By Ray Pride

British Independent Film Awards 2016 Announced



 American Honey wins four awards, including Best British Independent Film

I, Daniel Blake stars Dave Johns, Hayley Squires celebrated

Moonlight wins Best International Independent Film

London, Sunday 4 December: American Honey won the night at the 2016 British Independent Film Awards (BIFA) held at Old Billingsgate. The film won four awards including Best British Independent Film. Andrea Arnold took home Best Director, Sasha Lane won Best Actress sponsored by MAC and Robbie Ryan’s Cinematography was rewarded with the Outstanding Achievement in Craft award.


The film will be screened in 25 Vue, Odeon and Everyman cinemas across the country on Sunday 11 December, as the first in the BIFA Independents screening series supported by the BFI.


Also recognised was the eponymous hero of I, Daniel Blake, Dave Johns. He took home the Best Actoraward, while his co-star Hayley Squires was named Most Promising Newcomer sponsored by The London EDITION.


Under the Shadow collected three awards: Best Screenplay sponsored by BBC Films and The Douglas Hickox Award (Best Debut Director) both went to Babak Anvari. Avin Manshadi, the film’s nine-year-old star, won Best Supporting Actress.


Brett Goldstein was named Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Adult Life Skills and the film’s writer Rachel Tunnard won the inaugural Best Debut Screenwriter award.


Notes on Blindness was named Best Documentary. Camille Gatin received the Breakthrough Produceraward for her debut project The Girl With All the Gifts. Cult comedy The Greasy Strangler won The Discovery Award sponsored by Raindance.


The Best British Short Film award, sponsored by NOWNESS, was presented to Jacked.


The only category of the night open to non-UK film, Best International Independent Film sponsored by Champagne Taittinger, was won by Moonlight.


The Special Jury Prize was presented to Clare Binns by Edith Bowman and Mark Herbert. The jury praised her unstinting efforts in bringing independent film to new audiences.


As previously announced Naomie Harris was presented The Variety Award by Danny Boyle in recognition of the global impact she has made in 2016, helping to focus the international film spotlight on the UK. The Richard Harris Award was presented to Alison Steadman by Richard Harris’ granddaughter Ella Harris and Alison’s co-star from Life Is Sweet, Claire Skinner. The award recognises outstanding contribution to British film by an actor.


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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon