2015 Spirit Awards Winners: ‘Birdman’ Flies Away with the Top Honor

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2015 Spirit Awards Winners - Birdman Flies High

Michael Keaton as “Riggan” in BIRDMAN. (Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Birdman soared at the 2015 Film Independent Spirit Awards, earning the Best Feature, Best Male Lead (Michael Keaton), and Best Cinematography awards during the star-studded event held on Saturday, February 21st. The Spirit Awards recognize the best in independent films and are always held the day before the Oscars. The Spirit Awards ceremony is much more casual than the Academy Awards and usually takes place in a tent on the beach in Santa Monica.

This year’s ceremony was hosted by Kristen Bell and Fred Armisen.

Independent Spirit Awards Winners:


Best Feature: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
Producers: Alejandro G. Iñárritu, John Lesher, Arnon Milchan, James W. Skotchdopole

Best Director: Richard Linklater, Boyhood (IFC Films)

Best Screenplay: Dan Gilroy, Nightcrawler (Open Road Films)

Best First Feature: Nightcrawler (Open Road Films)
Director: Dan Gilroy, Producers: Jennifer Fox, Tony Gilroy, Jake Gyllenhaal, David Lancaster, Michel Litvak

Best First Screenplay: Justin Simien, Dear White People (Roadside Attractions/ Lionsgate)

John Cassavetes Award (For best feature made under $500,000): Land Ho! (Sony Pictures Classics)
Writers/Directors: Aaron Katz, Martha Stephens, Producers: Christina Jennings, Mynette Louie, Sara Murphy

Best Supporting Female: Patricia Arquette, Boyhood (IFC Films)

Best Supporting Male: J.K. Simmons, Whiplash (Sony Pictures Classics)

Best Female Lead: Julianne Moore, Still Alice (Sony Pictures Classics)

Best Male Lead: Michael Keaton, Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Robert Altman Award: Inherent Vice (Warner Bros.)
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson, Casting Director: Cassandra Kulukundis, Ensemble Cast: Josh Brolin, Hong Chau, Martin Donovan, Jena Malone, Joanna Newsom, Joaquin Phoenix, Sasha Pieterse, Eric Roberts, Maya Rudolph, Martin Short, Serena Scott Thomas, Benicio del Toro, Katherine Waterston, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon, Michael Kenneth Williams.

Best Cinematography: Emmanuel Lubezki, Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Best Editing: Tom Cross, Whiplash (Sony Pictures Classics)

Best International Film: Ida (Poland – Music Box Films)
Director: Pawel Pawlikowski

Best Documentary: CITIZENFOUR (RADiUS-TWC / HBO Documentary Films / Participant Media)
Director: Laura Poitras; Producers: Mathilde Bonnefoy, Dirk Wilutzky

Special Distinction Award: Foxcatcher (Sony Pictures Classics)
Director/Producer: Bennett Miller, Producers: Anthony Bregman, Megan Ellison, Jon Kilik, Writers: E. Max Frye, Dan Futterman, Actors: Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo, Channing Tatum

Complete list of 2015 Spirit Awards nominees

-By Rebecca Murray

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