Sunday 26 January 2020

New venue for Spirit Awards

Eddie Izzard will host the new-look Spirit Awards
Eddie Izzard will host the new-look Spirit Awards

The Spirit Awards will mark their 25th year by trading their traditional Saturday beachside luncheon for a Friday night party downtown.

The US awards, honouring the year's best work in independent film, have typically been presented during an afternoon ceremony the day before the Oscars in a tent at Santa Monica Beach. But Film Independent, which puts on the annual event, decided to shake things up to mark the show's quarter-century milestone.

"We resisted for a while, because we had a successful formula -- that beach-casual feeling reinforces what the independent-film feeling is about," said Dawn Hudson, executive director of Film Independent.

"We thought this is the year to try something different... It felt like the right thing to try on this 25th anniversary and really help our mission, which is to get the word out about these films."

The awards, hosted by Eddie Izzard, will be held on March 5 in a stylised tent atop the LA Live parking structure and broadcast live on the Independent Film Channel, which has aired the ceremony for the past 15 years.

Nominated films this year include Precious and The Last Station, while A Serious Man will also receive a special honour.

A spate of stars nominated for acting Oscars this year will serve as Spirit Awards presenters, including Jeremy Renner, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Carey Mulligan and Vera Farmiga.

Jeff Bridges is also slated to sing on the show with Oscar-nominated songwriters T Bone Burnett and Ryan Bingham.

PA Media

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