The Awards Season Kicks Off With The Hollywood Film Awards

The Hollywood Film Awards accompany the Hollywood Film Festival, and honor excellence in filmmaking by recognizing both newcomers and veterans alike. In its 16th year, The Hollywood Film Awards honored the career of Richard Gere, who is coming off an excellent (and perhaps career-best) performance in Arbitrage. After the jump, you can read more about who else was honored at their ceremony, which took place Sunday, October 21st at the Arc Light Cinemas in Hollywood.

In the acting categories, Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook) and Marion Cotillard (Rust and Bone) were recognized for their lead roles, while Robert De Niro (Silver Linings Playbook) and Amy Adams (The Master) received honors for their supporting turns. The cast of Argo received an Ensemble prize, while John Hawkes (The Sessions) was adulated for his breakthrough performance. Quvenzhané Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild) was given the New Hollywood Award, while other young actors such as Ezra Miller, Tom Holland, Samantha Barks, Bella Heathcote, John Magaro, and Kelly Reilly received the Spotlight Awards.

Behind the scenes, David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook) and Dustin Hoffman (Quartet) were honored as Director and Breakthrough Director, respectively, while Quentin Tarantino (Django Unchained) was recognized for his screenplay, and Judd Apatow (This is 40) for comedy. Wally Pfister (cinematography), Dylan Tichenor (editing), Sarah Greenwood (production design), Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner (producing), and Jeff White (visual effects) were also celebrated for their work. Peter Ramsey’s Rise of the Guardians was named best animated feature.

Festival and Awards Founder Carlos de Abreum was in attendance, and cited their fest as the official start of the awards season, mentioning that in the last nine years, 85 Oscar nominations and 32 Oscars were given to the honorees of this festival.

So who – aside from the obvious choice of Richard Gere – might gain from the early buzz? As far as acting, I think Bradley Cooper – who is speculated to be on the cusp of an Oscar nomination – gains the most traction here, while any kind of spotlight on Quvenzhané Wallis boosts her (and her small film’s) Oscar hopes. The last five films to win the animated feature prize here went on to win the Oscar, so Rise of the Guardians should be looked at as a potential frontrunner in a category that doesn’t seem to have one.

Who do you think gains the most here?