Film Independent’s Spirit Awards (formerly known as the Independent Spirit Awards) were founded in 1984 and are awards dedicated to independent filmmakers. Film Independent is the non-profit arts organization that produces the Spirit Awards and also the Los Angeles Film Festival.
The 2015/30th Annual Film Independent Spirit Awards winners were announced at the Spirit Awards on Saturday, February 21, 2015. Winners of the Spirit Awards Filmmaker Grants were highlighted during the awards ceremony and were announced at the Film Independent Spirit Awards Filmmaker Grants and Nominee Brunch on Saturday, January 10, 2015, at BOA Steakhouse in West Hollywood.
2015 / 30th Film Independent Spirit Award winner:
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
Producers: Alejandro G. Iñárritu, John Lesher, Arnon Milchan, James W. Skotchdopole
Richard Linklater: Boyhood
Dan Gilroy: Nightcrawler
BEST FIRST FEATURE (Award given to the director and producer)
Director: Dan Gilroy
Producers: Jennifer Fox, Tony Gilroy, Jake Gyllenhaal, David Lancaster, Michel Litvak
BEST FIRST SCREENPLAY
Justin Simien: Dear White People
JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD – Given to the best feature made for under $500,000. Award given to the writer, director and producer. Executive Producers are not awarded.
Writers/Directors: Aaron Katz & Martha Stephens
Producers: Christina Jennings, Mynette Louie, Sara Murphy
BEST FEMALE LEAD
Julianne Moore: Still Alice
BEST MALE LEAD
Michael Keaton: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
BEST SUPPORTING FEMALE
Patricia Arquette: Boyhood
BEST SUPPORTING MALE
J.K. Simmons: Whiplash
Emmanuel Lubezki: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
Tom Cross: Whiplash
BEST DOCUMENTARY (Award given to the director and producer)
Director/Producer: Laura Poitras
Producers: Mathilde Bonnefoy, Dirk Wilutzky
BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM (Award given to the director)
Director: Pawel Pawlikowski
ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD – (Given to one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast)
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
Casting Director: Cassandra Kulukundis
Ensemble Cast: Josh Brolin, Martin Donovan, Jena Malone, Joanna Newsom, Joaquin Phoenix, Eric Roberts, Maya Rudolph, Martin Short, Serena Scott Thomas, Benicio Del Toro, Katherine Waterston, Michael Kenneth Williams, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon
SPECIAL DISTINCTION AWARD
Director/Producer: Bennett Miller
Producers: Anthony Bregman, Megan Ellison, Jon Kilik
Writers: E. Max Frye, Dan Futterman
Actors: Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo, Channing Tatum
18th ANNUAL PIAGET PRODUCERS AWARD – The 18th annual Producers Award, sponsored by Piaget, honors emerging producers who, despite highly limited resources, demonstrate the creativity, tenacity and vision required to produce quality, independent films. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by Piaget.
21st ANNUAL KIEHL’S SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD – The 21st annual Someone to Watch Award, sponsored by Kiehl’s Since 1851, recognizes a talented filmmaker of singular vision who has not yet received appropriate recognition. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by Kiehl’s Since 1851.
Directors: Rania Attieh & Daniel Garcia
20th ANNUAL LENSCRAFTERS TRUER THAN FICTION AWARD – The 20th annual Truer Than Fiction Award, sponsored by LensCrafters is presented to an emerging director of non-fiction features who has not yet received significant recognition. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by LensCrafters.
The Kill Team
Director: Dan Krauss