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IFP eyes 6 thesps for breakthrough kudos

Honoree, jury member Close will judge with Strathairn, Swank

For the first time, six thesps will battle it out for the IFP/Gotham’s annual breakthrough acting prize. Org has also announced the nomination list for the Open Palm directing prize.

In years past, org named just one acting honoree. New tradition will have a jury select the winner from a list of finalists, as is done with the Open Palm candidates.

Breakthrough acting nominees this year are: Bobby Cannavale (“The Station Agent”), Jesse Eisenberg (“Roger Dodger”) Lee Pace (“Soldier’s Girl); Paul Schneider (“All the Real Girls”), Judy Marte and Victor Rasuk (both “Raising Victor Vargas.”)

Glenn Close, David Strathairn and Hilary Swank will be this year’s jury members. Last year, honors went to Maggie Gyllenhaal for “Secretary.”

Open Palm prize recognizes directorial debuts. Helmers who received nods are: Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini (“American Splendor”), Alfredo de Villa (“Washington Heights”), Peter Hedges (“Pieces of April”), Dylan Kidd (“Roger Dodger”), Tom McCarthy (“The Station Agent”) and Peter Sollett (“Raising Victor Vargas”).

Jury this year includes Michael Almereyda, Nancy Savoca and Variety reporter David Rooney. Past winners include Eric Eason (“Manito”) and Henry Bean (“Girlfight”).

Now in its 13th year, the annual IFP Gotham Awards Gala will be held Sept. 22. Kudocast will air on IFC and Bravo.

As previously announced, evening’s other honorees will be Close and Steve Buscemi, Focus Features co-prexy David Linde and producer Edward R. Pressman.

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