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Chi crix look ‘Sideways’ for 2004 best pic award

Eastwood nabs helmer honors

This article was corrected on December 21, 2004.

The Chicago Film Critics Assn., following the cues of the New York, Los Angeles and New York Online Critics, has named “Sideways” the best picture of 2004.

Three of the four acting prizes went to “Sideways.” Star Paul Giamatti took actor kudos; Thomas Haden Church drew the supporting actor nod and Virginia Madsen took supporting actress.

Writer-helmer Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor won the screenplay award for the wine country road picture.

Clint Eastwood took director honors for “Million Dollar Baby,” and the actress prize went to Imelda Staunton for “Vera Drake.”

France’s “A Very Long Engagement” drew best foreign film. Zach Braff was named most promising new filmmaker for his work on “Garden State,” while most promising new actor went to Catalina Sandino Moreno for her role as a South American drug smuggler in “Maria Full of Grace.”

“The Aviator” took musical score kudos and tied with “Hero” for cinematography.

The 43 critics will honor the recipients during a gala at the Chicago Union League Club in April.