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    12 Years a Slave Leads Nominees for 2014 Film Independent Spirit Awards—Are Golden Globes and Oscars Next?

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    12 Years a Slave, Twelve Years a Slave
    12 Years a Slave, Twelve Years a Slave Fox Searchlight

    Is Brad Pitt this year's George Clooney and Ben Affleck rolled into one?

    12 Years a Slave, which counts Pitt as a producer, leads all nominees for the 2014 Film Independent Spirit Awards, the shabby-chic, beach-side fest traditionally held the day before the Oscars.

    And while 2013 darling Argo, whose production team included Affleck and Clooney, was a big studio movie, 12 Years could easily equal its success and leave producer Pitt with a whole bunch of new trophies on his mantel (or wherever he and Angelina Jolia like to keep their loot).

    The Steve McQueen-directed epic earned seven nominations, including Best Feature, Best Director, Best Male Lead for Chiwetel Ojiafor, Best Supporting Male for Michael Fassbender and Best Supporting Female for standout newcomer Lupita Nyong'o.

    PHOTOS: 12 Years a Slave movie pics

    Thanks to the large haul, Fox Searchlight (the indie arm of 20th Century Fox) is the most nominated distributor heading into the ceremony.

    Joining 12 Years a Slave in the Best Feature category are the Coen brothers' folk-music trip Inside Llewyn Davis, the one-man survival show All Is Lost, the black and white dramedy Frances Ha and the similarly black and white father-son odyssey Nebraska.

    Matthew McConaughey, Jared Leto, The Dallas Buyers Club, Holiday Movie Guide Focus Features

    The acting categories are their usual mix of major players and up-and-comers. For Best Lead Actor, Ejiofor has competition from veteran thesps Robert Redford in All Is Lost  and Nebraska's Bruce Dern, who are both 77; Matthew McConaughey, who got the nod for Dallas Buyers Club over Mud after earning raves for both performances; singer-actor Oscar Isaac who scored the title role that the Coens thought might be uncastable in Inside Llewyn Davis; and breakout star of the year Michael B. Jordan, who took on the role of an average guy going about the last day of his life in Fruitvale Station.

    Mud is the 2014 recipient of the Robert Altman Award, given out for the best ensemble in a film.

    The Best Supporting Male category is pretty packed with household names, too, including James Gandolfini, earning a posthumous nod for the romantic comedy Enough Said. Competition there includes Fassbender, Jared Letofor Dallas Buyers Club, Will Forte for Nebraska and Keith Stanfield for Short Term 12.

    Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine Sony Picture Classics

    Cate Blanchett as expected was nominated for Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine, which also earned him a screenwriting nod; and she'll square off against Before Midnight's Julie Delpy, Crystal Fairy's Gaby Hoffman; Short Term 12's Bree Larson; and The Spectacular Now's Shailene Woodley, who won Best Supporting Female in 2012 for The Descendants. (Greta Gerwig, whose performance was said to be the glue holding Frances Ha together, is noticeably missing from the list.)

    Patton Oswalt will host the March 1 daytime ceremony in a tent set up alongside the beach in Santa Monica, Calif. As usual, the event is being televised on IFC, meaning no bleeps necessary.

    Here's a complete list of the nominees for the 2014 Film Independent Spirit Awards:

    Best Feature

    12 Years a Slave
     All Is Lost
     Frances Ha
     Inside Llewyn Davis

    Best Director

     Shane Carruth, Upstream Color
     J.C. Chandor, All Is Lost
     Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave
     Jeff Nichols, Mud
     Alexander Payne, Nebraska

    Best Screenplay

     Woody Allen, Blue Jasmine 
     Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke & Richard Linklater, Before Midnight
     Nicole Holofcener, Enough Said
     Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber, The Spectacular Now
     John Ridley, 12 Years a Slave

    Best First Feature

     Blue Caprice

     Fruitvale Station 
     Una Noche

    Best First Screenplay

     Lake Bell, In a World
     Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Don Jon
     Bob Nelson, Nebraska
     Jill Soloway, Afternoon Delight
     Michael Starrbury, The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete

    John Cassavetes Award

     Computer Chess
     Crystal Fairy
     Museum Hours
     Pit Stop
     This Is Martin Bonner

    Best Female Lead

     Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
     Julie Delpy, Before Midnight
     Gaby Hoffman, Crystal Fairy
     Brie Larson, Short Term 12
     Shailene Woodley, The Spectacular Now 

    Best Male Lead

     Bruce Dern, Nebraska
     Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
     Oscar Isaac, Inside Llewyn Davis
     Michael B. Jordan, Fruitvale Station
     Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club
     Robert Redford, All Is Lost

    Best Supporting Female

     Melonie Diaz, Fruitvale Station
     Sally Hawkins, Blue Jasmine
     Lupita Nyong'o, 12 Years a Slave
     Yolanda Ross, Go for Sisters
     June Squibb, Nebraska

     Best Supporting Male

     Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave
     Will Forte, Nebraska
     James Gandolfini, Enough Said
     Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
     Keith Stanfield, Short Term 12

    Best Cinematography

     12 Years a Slave
     Spring Breakers
     Inside Llewyn Davis
     All Is Lost
     Computer Chess

    Best Editing

     Upstream Color
     Museum Hours
     Frances Ha

     Una Noche
     Short Term 12 

    Best Documentary

     20 Feet From Stardom
     After Tiller
     Gideon's Army
     The Act of Killing
     The Square

    Best International Film

     A Touch of Sin
     Blue Is the Warmest Color
     The Great Beauty
     The Hunt

    Robert Altman Award for Best Ensemble: Mud

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