Awards Season Heats Up With the National Board of Review Honorees

As far as film award shows go, the National Board of Review is unique — and low-stress — because there are no nominees, only winners.

The organization released its list of 2020 honorees today, offering another hint at which actors and films will continue to fare well in the months ahead on the way to the Oscars grand finale. During last year’s awards ceremony, held in early January at Cipriani 42nd Street, the industry’s enthusiasm for “Parasite” was on proud display, and an early sign of the film’s eventual awards sweep. Asked about his favorite films of the year, 2019 best actor honoree Adam Sandler rated director Joon-Ho Bong’s film a 12 out of 10.

This year, “Sound of Metal” actor Riz Ahmed received the best actor honor, which follows the actor’s win in the same category at the Gotham Awards earlier this month. “Da 5 Bloods” also got a strong nod from the National Board of Review, taking home the honor of best film and also best director for Spike Lee, who penned the screenplay. Meanwhile, the award for Best Original Screenplay went to Lee Isaac Chung for “Minari,” which also earned Yuh-jung Youn the best supporting actress award. Other buzzy films that have emerged as serious contenders include “Promising Young Women” — Carey Mulligan was awarded Best Actress — and “Miss Juneteenth.” The late Chadwick Boseman is being recognized with the icon award.

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The ceremony is typically an insider-y industry event that isn’t broadcast. As such, the organization noted that it plans to hold a celebration for its honorees at a future, unspecified date.

Below, a list of all of this year’s honorees:

Best Film: Da 5 Bloods

Best Director: Spike Lee, Da 5 Bloods

Best Actor: Riz Ahmed, Sound of Metal

Best Actress: Carey Mulligan, Promising Young Woman

Best Supporting Actor: Paul Raci, Sound of Metal

Best Supporting Actress: Yuh-jung Youn, Minari

Best Adapted Screenplay: Paul Greengrass and Luke Davies, News of the World

Best Original Screenplay: Lee Isaac Chung, Minari

Breakthrough Performance: Sidney Flanigan, Never Rarely Sometimes Always

Best Directorial Debut: Channing Godfrey Peoples, Miss Juneteenth

Best Animated Feature: Soul

Best Foreign Language Film: La Llorona

Best Documentary: Time

NBR Icon Award: Chadwick Boseman

NBR Freedom of Expression Award: One Night in Miami

NBR Spotlight Award: Radha Blank for writing, directing, producing and starring in The Forty-Year-Old Version

Best Ensemble: Da 5 Bloods

Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography: Joshua James Richards, Nomadland

Top Films (in alphabetical order):
First Cow
The Forty-Year-Old Version
Judas and the Black Messiah
The Midnight Sky
Minari
News of the World
Nomadland
Promising Young Woman
Soul
Sound of Metal

Top 5 Foreign Language Films (in alphabetical order):
Apples
Collective
Dear Comrades
The Mole Agent
Night of the Kings

Top 5 Documentaries (in alphabetical order):
All In: The Fight for Democracy
Boys State
Dick Johnson is Dead
Miss Americana
The Truffle Hunters

Top 10 Independent Films (in alphabetical order):
The Climb
Driveways
Farewell Amor
Miss Juneteenth
The Nest
Never Rarely Sometimes Always
The Outpost
Relic
Saint Frances
Wolfwalkers

Joon-Ho Bong, Jeong-eun Lee and and Song Kang-ho. Lexie Moreland/WWD

Ronald Bronstein, Adam Sandler, Joshua Safdie and Ben Safdie. Lexie Moreland/WWD

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