News Tech: The Film Independent Spirit Awards will now feature gender neutral film and television acting categories and raise its budget cap to $30 million, the organization said Tuesday.
The Spirit Awards honor smaller budget indie films and are known for its starry, free-wheeling ceremony that’s part of the awards season runup to the Academy Awards.
“We’re thrilled to join the other festivals and award shows that are already moving to celebrate great acting without reference to gender,” Josh Welsh, Film Independent’s president, said in a statement. “We’re also happy to welcome non-binary performers into the Spirit Awards without forcing them to choose to identify as male or female.”
It joins several prominent awards organizations that have made the switch to non-gendered awards, including The Grammys, The Gotham Awards and the MTV Movie & TV Awards. The categories will now be “best lead performance” and “best supporting performance.