Awards Central
Location: California, USA

  • As the first event to honor independent film exclusively, Film Independent's Spirit Awards, formerly known as the Independent Spirit Awards, has made a name for itself as the premier awards event for the independent film community. Keeping with its roots and L.A. location, the Spirit Awards take place each year inside a beachfront tent in Santa Monica, California. The Spirit Awards is a celebration of independent filmmakers who bring a unique vision and a spirit of independence to filmmaking. The Spirit Awards is produced by Film Independent, the largest non-profit membership organization dedicated to cultivating the careers of independent filmmakers, building the audience for independent films, and increasing diversity in the film industry.

Time Specification: regular

Geographic Specification: national


Independent Spirit Award
Given: 1986-

Special Distinction Award

John Cassavetes Award
Given to the writer, director and producer and best feature made for under USD 500,000.

Robert Altman Award
Given to one film's director, casting director and its ensemble cast.

Truer Than Fiction Award
Given: 1997-
The award is presented to the director of a nonfiction feature film of outstanding artistic and dramatic achievement. The award's purpose is to foster wider appreciation and theatrical distribution of nonfiction feature-length motion pictures - films that by their very nature are independent. The director of the winning film will receive an unrestricted grant (as of 2000).

Producers Award
Given: 1998-
The award recognizes an individual who demonstrates the exceptional creativity, tenacity, and vision required to produce quality independent films, despite highly limited resources. The recipient will receive an unrestricted grant (as of 2000).

Someone to Watch Award
Given: 1995-
The award honors independent filmmakers of exceptional talent who have not yet received the recognition they deserve. The award was created to bring attention to deserving filmmakers and to give them substantive help toward pursuing their craft. The winner receives an unrestricted grant (as of 2000).

FIND Your Audience Award

Friend of Independents Award