The only place to be on Monday night in New York was at 55 Wall Street where the independent film Gotham Awards went off without a hitch and with plenty of celebrities.
And what a night it was: Maggie Gyllenhaal’s “The Lost Daughter” swept with Best Feature, Best Screenplay and Best Breakthrough Director. It was quite an achievement for the award winning and much praised actress, who is also the wife of a famous actor (Peter Sarsgaard), daughter of a screenwriter Naomi Foner) and director (Stephen Gyllenhaal) and sister of a famous actor (Jake Gyllenhaal). Maggie thanked them all in her various speeches, but she did it herself, and she is a new force to be reckoned with in the film world.
“The Lost Daughter” also won Olivia Colman a tie for Best Performance in a Film. Colman tied in the gender neutral category with veteran actor Frankie Faison for “The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain.” They were really Best Actress and Best Actor, but no one wanted to say it.
Best supporting performance in a film went to Troy Kotsur, a terrific actor who is also deaf, in “CODA/” The Sian Heder film is a dark horse in this year’s Oscar race but deserves a spot among the 10 finalists. “CODA” is a gem from Apple/A24 which has done little to promote it. “CODA” also took home Breakthrough Performer for Emilia Jones.
Best Documentary Feature went to “Flee,” directed by Jonas Poher Rasmussen. Best International Feature went to ” Drive My Car,” directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi.
Television awards were handed out, as well, in a very long but entertaining ceremony. The presenters included Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo, Ruth Negga, and Ethan Hawke, who won (in a tie) Outstanding Performance in a new Series for “The Good Lord Bird” on Showtime. Other notables in the audience of 800 people, all of whom dined in a huge Cipriani meal, included Caroline Aaron and Maren Hinkle from “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” Broadway great Brian Stokes Mitchell, Jennifer Coolidge, from “White Lotus,” and “Slave Play” playwright Jeremy O. Harris. There were several special awards including a presentation to the Actors Fund by former mayor Mike Bloomberg. Director Jane Campion (“Power of the Dog”) was honored, as was actor Peter Dinklage, and popular film exec Eammon Bowles. There was a special citation for late poet/filmmaker Kathleen Collins, who died in 1988 but whose memory has been kept alive by her talented daughter, Nina Collins.
The television awards:
Breakthrough Series (over 40 minutes)
Kim Ji-yeon, Hwang Dong-hyu, executive producers (Netflix)
Breakthrough Series (under 40 minutes)
Sterlin Harjo, Taika Waititi, creators; Taika Waititi, Sterlin Harjo, Garrett Basch, executive producers (FX)
Breakthrough Nonfiction Series
Ted Passon, Yoni Brook, Nicole Salazar, creators; Dawn Porter, Sally Jo Fifer, Lois Vossen, Ryan Chanatry, Gena Konstantinakos, Jeff Seelbach, Patty Quillin, executive producers (Topic, Independent Lens, PBS)
Outstanding Performance in a New Series
Thuso Mbedu in The Underground Railroad (Amazon Studios)
Ethan Hawke in The Good Lord Bird (Showtime)