Let’s talk about voting. Yeah right, you’re thinking. The time to talk about voting was three weeks ago. Well, you’re right. That’s not necessarily the kind of voting I’m talking about, though what I’m talking about does represent in microcosm the importance of making a firm choice to help empower underrepresented (and under-supported) creative voices.
That’s right: voting for the 2017 Film Independent Spirit Awards may seem like small potatoes in light of recent historical events, but—surprise!—it’s not. Equitable media representation is core to building a more diverse, fair and functional Republic. And that idea—championing underrepresented voices in film—has always (always!) been at the heart of what the Spirit Awards are all about, ever since they began 30+ years ago.
Just look at the 2016 Spirit Awards from this past January, when Tangerine co-star Mya Taylor became the first trans actress to take home a major film award (a Spirit Award for Best Supporting Female), among other diverse winners. Missed it? Watch Taylor’s stirring acceptance speech in it’s entirety below:
So let’s say you want a voice in deciding which artists will grace our awards stage in 2017. In other words, you want to vote for independents. How, though? Easy: become a Member of Film Independent—Members who join by December 6 can avail themselves of all Spirit Award benefits. Benefits include:
Screeners! That’s right, screeners of select Spirit Award-nominated films will appear in your mailbox and inbox as if by magic—all the better to fill those languid mid-January nights when you’ve been stuffed so full of NFL playoff tailgating goodies that you couldn’t possibly turn on the news for fear of projectile vomiting all over your flatscreen. Who doesn’t love screeners!
Free Theatrical Screenings! Members in LA and New York are invited to attend—for free—exclusive in-theater screenings of all Spirit Award-nominated films, getting a chance to watch (on the big screen) the very best independent films of the year. And don’t worry if you miss the December deadline. Screenings are available to all new Members joining through January 13.
Other stuff! That’s right: other stuff. Priority pre-sale registration and discounted ticket rates to the LA Film Festival. Year-round Member screenings. Access to all Film Independent at LACMA programming. Free film education and filmmaker toolkit resources. Job board access. Member networking. Lowered Festival submission rates. And much, much more all for the price of $95 a year. No, I didn’t say “month.” Annually.
Look, we’re not trying to sell you a used car. This is Film Independent asking for your help in deciding the faces, films and ideas that give shape to our mission. A vote for independents is a vote for the future of movies, and our culture.
Click here for a complete list of 2017 Film Independent Spirit Award nominees, or watch last week’s press conference announcement of the nominations:
So please. Stretch out those keyboard-clicking fingers, squeeze some Visine into those soon-to-be-watching eyeballs and consider becoming a Member of Film Independent today. (Did we mention free screeners?)