Can Little Indies Hope to Win Big Awards?

The Independent Spirit Awards Beg the Question

On the eve of the Oscars and the immediate aftermath of the Independent Spirit Awards, the chaotic war of art and commerce epitomized by this season suddenly felt very small. Late at night, word got around that New Wave master Alain Resnais had died in Paris at 91.

It was one of those news items that felt both inevitable and surreal to anyone passionate about the movies. It concluded a career that spanned half a century and spawned countless cinephiles with seminal enigmas of cinematic ingenuity, from “Night and Fog” to “Last Year at Marienbad” and “Hiroshima Mon Amour.” Just last month, Resnais unveiled his final work, the theater adaptation “The Life of Riley,” while the time travel head trip “Je T’Aime, Je T’aime” landed a weeklong revival at New York’s Film Forum. For most of his career, Resnais was a ubiquitous symbol of cinema’s power to riff on time and memory with transcendent, probing results. More than just an icon in the history of 20th-century art, Resnais proved it had no tangible restrictions. “I never looked to make difficult movies on purpose,” he once said. “You make the films you want to make.”

With his finest achievements, Resnais made that commitment look easy. But some 5,600 miles away from Paris, on a rainy Saturday afternoon in Los Angeles, it seemed harder than ever. In the press tent behind the stage for the Independent Spirit Awards, Brad Pitt looked out at a roomful of journalists, clutching the award for best feature that he shared for producing “12 Years a Slave,” and didn’t smile. “The risk was me being a distraction on this,” he said. “The cold reality is that this is a hard movie to get made.”…

Check out the rest of Can Little Indies Hope to Win Big Awards? originally found on Indiewire.