Color”
 

Best First Feature

Blue Caprice
Concussion
Fruitvale Station
Una Noche
Wadjda
 

Best Screenplay

Before Midnight
Blue Jasmine
Enough Said
The Spectacular Now
12 Years a Slave
 

Best First Screenplay

Afternoon Delight
Don Jon
In a World
The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pet
 Nebraska
 

Best Female Lead

Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”
Julie Delpy, “Before Midnight”
Gaby Hoffman, “Crystal Fairy”
Brie Larson, “Short Term 12”
Shailene Woodley, “The Spectacular Now”
 

Best Male Lead

Bruce Dern, “Nebraska”
Oscar Isaac, “Inside Llewyn Davis”
Michael B. Jordan, “Fruitvale Station”
Matthew McConaughey, “Dallas Buyers Club”
Robert Redford, “All is Lost”
Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave”
 

Best Supporting Female

Melonie Diaz, “Fruitvale  Station”
Sally Hawkins, “Blue Jasmine”
Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a  Slave”
Yolonda Ross, “Go For Sisters”
June Squibb, “Nebraska”
 

Best Supporting Male

Michael Fassbender, “12 Years a  Slave”
Will Forte, “Nebraska”
James Gandolfini, “Enough Said”
Jared  Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club”
Keith Stanfield, “Short Term 12”
 

Best Cinematography

All is Lost
Computer Chess
Inside Llewyn Davis
Spring Breakers
12 Years a  Slave
 

Best Editing

Frances Ha
Museum Hours
Short  Term 12
Una Noche
Upstream Color
 

Best Documentary

The Act of Killing
After  Tiller
Gideon’s Army
The Square
20 Feet from Stardom
 

Best International Film

Blue is the Warmest Color
Gloria
The Great Beauty
The Hunt
A Touch of Sin
 

Robert Altman Award

Mud
 

John Cassavetes Award

Computer Chess
Crystal Fairy
Museum Hours
Pit Stop
This is Martin Bonner
 

Piaget Producers Award

Toby Halbrooks & James M.  Johnston
Jacob Jaffke
Andrea Roa
Frederick Thornton
 

Someone to Watch Award

Aaron Douglas Johnston, “My  Sisters Quinceañera”
Shaka King, “Newlyweeds”
Madeline Olnek, “The Foxy  Merkins”
 

Truer Than Fiction Award

Kalyanee Mam, “A River Changes Course”
Jason Osder, “Let the Fire Burn”
Stephanie Spray & Pacho Valez, “Manakamana”
 

Any thoughts as to who you think might win? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter or via any of the other social media tags below!

Next week, the National Board of Review announces their annual cream of the crop, as do the New York Film Critics Circle and the Los Angeles Film Critics Circle; and the British Independent Film Awards reveal their winners also. Stay tuned for another exciting instalment of AWARDS FEEDER!