LONDON -- David Mackenzie's visceral and violent prison drama Starred Up leads the pack at this year's 16th annual British Independent Film Awards with eight nominations.
Mackenzie is in the race for best director and his movie is nominated for the event's top prize of best British independent film, while the film's front-of-camera talent scored a best actor nomination for Jack O’Connell and best supporting actor nominations for Rupert Friend and Ben Mendelsohn.
The nominations for the 16thannual Moet British Independent Film Awards were announced today at St. Martins Lane in London by actor, BIFA patron and previous winner Ewan McGregor. The indie awards are considered the most prestigious U.K. film honors behind the BAFTAs.
The Selfish Giant picked up seven nominations and Filth, Metro Manila and Le Week-end all picked up five apiece.
To win the evening's top prize of best British film, Starred Up will have to edge out Metro Manila, Philomena, The Selfish Giant and Le Week-end.
And in the best director category, Mackenzie is up against Jon S Baird (Filth), Clio Barnard (The Selfish Giant), Sean Ellis (Metro Manila) and Jonathan Glazer (Under the Skin).
O’Connell is challenged in the best actor category by Jim Broadbent for Le Week-end, Steve Coogan for Philomena, Tom Hardy for Locke and James McAvoy for Filth.
Nominations for best actress go to Judi Dench for Philomena, Lindsay Duncan for Le Week-end, Scarlett Johansson for Under The Skin, Felicity Jones for The Invisible Woman and Saoirse Ronan for How I Live Now.
Joining Starred Up's Friend and Mendelsohn in the race for the best supporting actor prize is John Arcilla for Metro Manila, Jeff Goldblum for Le Week-end and Eddie Marsan for Filth.
Siobhan Finneran for The Selfish Giant, Shirley Henderson for Filth, Imogen Poots for The Look of Love, Kristin Scott Thomas for The Invisible Woman and Mia Wasikowska for The Double are all nominated for the best supporting actress award.
Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine and Noah Baumbach's Frances Ha are carrying U.S. hopes in the best international independent film category at the awards, both competing with Abdellatif Kechiche's Blue Is The Warmest Color, Paolo Sorrentino's The Great Beauty and Wadjda, directed by Haifaa Al-Mansour.
The BIFAs also include the Douglas Hickox Award for "dynamic debuts" by directors and this year the nod will go to either Charlie Cattrall for Titus, Tina Gharavi for I Am Nasrine, Jeremy Lovering for In Fear, Omid Nooshin for Last Passenger or Paul Wright for For Those in Peril.
The pre-selection committee of 70 members viewed over 200 films from which the nominations were selected on by ballot.
The winners will be decided by an independent jury, which this year is chaired by director Penny Woolcock and includes actresses Antonia Campbell-Hughes, MyAnna Buring and Natascha McElhone, alongside actor Art Malik and James Floyd and directors Ate de Jong, Bart Layton, Julien Temple and Sally El Hosaini, as well as producers Liza Marshall, Steve Hamilton Shaw and Pippa Harris, dialect coach Jill McCullough, musician Roland Gift and costume designer Sandy Powell.
BIFA joint directors Johanna von Fischer and Tessa Collinson said 2013 stood out as an "extremely competitive year" for the nominees.
"The variety of films submitted reached a new level this year with films covering a range of subject matters and genres that perfectly showcase the diversity and creativity at work in British independent filmmaking today," the pair said.
This year's winners will be the first to receive the newly launched trophy designed by Fredrikson Stallard, created by Swarovski.
Ben Roberts, director of the British Film Institute film fund whose cashpool contributed to the development and production of a slew of nominees, including Under The Skin, Starred Up and The Selfish Giant said: "Where other awards sometimes fear to tread, the BIFAs puts the wild creativity of British independent filmmaking front and center."
The nods will be dished out at a gala on the evening of Dec. 8, hosted by actor and BIFA patron James Nesbitt.
The full list of nominees is below.
BEST BRITISH INDEPENDENT FILM
Sponsored by Moët & Chandon
The Selfish Giant
Sponsored by AllCity & Intermission
Jon S Baird – Filth
Clio Barnard – The Selfish Giant
Sean Ellis – Metro Manila
JonathanGlazer – Under the Skin
David Mackenzie – Starred Up
THE DOUGLAS HICKOX AWARD [BEST DEBUT DIRECTOR]
Sponsored by 3 Mills Studios
Charlie Cattrall – Titus
Tina Gharavi – I Am Nasrine
Jeremy Lovering – In Fear
Omid Nooshin – Last Passenger
Paul Wright – For Those in Peril
Jonathan Asser – Starred Up
Clio Barnard – The Selfish Giant
Steven Knight – Locke
Hanif Kureishi – Le Week-end
Jeff Pope, Steve Coogan – Philomena
Sponsored by M.A.C Cosmetics
Judi Dench – Philomena
Lindsay Duncan – Le Week-end
Scarlett Johansson – Under the Skin
Felicity Jones – The Invisible Woman
Saoirse Ronan – How I Live Now
Sponsored by BBC Films
Jim Broadbent – Le Week-end
Steve Coogan – Philomena
Tom Hardy – Locke
Jack O'Connell – Starred Up
James McAvoy – Filth
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Siobhan Finneran – The Selfish Giant
Shirley Henderson – Filth
Imogen Poots – The Look Of Love
Kristin Scott Thomas – The Invisible Woman
Mia Wasikowska – The Double
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Sponsored by Sanderson & St Martins Lane
John Arcilla – Metro Manila
Rupert Friend – Starred Up
Jeff Goldblum – Le Week-end
Eddie Marsan – Filth
Ben Mendelsohn – Starred Up
MOST PROMISING NEWCOMER
Sponsored by Studiocanal
Harley Bird – How I Live Now
Conner Chapman/ Shaun Thomas – The Selfish Giant
Caity Lotz – The Machine
Jake Macapagal – Metro Manila
Chloe Pirrie – Shell
BEST ACHIEVEMENT IN PRODUCTION
Sponsored by Company3
A Field in England
The Selfish Giant
BEST TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT
Sponsored by LightBrigade Media
Shaheen Baig – Casting – Starred Up
Johnnie Burn – Sound Design – Under the Skin
Amy Hubbard – Casting – The Selfish Giant
Mica Levi – Music – Under the Skin
Justine Wright – Editing – Locke
Pussy Riot - A Punk Prayer
The Great Hip Hop Hoax
The Moo Man
The Spirit of '45
The Stone Roses: Made of Stone
BEST BRITISH SHORT
Supported by BFI NET.WORK
BEST INTERNATIONAL INDEPENDENT FILM
Blue is the Warmest Colour
The Great Beauty
THE RAINDANCE AWARD
Sponsored by Wentworth Media and Arts
Everyone’s Going to Die
THE RICHARD HARRIS AWARD(for outstanding contribution by an actor to British Film)
THE VARIETY AWARD
THE SPECIAL JURY PRIZE