'The Hurt Locker wins top prize at Gotham AwardsKnown as the kick off to the awards season, the 19th annual Gotham Independent Film Awards took place in lower Manhattan last night with 'The Hurt Locker' winning Best Feature and Best Ensemble.

The film's director, Kathryn Bigelow, was also awarded the Gotham's Tribute Award for career achievement. The other Tribute Award recipients were Natalie Portman, Working Title Films' heads Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, and Stanley Tucci, who quipped when receiving the award, "It's a little too early to give this to me. I'm far too young but look much too old to receive this award."

'Food, Inc.' won Best Documentary, and Robert Siegel, who gained high praise for penning 'The Wrestler' last year, won the Breakthrough Director award for his feature debut 'Big Fan,' which stars Patton Owsalt as a crazed Giants fan who's obsessed with call-in sports radio. 'The Hurt Locker wins top prize at Gotham AwardsKnown as the kick off to the awards season, the 19th annual Gotham Independent Film Awards took place in lower Manhattan last night with 'The Hurt Locker' winning Best Feature and Best Ensemble.

The film's director, Kathryn Bigelow, was also awarded the Gotham's Tribute Award for career achievement. The other Tribute Award recipients were Natalie Portman, Working Title Films' heads Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, and Stanley Tucci, who quipped when receiving the award, "It's a little too early to give this to me. I'm far too young but look much too old to receive this award."

'Food, Inc.' won Best Documentary, and Robert Siegel, who gained high praise for penning 'The Wrestler' last year, won the Breakthrough Director award for his feature debut 'Big Fan,' which stars Patton Owsalt as a crazed Giants fan who's obsessed with call-in sports radio.

Produced by the non-profit organization, Independent Feature Project, which for over 30 years has helped support independent filmmakers, the Gotham Awards is unlike the usual award shows. There isn't much fuss about what people are wearing or who they're showing up with; it's a night where the indie film community can come together and not have to think about the rigors of making their works on shoestring budgets -- and, running at a brisk two hours long, it's the quickest awards show you'll ever witness.

But the camaraderie is what Bigelow took from the night. "Without this community I would not have been able to make 'The Hurt Locker,'" she told Moviefone backstage.

As we move forward through award season we'll see if Bigelow's already highly talked about film can maintain its momentum, continue to rack up the accolades and -- who knows? -- maybe get a little love come Oscar time.

Here is the full list of winners:

Best Feature: 'The Hurt Locker'

Best Documentary: 'Food, Inc.'

Breakthrough Director Award: Robert Siegel, 'Big Fan'

Breakthrough Actor Award: Catalina Saavedra, 'The Maid'

Best Ensemble Performance: Jeremy Renner, Anthony Mackie, Brian Geraghty, Ralph Fiennes, Guy Pearce, David Morse and Evangeline Lilly in 'The Hurt Locker'

Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You: 'You Wont Miss Me,' Ry Russo-Young
[Full Disclosure: I am an editor of Filmmaker Magazine, which chooses the winner of this award.]
CATEGORIES Movies, Awards