Michael Keaton’s critically-acclaimed Birdman will lead the way at the 2015 Independent Spirit Awards after landing six nominations today.
The star, who is hotly-tipped to earn an Oscar nod for his role as a fallen movie star in the new drama, will compete for Best Male Lead against Jake Gyllenhaal (Nightcrawler), John Lithgow (Love is Strange), David Oyelowo (Selma) and rapper/actor Andre Benjamin (Jimi: All Is By My Side), while his co-stars Edward Norton and Emma Stone will do battle for the respective supporting actor and actress titles.
Birdman is also shortlisted in the Best Director (Alejandro G. Inarritu) and Best Feature categories.
Other Best Feature contenders are Love Is Strange and Whiplash, in addition to five-time nominees Selma and Boyhood.
Nightcrawler also nabbed five nods, including mentions for Best Screenplay and Best First Feature for director Dan Gilroy.
The Robert Altman Award, presented to a film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast, will be handed to the people behind the scenes of Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice, while the cast and crew of Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher will be honored with the Special Distinction Award.
The 30th Independent Spirit Awards, which recognizes films made on a budget of less than $20 million, will take place in Santa Monica, California on 21 February- the eve of the 2015 Academy Awards.