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Ryan Gosling, Michelle Williams, The Artist: See Who's Up for the Indie Spirit Awards

Independent Spirit, Jessica Chastain, Jean Dujardin, Elizabeth Olsen, Ryan Gosling, Michelle Williams The Weinstein Company, Fox Searchlight, Sony, Sony Classics

Goes to show you don't need much in the way of sound to make a good indie.

The Artist, chronicling the declining fortunes of a silent film star, is making lots of noise this awards season, especially considering it has now tied apocalpytic drama Take Shelter with five nominations, including Best Feature, to lead the list of nominees at the 2012 Independent Spirit Awards.

Coming up in their rearview mirror, however, are two Hollywood hotties by the name of Ryan Gosling and George Clooney, whose respective art-house vehicles Drive and The Descendants have racked up four noms apiece.  Of course, this year's ceremony will feature a gaggle of other famous faces including Christopher Plummer, Anjelica Huston, Albert Brooks and Woody Harrelson, all of whom are taking their turn around the indie track.

Here's who else is in the running.

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The Artist, a French romance filmed in the style of the old silent classics of yore, is shaping up to be a big contender thanks to its old-school pretensions, earning a nod for Best Director and Best Screenplay for Michel Hazanavicius as well as Best Actor for its lead Jean Dujardin and Best Cinematography for Guillaume Schiffman.

But The Artist has a pretty good rival in Take Shelter, Jeff Nichols' critically acclaimed portrait of a small-town Ohio man with apocalyptic visions who builds a storm shelter in his backyard. Aside from being nominated for Best Feature and Director, the flick has garnered nominations for stars Michael Shannon and Jessica Chastain.

Marking the return of Sideways director Alexander Payne after a seven-year layoff, The Descendants is looking to increase its assets in the trophy department as it's up for Best Feature, Director, Screenplay and Actor for Clooney, who plays a wealthy lawyer living in Hawaii who must care for his two daughters after his wife's boating accident.

MORE: Indie Nominees Are Black (Swan) and Blue (Valentine) and Starry All Over

After revving up audiences at the Cannes Film Festival in May, Nicolas Winding Refn's slow-burner Drive may have hit a wall at the box office, but the critics love it. Among its nominations are Best Feature, Director, and Actor for Gosling as a stuntman who moonlights as a getaway driver for hire for L.A's criminal underword.

Gosling's costar in 2010's Blue Valentine, Michelle Williams, meanwhile has snagged herself a spot in the Best Actress category for her highly lauded turn as Marilyn Monroe in My Week With Marilyn. She'll go up against Elizabeth Olsen, who's making a name for herself outside her twin sisters with her starring role in Martha Marcy May Marlene.

Other notable nominees include Harrelson for Rampart, Huston for the just-released cancer dramedy, 50/50, Plummer for Beginners, Lauren Ambrose for Think of Me, and John C. Reilly for the comedy Cedar Rapids.

The 2012 Film Independent Spirit Awards are set to take place in Santa Monica on Feb. 25.  Below is the complete list of nominees:

BEST FEATURE
50/50
Beginners

Drive
Take Shelter

The Artist
The Descendants

BEST DIRECTOR
Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
Mike Mills, Beginners
Jeff Nichols, Take Shelter
Alexander Payne, The Descendants
Nicolas Winding Refn, Drive

BEST FEMALE LEAD
Lauren Ambrose, Think of Me
Rachael Harris, Natural Selection
Adepero Oduye, Pariah
Elizabeth Olsen, Martha Marcy May Marlene
Michelle Williams, My Week with Marilyn

BEST MALE LEAD
Demián Bichir, A Better Life
Jean Dujardin, The Artist
Ryan Gosling, Drive
Woody Harrelson, Rampart
Michael Shannon, Take Shelter

BEST SUPPORTING FEMALE
Jessica Chastain, Take Shelter
Anjelica Huston, 50/50
Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs
Harmony Santana, Gun Hill Road
Shailene Woodley, The Descendants

BEST SUPPORTING MALE
Albert Brooks, Drive
John Hawkes, Martha Marcy May Marlene
Christopher Plummer, Beginners
Corey Stoll, Midnight in Paris

BEST SCREENPLAY
Joseph Cedar, Footnote
Michel Hazanacivius, The Artist
Tom McCarthy, Win Win
Mike Mills, Beginners
Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon, Jim Rash, The Descendants

BEST FIRST FEATURE
Another Earth
In the Family
Margin Call
Martha Marcy May Marlene
Natural Selection

BEST FIRST SCREENPLAY
Mike Cahill, Brit Marling, Another Earth
J.C. Chandor, Margin Call
Patrick deWitt, Terri
Phil Johnston, Cedar Rapids
Will Reiser, 50/50

JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD
Bellflower
; Writer/Director: Evan Glodell, Producers: Evan Glodell, Vincent Grashaw
Circumstance; Writer/Director: Maryam Keshavarz, Producers: Karin Chien, Maryam Keshavarz, Melissa M. Lee
Hello Lonesome
; Writer/Director/Producer: Adam Reid
Pariah; Writer/Director: Dee Rees, Producer: Nekisa Cooper
The Dynamiter; Writer: Brad Inglesby, Director: Matthew Gordon, Producers: Matthew Gordon, Merilee Holt, Art Jones, Mike Jones, Nate Tuck, Amile Wilson

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Joel Hodge, Bellflower
Benjamin Kasulke, The Off Hours
Darius Khonji, Midnight in Paris
Guillaume Shiffman, The Artist
Jeffrey Waldron, The Dynamiter

BEST DOCUMENTARY
An African Election
Bill Cunningham New York
The Interrupters
The Redemption of General Butt Naked
We Were Here

BEST FOREIGN FILM
A Separation (Iran), Director: Ashghar Farhadi
Melancholia (Denmark/Sweden/France/Germany), Director: Lars von Trier
Shame, (U.K.) Director: Steve McQueen
The Kid With a Bike (Belgium/France/Italy), Director: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Tyrannosaur, (U.K.) Director: Paddy Considine

ACURA SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD
Simon Arthur, Silver Tongues
Mark Jackson, Without
Nicholas Ozeki, Mamitas

PIAGET PRODUCERS AWARD
Chad Burris, Mosquita y Mari
Sophia Lin, Take Shelter
Josh Mondi, Martha Marcy May Marlene

TRUER THAN FICTION AWARD
Heather Courtney, Where Soldiers Come From
Danfung Dennis, Hell and Back Again
Alma Har-el, Bombay Beach

ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD
Margin Call—Director: J.C. Chandor; Casting Director: Tiffany Little Canfield, Bernard Telsey; Ensemble Cast: Penn Badgley, Simon Baker, Paul Bettany, Jeremy Irons, Mary McDonnell, Demi Moore, Zachary Quinto, Kevin Spacey, Stanley Tucci

PICS: Ryan Gosling: Movie Star!

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