2014 Möet British Independent Film Awards Winners

The 17th Annual Möet British Independent Film Awards were handed out today at the Old Billingsgate in London, hosted by actor, writer, and comedian Simon Bird, star of The Inbetweeners. BIFA was created in 1998 by Raindance founder Elliot Grove to celebrate merit and achievement in independently funded British movies, to honor new talent, and to promote British films and filmmaking to a wider public. The closest equivalent in America would be the Film Independent Spirit Awards, which announced their nominations a couple of weeks ago.

Although "British," the BIFAs have been rich in honors for some of my film festival favorites over the past several years. 2009 SXSW Film Festival favorite Moon won Best British Independent Film that year. In 2012 Berberian Sound Studio, one of my faves from Fantastic Fest, won four of the seven awards it was nominated for (including one category in which it was competing with itself), including Best Director (Peter Strickland), Actor (Toby Jones), Achievement in Production, and Technical Achievement (Sound Design by Joakim Sundström and Stevie Haywood AMPS IPS).

Top honors last year went to Sean Ellis' Metro Manila, which picked up three awards including Best British Independent Film, Best Director, and Best Achievement in Production. I was especially pleased at this as Sean's debut feature, Cashback, was my #1 Top Pick from my very first Toronto International Film Festival in 2006. Then I traveled to the Sundance Film Festival in 2008 to met Ellis for the premiere of his followup, The Broken. That film made my Sundance 2008 Top Picks. Metro Manila was his third feature. David Mackenzie's prison drama Starred Up was one of my favorites from Toronto in 2013 and, although it led the pack with eight nominations, it only took home the award for Best Supporting Actor (Ben Mendelsohn). Other previous festival favorites of mine winning awards last year included James McAvoy as Best Actor for Filth and Imogen Poots as Best Supporting Actress for The Look of Love, whose World Premiere I attended at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.

Top honors this year went to Pride, with three awards including Best British Independent Film, Best Supporting Actress (Imelda Staunton), and Best Supporting Actor (Andrew Scott). The 2014 Palm Beach International Film Festival's Opening Night Film, Belle, was honored with a Best Actress Award to Gugu Mbatha-Raw. Among my other festival favorites, Frank (2014 Los Angeles Film Festival) picked up two including Best Screenplay (Jon Ronson and Peter Straughan) and Best Technical Achievement (Stephen Rennicks for Music). The film that may turn out to be my #1 movie of 2014, Boyhood, won Best International Independent Film. This came on the heels of 12 other wins today, including Best Picture, from the New York Film Critics Online, Boston Society of Film Critics, and Los Angeles Film Critics Association.    

Here are the winners of the 2014 Moët British Independent Film Awards:

BEST BRITISH INDEPENDENT FILM
Pride

BEST ACTOR
Brendan Gleeson, Calvary

BEST DIRECTOR
Yann Demange, ’71

BEST ACTRESS
Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Belle

BEST ACHIEVEMENT IN PRODUCTION
The Goob, prods: Michael Elliott Lee Groombridge

BEST SCREENPLAY
Jon Ronson, Peter Straughan, Frank

THE DOUGLAS HICKOX AWARD [BEST DEBUT DIRECTOR]
Iain Forsyth, Jane Pollard, 20,000 Days On Earth

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Imelda Staunton, Pride

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Andrew Scott, Pride

MOST PROMISING NEWCOMER
Sameena Jabeen Ahmed, Catch Me Daddy

BEST TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT
Stephen Rennicks – Music, Frank

BEST DOCUMENTARY
Next Goal Wins, dirs: Mike Brett, Steve Jamison

BEST INTERNATIONAL INDEPENDENT FILM
Boyhood

THE RAINDANCE AWARD
Luna

BEST BRITISH SHORT
The Kármán Line



Author

Larry Richman

Larry Richman

For 20 years I was a professional in the entertainment industry, from commercial broadcast radio in America's fourth largest market to band management to record production. But my passion is independent film, and I spend much of the year traveling to film festivals to see indies and meet the actors, directors, and others responsible for creating them. I'm a writer, photographer, and videographer, currently serving as Senior Vice President for Media & Technology and Public Relations at PROnetworks as well as Editor at Larry411.com

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