Saturday, May 25, 2024

Gotham Awards: “Past Lives” is Unlikely Choice for Best Feature, Best Performance Goes to Lily Gladstone


Tonight’s Gotham Awards almost went off without a hitch. (See De Niro story)

Overall, the night was a hit, with Jeff Sharp and co. upping their game by turning the night into a black tie affair. To supplement the indie films that were nominated, the Gothams offered tribute awards to a bunch of big ticket movies who brought their star studded casts. They included “Killers of the Flower Moon,” “Maestro,” “Barbie,” “Rustin,” etc.

The new idea worked so that indie filmmakers got more attention by being mixed in with big names.

Lots of people met each other for the first time, too. One of the best moments was when Bradley Cooper and Colman Domingo got a chance to say hello to each other. They may be the top choices for Best Actor at the Oscars in March.

A big surprise for the night was Celine Song’s “Past Lives” getting Best Feature after Song lost both Best Director and Screenplay. Plus Best Performance went to Lily Gladstone, not for “Killers of the Flower Moon” but for a small film called “The Unknown Country.” I think this shows how much good will Gladstone has — watch for the Oscars for “Killers.”

I got to meet a lot of cool people including Da’Vine Randolph and Danielle Brooks, each of whom will be in the Oscar mix. Rebecca Hall and Morgan Spector were best looking couple of the night, and they were each presenters.

Yes, the Gothams were used this year as a marketing tool for Oscar movies, but that was just fine. When Julianne Moore and Natalie Portman presented the final award, Best Feature, it lent glamour to the proceedings. (Imagine that they are now our elders, our vets! They’re too young!

Moore and Portman’s co-star in “May December,” Charles Melton, was the surprise winner in Supporting Performance. (The acting awards are gender free, which most people feel is a big mistake. But that’s for another time.) Melton had the women swooning in his shirt free outfit. We joked that with this win he could now afford a shirt. (He didn’t laugh as much as I thought he would, but he’s a very nice, earnest guy– so far!)

Other stars in the mix: Penelope Cruz, who inconceivably lost Best Supporting (because it was gender free), looked gorgeous, would have won Best Supporting Actress for “Ferrari” and will be Oscar nominated. And Willem Dafoe, sans “Poor Things” scars, back to normal and thankful everyone’s enjoying that movie — which will open soon, plus “American Fiction” star Jeffrey Wright, and “Rustin” veteran actor Glynn Turman.

Leonardo DiCaprio was in the house, but he was more like a cypher. “Killers” director Martin Scorsese was a no show, but I know why– next item.

The 33rd Annual Gotham Award recipients are:

Best Feature
Past Lives
Directed by Celine Song

Best Documentary Feature
Four Daughters
Directed by Kaouther Ben Hania

Best International Feature
Anatomy of a Fall
Directed by Justine Triet

Outstanding Lead Performance
Lily Gladstone in The Unknown Country

Outstanding Supporting Performance
Charles Melton in May December

Breakthrough Director Award
A.V. Rockwell for A Thousand and One

Best Screenplay
Justine Triet and Arthur Harari for Anatomy of a Fall

Breakthrough Series (Over 40 Minutes)
A Small Light
Created by Tony Phelan and Joan Rater

National Geographic

The Breakthrough Series (Over 40 Minutes) jury included: DeMane Davis, Frankie Faison, Sanaa Hamri, Haley Lu Richardson & Paul Thureen

For Breakthrough Series (Under 40 Minutes)
Created by Lee Sung Jin

For Outstanding Performance in a New Series
Ali Wong in Beef

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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