The Film Independent Awards have moved forward in replacing the Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Supporting Actress categories in film and television with gender-neutral categories, Best Lead Performance, and Best Supporting Performance. Ten performers in each category will be eligible for nomination.
There will also be a Best Breakthrough Performance category. However, unlike the Lead and Supporting categories, only five performers will be eligible for nomination.
They’ve also redefined what constitutes as an Independent film, meaning that eligible movies will now have to cost $30 million or less, whereas the John Cassavetes Awards will celebrate films that have cost $1 million or less. Next year’s ceremony will be taking place on March 4, 2023.
In a statement, Film Independent president Josh Welsh said that “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. 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.”
Non-theatrical movies will also be eligible for nomination this year, due to the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter