Indie Spirit Awards preview: ‘The Lost Daughter’ will win 3, including Best Feature

The 37th Annual Indie Spirit Awards will be held on Sunday, March 6, to honor the best achievements in American films made for under $20 million. Nominations were decided by film professionals, programmers, and critics, while winners are decided by the entire Film Independent membership. The organization includes industry insiders but also any indie movie fans who pay for membership starting at $95 per year. So who’s out front to win?

The Lost Daughter” is the favorite for Best Feature, according to the combined predictions of Gold Derby users who have placed their bets here in our predictions center. It’s also the front-runner for Best Director and Best Screenplay, both of which would go to first-time filmmaker Maggie Gyllenhaal, who has contended here twice for acting: Best Female Lead for “Secretary” (2002) and Best Supporting Female for “Happy Endings” (2005).

Elsewhere, we’re expecting voters to spread the wealth. “Zola,” the most nominated film with seven bids, is expected to claim Best Female Lead (Taylour Paige) and Best Editing. “Passing” is predicted to take Best Supporting Female (Ruth Negga) and Best Cinematography. Rounding out the acting categories, Simon Rex (“Red Rocket”) gets best odds for Best Male Lead, while Troy Kotsur (“CODA”) is the favorite for Best Supporting Male.

Kotsur is one of only two acting nominees here also in contention at the Oscars, along with supporting actress Jessie Buckley from “The Lost Daughter.” Often the Spirit Awards are a preview of the Oscars, especially in recent years as the Oscars have more regularly honored lower-budget films like “Birdman,” “Spotlight,” “Moonlight,” and “Nomadland,” all of which won at both awards. But this year the nominating committee opted mostly for films outside of the Oscar conversation. For only the second time in the last 13 years, none of the Spirit nominees for Best Feature overlap with the Oscar nominees for Best Picture. “The Lost Daughter” is the only Best Feature nominee up for any Oscars.

Another difference this year is the timing. The awards have traditionally been held on the weekend of the Oscars. For last year’s unconventional COVID awards season, the Spirits were held three days ahead of the Oscars. But this time the Spirits are three whole weeks before the Oscars, giving them the chance to chime in before the academy votes for their winners starting on March 17, though that would only help the Spirit nominees who overlap with the Oscars, like Kotsur, Buckley, and Gyllenhaal’s screenplay, plus the international and documentary films both awards have in common. Who do you think will win at this weekend’s event?

Be sure to make your Indie Spirit predictions so that Hollywood studio executives and top name stars can see how their films are faring in our odds. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before winners are announced. And join in the fierce debate over the Spirit Awards taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our film forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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