‘American Honey’ Tops British Independent Film Awards

Barry Jenkins’ “Moonlight” wins the award for Best International Independent Film

Last Updated: December 4, 2016 @ 2:22 PM

Andrea Arnold’s raucous travelogue “American Honey” has been named the best independent British film of 2016 at the British Independent Film Awards, which took place on Sunday night in London.

Arnold was also named best director for the film.

Acting winners included Dave Johns for “I, Daniel Blake,” Sasha Lane for “American Honey,” Brett Goldstein for “Adult Life Skills” and 10-year-old Avin Manshadi for “Under the Shadow.”

Hayley Squires beat her “I, Daniel Blake” castmate Johns to win the award as most promising newcomer, while “American Honey” cinematographer Robbie Ryan won in a crafts category that also included a casting director, an assistant director, an editor and a sound designer.

Babak Anvari won the award as the best British debut director for “Under the Shadow,” his Iran-set horror film that is currently in the running as the UK’s entry in the Oscar foreign-language race.

“I, Daniel Blake” had gone into the ceremony with the most nominations, seven, followed by six for “American Honey,” the documentary “Notes on Blindness” and the Iran-set horror film “Under the Shadow.”

Barry Jenkins’ “Moonlight” won the award for Best International Independent Film. Other nominees in the category included current awards favorite “Manchester by the Sea”; last year’s Oscar nominee in the foreign-language category, “Mustang”; and this year’s contender in that category, “Toni Erdmann.”

The only two films to win the top award at British Independent Film Awards and also win the Oscars for Best Picture are “Slumdog Millionaire” and “The King’s Speech.” But BIFA’s Best Foreign Independent Film has given prizes to “Room,” “Boyhood,” “A Separation,” “The Lives of Others” and “All About My Mother,” all of which have won Oscars in other categories.

BIFA nominations are made by about 150 members of the organization, which is open to filmmakers and heads of departments on past BIFA-nominated films, as well as to film professionals with significant experience in independent film. The winners are then chosen by a jury of professionals from the British film industry.

Here is a list of the British Independent Film Awards nominees. Winners indicated by *WINNER.

Best British Independent Film
“American Honey” *WINNER
“Couple in a Hole”
“I, Daniel Blake”
“Notes on Blindness”
“Under the Shadow”

Best Documentary
“The Confession: Living the War on Terror”
“Dancer”
“The Hard Stop”
“Notes on Blindness” *WINNER
“Versus: The Life and Films of Ken Loach

Best Director
Babak Anvari for “Under the Shadow”
Andrea Arnold for “American Honey” *WINNER
Ken Loach for “I, Daniel Blake”
Pete Middleton and James Spinney for “Notes on Blindness”
Ben Wheatley for “Free Fire”

The Douglas Hickox Award for Debut Director
Babak Anvari for “Under the Shadow” *WINNER
Alice Lowe for “Prevenge”
Pete Middleton and James Spinney for “Notes on Blindness”
Adam Smith for “Trespass Against Us”
Rachel Tunnard for “Adult Life Skills”

Best Screenplay
Babak Anvari for “Under the Shadow” *WINNER
Andrea Arnold for “American Honey”
Christopher Hyde and Billy O’Brien for “I Am Not a Serial Killer”
Paul Laverty for “I, Daniel Blake”
Rachel Tunnard for “Adult Life Skills”

Debut Screenwriter
Rachel Tunnard for “Adult Life Skills” *WINNER
Hope Dickson Leach for “The Levelling”
Simon Farnaby and Julian Barratt for “Mindhorn”
John Cairns and Michael McCartney for “A Patch of Fog”
Ed Talfan for “Yr Ymadawiad” (“The Passing”)

Best Actress
Kate Dickie in “Couple in a Hole”
Sasha Lane in “American Honey” *WINNER
Narges Rashidi in “Under the Shadow”
Hayley Squires in “I, Daniel Blake”
Jodie Whittaker in “Adult Life Skills”

Best Supporting Actress
Gemma Arterton in the “Girl With All the Gifts”
Naomi Harris in “Our Kind of Traitor”
Avin Manshadi in “Under the Shadow” *WINNER
Terry Pheto in “A United Kingdom”
Shana Swash in “My Feral Heart”

Best Actor
Steve Brandon in “My Feral Heart”
Shia LaBeouf in “American Honey”
Michael Fassbender in “Trespass Against Us”
Dave Johns in “I, Daniel Blake” *WINNER
Max Records in “I Am Not a Serial Killer”

Best Supporting Actor
Jamie Dornan in “Anthropoid”
Brett Goldstein in “Adult Life Skills” *WINNER
Sean Harris in “Trespass Against Us”
Arinzé Kene in “The Pass”
Christopher Lloyd in “I Am Not a Serial Killer”

Most Promising Newcomer
Steve Brandon in “My Feral Heart”
Dave Johns in “I, Daniel Blake”
Sennia Nanua in the “Girl With All the Gifts”
Hayley Squires in “I, Daniel Blake” *WINNER
Letitia Wright in “Urban Hymn”

Outstanding Achievement in Craft
Shaheen Baig, casting, “Free Fire”
Seb Barker, assistant director, “The Girl With All the Gifts”
Paul Monaghan, editor, and Mat Whitecross, director, “Supersonic”
Robbie Ryan, cinematographer, “American Honey” *WINNER
Joakim Sundström, sound designer, “Notes on Blindness”

The Discovery Award
“Black Mountain Poets,” Jamie Adams
“The Darkest Universe,” Tom Kingsley and Will Sharpe
“The Ghoul,” Gareth Tunley
“Gozo,” Miranda Bowen
“The Greasy Strangler,” Jim Hosking *WINNER

Best International Independent Film
“Hunt for Wilderpeople,” Taika Waititi, New Zealand
“Manchester by the Sea,” Kenneth Lonergan, USA
“Moonlight,” Barry Jenkins, USA *WINNER
“Mustang,” Deniz Gamze Ergüven, France, Germany, Turkey and Qatar
“Toni Erdmann,” Maren Ade, Germany and Austria

Breakthrough Producer
Michael Berliner for “Adult Life Skills”
Camille Gatin for “The Girl With All the Gifts” *WINNER
Dionne Walker for “The Hard Stop”
Mike Brett, Jo Jo Ellison and Steve Jamison for “Notes on Blindness”
Paul Fegan for “Where You’re Meant To Be”

Best British Short
“Jacked,” Rene Pannevis *WINNER
“Mother,” Leo Leigh
“Over,” Jörn Threlfall
“Rate Me,” Fyzal Boulifa
“The Wrong End of the Stick,” Terri Matthew

Special Jury Prize
Clare Binns

Richard Harris Award
Alison Steadman

Variety Award
Naomie Harris