“Into the Wild” won best feature honors Tuesday at the 17th Gotham Awards.
The Gothams, given by the Independent Feature Project, go to winners in six categories. Small juries decide each winner.
“Sicko” took home the docu prize.
Ensemble cast award was shared by “Talk to Me” and “Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead.”
“Into the Wild’s” star, Emile Hirsch, said in accepting the top prize, “When this film came along, I was 35 pounds overweight sitting on a couch with a shaved head. I’m not anymore.”
Ellen Page won for breakthrough actor in “Juno.” She lauded the screenplay and said it had made her “obsessive about playing Juno. … I’m so proud that there is a teenage character like her going out into the world.”
Breakthrough director honors went to Craig Zobel for “Great World of Sound.”
“Frownland” won the cheekily named award, Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You.
Six already-announced tributes were handed out to critic Roger Ebert, thesp Javier Bardem, director Mira Nair, production designer Mark Friedberg, IFC Entertainment prexy Jonathan Sehring and New York mayor Michael Bloomberg.
It was the first year in the 17 years of the Gothams that the ceremony had been held at Steiner Studios, the Brooklyn soundstages where a range of major pics and TV series have been shot.
And the winners are:
“Into the Wild” – Sean Penn, director; Sean Penn, Art Linson, Bill Pohlad, producers (Paramount Vantage & River Road Entertainment)
“Sicko” – Michael Moore, director; Michael Moore, Meghan O’Hara, producers (The Weinstein Company)
Craig Zobel – “Great Wall of Sound” (Magnolia Pictures)
Ellen Page – “Juno”
(tie)“Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead” – Albert Finney, Rosemary Harris, Ethan Hawke, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Brian F. O’Byrne, Amy Ryan, Michael Shannon, Marisa Tomei (THINKFilm)
“Talk to Me” – Cedric the Entertainer, Don Cheadle, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mike Epps, Vondie Curtis Hall, Taraji P. Henson, Martin Sheen (Focus Features)
FILM NOT PLAYING AT A THEATER NEAR YOU
“Frownland” – Ronald Bronstein, director; Marc Raybin, producer