Sundance Film Festival

Sundance films get SAG, Golden Globe nods

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In the days between the announcements of the Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild Awards nominations this week and the handing out of the awards themselves next month, much time will be spent parsing who’s gotten a nod, who’s been overlooked, what it says about the state of cinema today and what it portends for Oscar night. But as the awards-season hoopla and handicapping gets going in earnest, it’s worth taking a moment to note a few films amongst the nominees that got their start at Sundance Film Festival 2009.

PRECIOUS: BASED ON THE NOVEL PUSH BY SAPPHIRE snagged Sundance’s Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award in the U.S. Dramatic category when it debuted at the festival last January, under the title PUSH: BASED ON THE NOVEL BY SAPPHIRE, and the actress Mo’Nique won a Special Jury Prize for her work in the film. At the Golden Globes in January, PRECIOUS is in contention for Best Motion Picture – Drama, and Gabourey Sidibe, who plays the film’s title role, is up for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama. Mo’Nique, who plays Precious’ abusive mother, has been nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture. Not too shabby.

Sidibe became an instant fan favorite when she told the press that, upon hearing her name read among the Golden Globe nominees, “I jumped … because Justin Timberlake said my name. It’s not just that I’m excited because he said my name, but I love that he said my name in the context of me possibly winning an award for this movie.” Very sweet.

And Mo’Nique? When she heard the news, she told the New York Times, she was “In the bathroom with my husband having a conversation, just laughing and joking and he gets a text from one of the producers of ‘The Mo’Nique Show,’ saying ‘Congratulations, on the Golden Globe nomination.’ I just started laughing. I said, O.K.!” The bathroom, you ask? Funny, that’s what the Times asked, too. “You know what, our bathroom is I guess, you know how people have their favorite room? It just happens to be our bathroom,” she said, laughing. “That’s normally where we get all our news!”

Sidibe and Mo’Nique are both also up for SAG Awards, and the entire cast of the film has been nominated for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture. (Here’s a complete list of the film’s awards and nominations.)

Marc Webb’s (500) DAYS OF SUMMER, meanwhile, which premiered at Sundance 2009, has been nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy. Joseph Gordon-Levitt has gotten a nod for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy for his role in the film.

Sebastian Siva’s THE MAID (LA NANA), from Chile, which had its North American premiere at Sundance last year in the International Narrative Feature Film category, has also been tapped by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for a Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film.

The Golden Globe Awards will be handed out on Sunday, January 17; the Screen Actors Guild Awards will be distributed on Sunday, January 23. PRECIOUS, (500) DAYS OF SUMMER and THE MAID have been nominated for Spirit Awards as well. That ceremony will take place on Friday, March 5.