2011 Washington DC Area Film Critics Awards
Washington, D.C. — The Washington, D.C. Area Film Critics Association (WAFCA) this morning announced their 2011 winners, recognizing a diverse array of films. While past years have elevated one or more films over the competition, this year, WAFCA’s members distributed their praise evenly. Aside from three films that shared two awards apiece, all others were solo winners.
The winner of Best Film went to the black-and-white, silent film homage "The Artist." Splitting Best Film and Best Director, Martin Scorsese won top directing honors for "Hugo," another movie that celebrates the art of cinema.
"We in D.C. know what it’s like to live and work in a city dominated by a single industry," said WAFCA president, Tim Gordon. "In honoring both ‘The Artist’ and ‘Hugo,’ WAFCA is spotlighting two films that are love letters to the film industry that we all love so well."
Best Actor and Best Actress went to two former television stars, George Clooney (for his role as a grieving husband in "The Descendants") and Michelle Williams (for channeling film icon Marilyn Monroe in "My Week with Marilyn"), respectively. Albert Brooks won Best Supporting Actor for his role as a cutthroat mobster in "Drive," and Octavia Spencer won Best Supporting Actress for her role as an outspoken maid in "The Help." The Best Acting Ensemble award went to the cast of the ribald comedy, "Bridesmaids."
"The Descendants," about a man who discovers his comatose wife had been cheating on him, also won Best Adapted Screenplay, while "50/50," about a young man’s challenge to overcome cancer, secured Best Original Screenplay.
Rounding out the rest of the awards, Best Animated Feature went to special effects juggernaut Industrial Light and Magic’s first animated film, "Rango;" Best Documentary went to Werner Herzog’s "Cave of Forgotten Dreams," about the discovery of 30,000-year-old cave paintings in France; and Pedro Almod—var’s "The Skin I Live In" took home Best Foreign Language Film.
Best Art Direction went to Production Designer icon Dante Ferretti and Set Decorator Francesca Lo Schiavo for "Hugo." Emmanuel Lubezki won Best Cinematography for his work on Terrence Malick’s contemplative "The Tree of Life." Ludovic Bource won Best Score for his omnipresent work in "The Artist."
"This is WAFCA’s 10th anniversary, and as an organization we are very proud of the choices that our membership made throughout this process," said Gordon. "There were no sweeps this year. No ties. Just a surprisingly diverse spread of awards that highlights both the exceptional films nominated and the distinct make-up of our great organization."
The Washington, D.C. Area Film Critics Association is comprised of 43 DC-VA-MD-based film critics from television, radio, print and the Internet. Voting was conducted from December 2-4, 2011.