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Gotham Awards: Felicity Jones scoops top prize

Like Crazy

Story by Jack Foley

BRITISH actress Felicity Jones has scooped one of the top prizes at the 2011 Gotham Independent Film Awards in America.

The former Archers luminary was named best breakthrough actor for her performance in teen love story Like Crazy alongside Anton Yelchin.

Jones, who is also on the longlist for the Orange Rising Star Awards at next year’s BAFTAs, has had a busy year, rising to UK promience with roles in Chalet Girl and Albatross

The big winners on the night, however, were indie dramas Beginners and The Tree of Life.

The two films shared the best feature accolade.

Beginners, Mike Mills’ film about a man’s relationship with his just-out-of-the-closet father, also took home the ensemble award for its cast, led by Ewan McGregor and Christopher Plummer.

The Tree of Life, meanwhile, is Terrence Malick’s Palme d’Or winning drama about a man trying to understand his life and upbringing at the hands of a disciplinarian father (played by Brad Pitt).

A further award went to upcoming drama Pariah, which tells the story of a Brooklyn teenage girl growing into her sexuality. Its helmer, Dee Rees, took the breakthrough director prize.

The Gotham Awards are handed out every year and this was the 21st annual ceremony, which also included previously announced career tributes to director David Cronenberg and stars Charlize Theron and Gary Oldman.

Winners at a glance:

Best Feature:
Beginners/The Tree of Life

Best Documentary:
Better this World by Katie Galloway and Kelly Duane de la Vega

Best Ensemble:
Beginners (Ewan McGregor, Christopher Plummer, Mélanie Laurent, Goran Visnjic, Kai Lennox, Mary Page Keller, Keegan Boos(

Breakthrough Actor:
Felicity Jones, Like Crazy

Breakthrough Director:
Dee Rees, Pariah

Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You:
Scenes of a Crime by Blue Hadaegh & Grover Babcock