"Frozen River" has come out victorious at the 18th Annual Gotham Independent Film Awards. On December 2 at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City, the Sony Pictures Classics dramatic thriller has been awarded with two kudos from the awards presented to independent films and those who make them.
The Courtney Hunt-directed drama about a New York mother getting into the world of illegal immigrant smuggling has been recognized as Best Feature, beating out "Ballast", "Synecdoche, New York", "The Visitor" and "The Wrestler". Accepting the coveted award, Hunt said, "I did not see this one coming, I did not see this coming." Apart from the Best Picture prize, the movie also helped its star Melissa Leo to earn the Breakthrough Actor kudo.
Other winners included "Synecdoche, New York" and "Vicky Cristina Barcelona" which were tied for the title of Best Ensemble Performance. In the meantime, the awards for Breakthrough Director went to Lance Hammer for his work on "Ballast", and for Best Documentary was given to "Trouble the Water".
The awards gala was hosted by "The Daily Show" correspondent Aasif Mandvi. On the special event, actress Penelope Cruz, filmmakers Gus Van Sant and Melvin Van Peebles, and HBO documentary maven Sheila Nevins were honored with Tribute awards.
Winners List of 2008 Gotham Independent Film Awards: