Spirit Awards moves to gender-neutral categories

Spirit
(Spirit Winner Maggie Gyllenhaal)

Film Independent announced today a move to gender-neutral acting categories for the 2023 Spirit Awards. The acting categories encompass both film and television.

In response to the rising cost of production, the organization also announced that the budget cap for eligible films has increased to $30 million, with the budget cap for the beloved John Cassavetes Award now $1 million. The Spirit Awards will be held on March 4, 2023. Submissions are now open.

“We’re thrilled to join the other festivals and award shows that are already moving to celebrate great acting without reference to gender. We’re also happy to welcome non-binary performers into the Spirit Awards without forcing them to choose to identify as male or female,” said Film Independent President Josh Welsh. “Additionally, it has been a long time since we substantially increased the budget limit for eligibility. This new cap allows us to continue to celebrate the same breadth of work that we have in the past.”

Honoring a long-standing commitment to inclusivity and representation, Film Independent is the most recent organization to implement non-gendered awards. Other awards to embrace non-gendered categories include The Grammys, The Gotham Awards, The British Independent Film Awards, and the MTV Movie & TV Awards.

No longer defined by gender, awards in the lead and supporting film acting categories will instead be known as Best Lead Performance and Best Supporting Performance. Awards in the television acting categories will similarly be known as Best Lead Performance and Best Supporting Performance in a New Scripted Series.


REELated:


Other category updates include new awards for Best Breakthrough Performance (film) and Best Supporting Performance in a New Scripted Series (television). All performance categories, excluding Breakthrough Performance, will feature up to ten nominees. The modified performance categories are as follows:

SPIRIT AWARDS PERFORMANCE CATEGORIES – FILM

● Best Lead Performance (10 nominees)
● Best Supporting Performance (10 nominees)
● Best Breakthrough Performance (5 nominees) *new award

SPIRIT AWARDS PERFORMANCE CATEGORIES – TELEVISION

● Best Lead Performance in a New Scripted Series (10 nominees)
● Best Supporting Performance in a New Scripted Series (10 nominees) *new award

In response to the continuing effects of COVID on filmmakers and the industry, Film Independent is once again waiving the theatrical run typically required for eligibility, ensuring more opportunities for independent filmmakers to be recognized and celebrated.

SPIRIT AWARDS SUBMISSIONS DEADLINES – FILM

● Early Deadline is September 6
● Regular Deadline is September 20
● Final Deadline is October 4
● Extended Deadline for Arts Circle and Filmmaker Pro Members is October 7

SPIRIT AWARDS SUBMISSIONS DEADLINES – TELEVISION

● Regular Deadline is September 20
● Final Deadline is October 4
● Extended Deadline for Arts Circle and Filmmaker Pro Members is October 7

Film nominations for the 2023 Spirit Awards will be announced virtually on November 22, 2022. Television nominations will be announced on December 13, 2022. The ceremony will take place on March 4, 2023.
 


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