Indie Outlook Picks the 2021 Nominees

My annual article selecting the films and artists I’d love to see nominated during this year’s awards season further affirms why my Best of 2021 list was alphabetized. There were so many different varieties of greatness represented both in theaters and on streaming platforms this year that it proved impossible to find a clear front-runner. Six of my favorite films from 2021 received no less than seven nominations apiece: Derek DelGaudio’s transcendent exploration of identity, “In & Of Itself,” directed by Frank Oz; Paul Thomas Anderson’s endearing coming-of-age comedy, “Licorice Pizza”; Fran Kranz’s acting masterclass, “Mass”; Jane Campion’s haunting western, “The Power of the Dog”; Jasmila Žbanić’s shattering wartime drama, “Quo Vadis, Aida?”; and Emma Seligman’s marvelous portrait of social anxiety, “Shiva Baby.” Two surefire contenders in this year’s Best Foreign Film race each received five nominations: Nathalie Álvarez Mesén’s breathtaking debut feature, “Clara Sola,” and Ryûsuke Hamaguchi’s life-affirming epic, “Drive My Car.”

There were so many extraordinary cinematic achievements that emerged in the form of miniseries this year that I had to give them their own category. The sheer number of great breakthrough performances in 2021 was so vast that I expanded their category to ten nominees, while six performers were included in the Best Young Actor category. Concluding the list are Eleven Special Mentions, featuring my picks for such honors as Best Scene-Stealer, Best Song Cover and Best Use of Animation.

Before I reveal the nominees, I’d like to give a shout-out to the remarkable identical twin journalists Hannah and Cailin Loesch, who have been conducting insightful interviews over the past decade, whether it be a deep-dive conversation or a brief interaction on the red carpet. Their previous subjects have included LGBTQ+ advocate Jazz Jennings, “Eighth Grade” star Elsie Fisher and “Paradise Lost” co-director Joe Berlinger, so I was immensely honored when they invited me to be a guest on their web show, “Double Talk,” this past April. We spoke about the uncertain state of pandemic-era cinema, the audacious projects made possible by streaming services (including Netflix’s “Maniac,” where Hannah and Cailin acted opposite Sally Field) and why “Schitt’s Creek” was the definitive sitcom of 2020 (not to mention a 21st century “Groundhog Day,” thanks in part to Chris Elliott, Robin Duke and the spirit of Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara’s “SCTV” co-star, Harold Ramis). You can watch the full episode below…

And now, the nominees…

BEST PICTURE

In & Of Itself

Licorice Pizza

Mass

The Power of the Dog

Shiva Baby

BEST DOCUMENTARY

In the Same Breath

North by Current

Procession

Street Gang: How We Got to Sesame Street

Torn

BEST FOREIGN FILM

Clara Sola

Drive My Car

Petite Maman

Quo Vadis, Aida?

Titane

BEST SHORT FILM

Fletcher

The Human Voice

Hush

The Letter Room

Monkey Bars

BEST MINISERIES

The Beatles: Get Back

Maid

Mare of Easttown

Midnight Mass

The Underground Railroad

BEST DIRECTOR

Paul Thomas Anderson, “Licorice Pizza”

Fran Kranz, “Mass”

Frank Oz, “In & Of Itself”

Emma Seligman, “Shiva Baby”

Jasmila Žbanić, “Quo Vadis, Aida?”

BEST ACTOR

Benedict Cumberbatch, “The Power of the Dog”

Oscar Isaac, “The Card Counter”

Hidetoshi Nishijima, “Drive My Car”

Will Smith, “King Richard”

Lakeith Stanfield, “Judas and the Black Messiah”

BEST ACTRESS

Jessica Barden, “Pink Skies Ahead”

Jasna Đuričić, “Quo Vadis, Aida?”

