New York, NY (January 26, 2021) – The National Board of Review today announced their 2020 honorees, with Da 5 Bloods earning Best Film and Best Director for Spike Lee, Best Actor for Riz Ahmed in Sound of Metal, and Best Actress for Carey Mulligan in Promising Young Woman. The organization has also announced that Chadwick Boseman will posthumously receive the NBR Icon Award, an honor that celebrates the work of leading cinematic artists who contribute meaningfully to the history, culture, and excellence of motion pictures. The NBR will announce its plans to celebrate its 2020 honorees at a later date.

“The NBR is proud to honor Da 5 Bloods, Spike Lee, and the film’s incredible ensemble cast, along with all of our 2020 awardees. Lee is one of our greatest filmmakers, a bold auteur with a cinematic vision and an astute perspective on human relationships, focusing at times on that intersection between the personal and the political. Da 5 Bloods is not only a unique portrait of the experience and lingering trauma of Black Vietnam War veterans, but also a moving story of enduring friendship, a suspenseful jungle treasure hunt, and a powerful reckoning with the American dream,” said NBR President Annie Schulhof. “We are also honored to present the posthumous NBR Icon Award to Chadwick Boseman, an extraordinary talent who represented the best of what an actor could be no matter what the role.”

The 2020 awards continue the NBR’s tradition of recognizing excellence in filmmaking, going back 112 years. This year 281 films were viewed by a select group of film enthusiasts, filmmakers, professionals, academics, and students, many of which were followed by in-depth discussions with directors, actors, producers, and screenwriters. Voting ballots were tabulated by the accounting firm of Lutz & Carr, LLP.     

The National Board of Review’s awards celebrate excellence in filmmaking with categories that include Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Actress, Best Original and Adapted Screenplay, Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography, Best Foreign Language Film, Best Animated Feature, Best Documentary, Breakthrough Performance, and Best Directorial Debut as well as signature honors such as the Spotlight Award, Freedom of Expression and the NBR Icon Award.    

Below is a full list of the 2020 award recipients, announced by the National Board of Review:

Best Film: DA 5 BLOODS
Best Director: Spike Lee, DA 5 BLOODS
Best Actor: Riz Ahmed, SOUND OF METAL
Best Actress: Carey Mulligan, PROMISING YOUNG WOMAN
Best Supporting Actor: Paul Raci, SOUND OF METAL
Best Supporting Actress: Youn Yuh-jung, MINARI
Best Adapted Screenplay: Paul Greengrass & Luke Davies, NEWS OF THE WORLD
Best Original Screenplay: Lee Isaac Chung, MINARI
Breakthrough Performance: Sidney Flanigan, NEVER RARELY SOMETIMES ALWAYS
Best Directorial Debut: Channing Godfrey Peoples, MISS JUNETEENTH
Best Animated Feature: SOUL
Best Foreign Language Film: LA LLORONA
Best Documentary: TIME
NBR Icon Award: Chadwick Boseman
NBR Freedom of Expression Award: ONE NIGHT IN MIAMI
NBR Spotlight Award: Radha Blank for writing, directing, producing and starring in THE FORTY-YEAR-OLD VERSION
Best Ensemble: DA 5 BLOODS
Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography: Joshua James Richards, NOMADLAND

Top Films (in alphabetical order)

First Cow
The Forty-Year-Old Version
Judas and the Black Messiah
The Midnight Sky
News of the World
Promising Young Woman
Sound of Metal

Top 5 Foreign Language Films (in alphabetical order)

Dear Comrades!
The Mole Agent
Night of the Kings

Top 5 Documentaries (in alphabetical order)

ALL IN: The Fight For Democracy
Boys State
Dick Johnson is Dead
Miss Americana
The Truffle Hunters

Top 10 Independent Films (in alphabetical order)

The Climb
Farewell Amor
Miss Juneteenth
The Nest
Never Rarely Sometimes Always
The Outpost
Saint Frances

Since 1909, the National Board of Review has dedicated its efforts to the support of cinema as both art and entertainment. Each year, this select group of film enthusiasts, filmmakers, professionals and academics of varying ages and backgrounds watches over 250 films and participates in illuminating discussions with directors, actors, producers and screenwriters before announcing their selections for the best work of the year.  Since first citing year-end cinematic achievements in 1929, NBR has recognized a vast selection of outstanding studio, independent, foreign-language, animated and documentary films, often propelling recipients such as Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman, Peter Farrelly’s Green Book and George Miller’s Mad Max: Fury Road into the larger awards conversation. NBR also stands out as the only film organization that bestows a film history award in honor of former member and film historian William K. Everson. In addition, one of the organization’s core values is identifying new talent and nurturing young filmmakers by awarding promising talent with ‘Directorial Debut’ and ‘Breakthrough Actor’ awards as well as grants to rising film students and by facilitating community outreach through the support of organizations such as The Ghetto Film School, Reel Works Teen Filmmaking, and Educational Video Center. With its continued efforts to assist up-and-coming artists in completing and presenting their work, NBR honors its commitment to not just identifying the best that current cinema has to offer, but also ensuring the quality of films for future generations to come.   

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Shawn Purdy / Elyse Weissman
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