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The Reeler Blog

More Gothams: NYC Execs Speak Out

The fallout from the gleefully patronizing 2006 Gotham Awards nominations continues today at indieWIRE, where Anthony Kaufman steps in with his NYC industry survey. As you might expect, the company line gets tighter around Michelle Byrd's neck, IFP board chairman Ira Deutschman wants his lawyer and his phone call and ThinkFilm mensch Mark Urman, whose Half Nelson snagged three nods including one for Best Feature, has the standout quote to end all quotes:

"I just think it's marvelously eclectic," he said. "We think it's a compliment to be included. I don't know how people can make a judgment," he admitted. "It's not just apples and oranges; it's apples, oranges, pears and kiwis, but they're all Gothamy fruit."

As Kaufman astutely points out, "Gothamy fruit" wasn't quite sweet enough for Urman two years ago, when Think's Primer got the Gothams' lone indie nod for top prize, but I don't know who really expects the guy to call out IFP for gentrifying when his own acqusitions budget just mainlined about eight figures' worth of Hollywood skrilla.

Standing out for all the wrong reasons is film writer Stephen Garrett, a member of the Gothams' selection committee and confirmed shut-in who clearly requires intervention:

"The indies were not as strong as everything on the list," he explained. "If there were three studio films in the final tally, it meant that we did not think that there were another three indie films that qualified to be on the list. I would rather see The Departed than Little Miss Sunshine, " he said. "I think it's just the dearth of quality of indie films."

Well, yeah -- when you put it that way. But reductive non-sequiturs aside, "everything on the list"? What fucking list? The wine list? If so, why stop there? Get your money's worth and assign Little Miss Sunshine's best ensemble cast nomination to The Departed as well. The 20th Century Fox hegemony is noticeably underrepresented; better yank Ramin Bahrani's breakthrough director nod and give it to Jason Reitman. I can hear it now: "Hi, Mr. Bahrani? Stephen Garrett here. Look. Buddy. I know this is kind of sudden, but you see, we've got this 'dearth of quality'..." Don't answer your phone today, Ramin.

Meanwhile, Sony Classics' Tom Bernard and IFC's Ryan Werner are admittedly disappointed, and Kino's Gary Palmucci acknowledges the nominations don't mean shit unless someone like Old Joy filmmaker Kelly Reichardt actually triumphs over The Departed, Marie Antoinette or Little Children... so on, so forth, we're all fucked, etc. etc. This is no longer news, it's tautology. Someone please buy me a drink.

Posted at October 26, 2006 12:53 PM

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