Isabelle Fuhrman, “The Novice”

Emilia Jones, “CODA”

Thomasin McKenzie, “Last Night in Soho”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Reed Birney, “Mass”

Jason Isaacs, “Mass”

Troy Kotsur, “CODA”

Masaki Okada, “Drive My Car”

Kodi Smit-McPhee, “The Power of the Dog”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Jessie Buckley, “The Lost Daughter”

Kirsten Dunst, “The Power of the Dog”

Ann Dowd, “Mass”

Shira Haas, “Asia”

Martha Plimpton, “Mass”

BEST BREAKTHROUGH ACTOR

Wendy Chinchilla Araya, “Clara Sola”

Nell Barlow, “Sweetheart”

Jessica Barr, “Sophie Jones”

Alana Haim, “Licorice Pizza”

Cooper Hoffman, “Licorice Pizza”

Yoo-rim Park, “Drive My Car”

Rachel Sennott, “Shiva Baby”

Suzanna Son, “Red Rocket”

Micaela Wittman, “Clairevoyant”

Rachel Zegler, “West Side Story”

BEST YOUNG ACTOR

Gemma Brooke Allen, “Mixtape”

Ana Julia Porras Espinoza, “Clara Sola”

Kiawentiio, “Beans”

Devyn McDowell, “Annette”

Gabrielle Sanz, “Petite Maman”

Saniyya Sidney, “King Richard”

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Paul Thomas Anderson, “Licorice Pizza”

Rose Glass, “Saint Maud”

Fran Kranz, “Mass”

Nathalie Álvarez Mesén & Maria Camila Arias, “Clara Sola”

Céline Sciamma, “Petite Maman”

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

Jane Campion, “The Power of the Dog”

Derek DelGaudio, “In & Of Itself”

Ryûsuke Hamaguchi & Takamasa Oe, “Drive My Car”

Emma Seligman, “Shiva Baby”

Jasmila Žbanić, “Quo Vadis, Aida?”

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

Caroline Champetier, “Annette”

Elisha Christian, “The Voyeurs”

Christine A. Maier, “Quo Vadis, Aida?”

Andrew Droz Palermo, “The Green Knight”

Shaheen Seth, “Birds of Paradise”

BEST EDITING

Michael Robinson Fleming, “In & Of Itself”

Jaroslaw Kaminski, “Quo Vadis, Aida?”

Angelo Madsen Minax, “North by Current”

Hanna Park, “Shiva Baby”

Mark Towns, “Saint Maud”

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Jenny Beavan, “Cruella”

Mark Bridges, “Licorice Pizza”

Milena Canonero, “The French Dispatch”

Odile Dicks-Mireaux, “Last Night in Soho”

Marci Rodgers, “Passing”

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

David Gropman, “The Humans”

Sam Licenco, “Judas and the Black Messiah”

Florencia Martin, “Licorice Pizza”

Hannes Salat, “Quo Vadis, Aida?”

Adam Stockhausen, “The French Dispatch”

BEST SCORE

Electric Youth and Pilotpriest, “Come True”

Jonny Greenwood, “The Power of the Dog”

Daniel Hart, “The Green Knight”

Ariel Marx, “Shiva Baby”

Mark Mothersbaugh, “In & Of Itself”

BEST SOUND

In & Of Itself

The Novice

The Power of the Dog

Shiva Baby

The Tragedy of Macbeth

BEST MAKEUP

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie

The Green Knight

Nightmare Alley

Titane

The Tragedy of Macbeth

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

Clara Sola

Ghostbusters: Afterlife

The Matrix Resurrections

Saint Maud

Titane

Eleven Special Mentions

BEST SONG

“So May We Start” from “Annette”

BEST SONG COVER

“Bye Bye Bye” sung by Suzanna Son in “Red Rocket”

BEST SCENE-STEALER

Kathryn Hunter, “The Tragedy of Macbeth”

BEST ONSCREEN COUPLE

Virginie Efira & Daphné Patakia, “Benedetta”

BEST NARRATION

Sigrid Harmon & Angelo Madsen Minax, “North by Current”

BEST USE OF ANIMATION

Roy’s World: Barry Gifford’s Chicago

BEST FINAL BOW

Diana Rigg, “Last Night in Soho”

BEST FINAL LINE

Nightmare Alley

BEST TRANSCENDENT ACHIEVEMENT IN STORYTELLING

Derek DelGaudio, “In & Of Itself”

WORST FILM OF THE YEAR

Home Sweet Home Alone

WORST COMMERCIAL FOR BROADWAY

Diana: The Musical

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s