Founded in 1935, the New York Film Critics Circle is, according to their website, “an organization of film reviewers from New York-based publications that exists to honor excellence in U.S. and world cinema.” Members are critics from daily newspapers, weekly newspapers, magazines, and online general-interest publications (that meet certain qualifications).
Every year in December, Circle members meet in New York to vote on awards for the year's films. Apparently, they moved things up this year to have more clout in the awards conversation. Will they? Well, The Artist is a black and white silent movie, which may get Oscar nominations, but will critical acclaim give it a best picture win? I have not seen The Artist, but I'd be super surprised if it won best picture.
Here's the complete list of the 2011 winners:
Best Picture - The Artist
Best Director - Michel Hazanavicius for The Artist
Best Screenplay - Steven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin for Moneyball
Best Actress - Meryl Streep for The Iron Lady
Best Actor - Brad Pitt for Moneyball, The Tree of Life
Best Supporting Actress - Jessica Chastain for The Tree of Life, The Help, Take Shelter
Best Supporting Actor - Albert Brooks for Drive
Best Cinematographer - Emmanuel Lubezki for The Tree of Life
Best Non-Fiction Film (Documentary) - Cave of Forgotten Dreams
Best Foreign Film - A Separation
Best First Film - J.C. Chandor for Margin Call
Special Award -Raoul Ruiz