Awards season has begun! No, seriously. The Gotham Independent Film Awards has become the first major group to announce their nominees for the year's best films, and in keeping with tradition has focused on the underdogs-- The Hurt Locker and Big Fan led the nominations with three apiece, each of them earning nominations for Best Feature and Breakthrough Actor for their respective stars, Jeremy Renner and Patton Oswalt.

Locker also got a nod for Best Ensemble, while Fan director Robert Siegel, who made his directorial debut with the film, was nominated for Breakthrough Director. The closest to mainstream film to get nominated was A Serious Man, which received nods for Best Feature and Best Ensemble Performance-- given that the only directing award is for Breakthrough Director, the Coen Brothers weren't eligible for their own prize.

As in years past, the nominations are a mix of truly obscure indies-- Amreeka and The Maid, both nominated for Best Feature, are practically unheard of beyond Manhattan art cinemas-- and stuff you've actually heard of. The awards serve ever so slightly as Oscar precursors only because they can mark the beginning of buzz; the nominations may help A Serious Man and The Hurt Locker remain longshots in the Oscar hunt, while reminding some voters, or at least critic's groups, that Siegel's Big Fan screenplay was pretty great.

Some snubs I'm sorry to see left out-- Duncan Jones' Moon should have had a shot at both Breakthrough Director and Actor, though I guess Big Fan had the shot-in-New-York advantage. And where in the world is Anvil! The Story of Anvil, one of the year's best documentaries and precisely the kind of tiny indie that needs this boost? I love that the Gothams can make room for some of the best, most overlooked films, but I guess there's always just too much to be included even here.

Read below for the full list of nominees in all six categories, and below that is a montage of scenes from the films nominated for Best Feature. The Gotham Awards will be handed out on November 30, and we're hoping to be there to cover it.

Best Feature
Big Fan
The Hurt Locker
The Maid
A Serious Man

Best Documentary
Food, Inc.
Good Hair
My Neighbor My Killer

Best Ensemble Performance
Cold Souls
The Hurt Locker
A Serious Man

Breakthrough Director
Cruz Angeles for Don’t Let Me Drown
Frazer Bradshaw for Everything Strange and New
Noah Buschel for The Missing Person
Derick Martini for Lymelife
Robert Siegel for Big Fan

Breakthrough Actor
Ben Foster in The Messenger
Patton Oswalt in Big Fan
Jeremy Renner in The Hurt Locker
Catalina Saavedra in The Maid
Soulémane Sy Savané in Goodbye Solo

Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You
Everything Strange and New
Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench
October Country
You Won’t Miss Me
Zero Bridge

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