The Austin Chronicle

Austin Critics Announce Award Nominees

By Richard Whittaker, December 16, 2015, 11:00am, Picture in Picture

Awards season is imminent, and the Austin Film Critics Association this morning announced its nominees for its 2015 prizes. Leading the pack is Todd Haynes' period romance Carol, with seven nominations – including double best lead actress nods for Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara.

That list also includes an entry in the best picture category, joining Charlie Kaufman's mature take on stop-motion animation Anomalisa; George Miller's return to the post-apocalypse with Mad Max: Fury Road; and a pair of true-life tales, with journalistic procedural Spotlight, and Hollywood blacklist drama Trumbo.

The categories also include nominees for the Robert R. “Bobby” McCurdy Memorial Breakthrough Artist Award, named after AFCA co-founder McCurdy, and the previously announced nominees for Best Austin Film (eligibility for which requires the director to be a resident in Austin while the film was being made).

The winners, including special awards, will be announced by the AFCA on Dec. 29. So now, here are the nominees:

Best Film

Mad Max: Fury Road

Best Director

Todd Haynes, Carol
Tom McCarthy, Spotlight
Adam McKay, The Big Short
George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road
Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight

Best Actor

Bryan Cranston, Trumbo
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant
Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs
Michael B. Jordan, Creed
Jacob Tremblay, Room

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett, Carol
Brie Larson, Room
Rooney Mara, Carol
Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn
Charlize Theron, Mad Max: Fury Road

Best Supporting Actor

Benicio Del Toro, Sicario
Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation
Oscar Isaac, Ex Machina
Michael Shannon, 99 Homes
Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Best Supporting Actress

Elizabeth Banks, Love & Mercy
Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight
Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria
Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina
Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Best Original Screenplay

Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve, Josh Cooley, Inside Out
Alex Garland, Ex Machina
Taylor Sheridan, Sicario
Josh Singer & Tom McCarthy, Spotlight
Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight

Best Adapted Screenplay

Emma Donoghue, Room
Charlie Kaufman, Anomalisa
Phyllis Nagy, Carol
Charles Randolph and Adam McKay, The Big Short
Aaron Sorkin, Steve Jobs

Best Cinematography

Roger Deakins, Sicario
Edward Lachman, Carol
Emmanuel Lubezki, The Revenant
Robert Richardson, The Hateful Eight
John Seale, Mad Max: Fury Road

Best Score

Carter Burwell, Carol
Michael Giacchino, Inside Out
Tom Holkenborg (as Junkie XL), Max Max: Fury Road
Ennio Morricone, The Hateful Eight
Rich Vreeland (as Disasterpeace), It Follows

Best Foreign-Language Film

Son of Saul
The Tribe

Best Documentary

Best of Enemies
Cartel Land
The Look of Silence
Where to Invade Next

Best Animated Film

The Good Dinosaur
Inside Out
The Peanuts Movie
Shaun the Sheep Movie

Best First Film

Bone Tomahawk
The Diary of a Teenage Girl
Ex Machina
Son of Saul

The Robert R. “Bobby” McCurdy Memorial Breakthrough Artist Award

Abraham Attah, Beasts of No Nation
Amy Schumer, Trainwreck
Mya Taylor, Tangerine
Jacob Tremblay, Room
Alicia Vikander, Ex-Machina

Best Austin Film

Arlo & Julie, D: Steve Mims
A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velasquez Story, D: Sara Hirsh Bordo
Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter, D: David Zellner
Peace Officer, D: Brad Barber, Scott Christopherson
Two Step, D: Alex R. Johnson

Founded in 2005, the AFCA is an association of over 30 critics from publications and outlets including Ain't It Cool News, the Austin American-Statesman, The Austin Chronicle, Birth.Movies.Death., Cinapse, DVDActive, Fandango, Film School Rejects,,, Hill Country News, Horror's Not Dead, KOOP 91.7 FM Radio,, One of Us, ScreenCrush, Slackerwood, Smells Like Screen Spirit, Twitch, We Live Film, and YNN Austin.

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