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Sunday, 25 March, 2001, 17:50 GMT 18:50 UK
Tiger triumph at independent awards
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
Crouching Tiger won three awards
Oscar-nominated Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon has triumphed at the Independent Spirit Awards, the leading showcase for arthouse films.

At the ceremony in Santa Monica, California, the film from Taiwanese director Ang Lee won best feature, best director and best supporting female for Zhang Ziyi.

The acclaimed film is up for 10 Oscars, including feature, director and foreign-language film.

Other Oscar contenders to take home Spirit awards were Spanish actor Javier Bardem, US actors Willem Dafoe, Ellen Burstyn and screenwriter Kenneth Lonergan.

You Can Count on Me
You Can Count on Me won best screenplay

Traditionally, there is little crossover between the Academy and the Spirit Awards.

The first tends to honour blockbuster movies while the Spirits are the reserve of provocative, low-budget films.

Last year, Hilary Swank was the only winner at both ceremonies for her lead role in Boys Don't Cry.

Even the ceremonies are different. The Oscars are a black-tie affair in downtown Los Angeles, and the Spirits took place on Saturday night under a beach marquee.

Kenneth Lonergan's You Can Count on Me won best first feature and best screenplay.

Lonergan, who also directed the film, is competing for an original screenplay Oscar.

Javier Bardem
Javier Bardem (left) won for Before Night Falls

Best actress Oscar nominee Ellen Burstyn won best female lead for her role as a drug-addicted spinster in Requiem for a Dream. The film also won best cinematography.

Javier Bardem, who is a best supporting actor Oscar nominee, won the best male lead Spirit award for his role as exiled Cuban novelist Reinaldo Arenas in Before Night Falls.

Willem Dafoe won his Spirit for a supporting role as German actor Max Schreck in the comedy Shadow of the Vampire.

Other winners included the stalker comedy Chuck & Buck, which took away the trophy for best feature under $500,000.

Michelle Rodriguez won the debut performance award for her role in high school drama Girlfight.

Danish director Lars Von Trier, won the foreign film prize for Dancer in the Dark.

The Spirit Awards are organised by the west coast branch of the Independent Feature Project, a non-profit support group for independent film-makers.

Winners are decided by a ballot of the group's 9,000 members across the US.

See also:

05 Jan 01 | Entertainment
Ang Lee's Tiger roars on
31 Oct 00 | Entertainment
Review: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
13 Feb 01 | Entertainment
Oscar nominees in full
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