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'Pariah' Wins Independent Spirit's John Cassavetes Award

'Pariah' Wins Independent Spirit's John Cassavetes Award

At an Independent Spirit Awards dominated by The Artist on Saturday the lesbian-themed Pariah landed the John Cassavetes Award handed out to features budgeted at less than $500,000.

TracyEGilchrist

At an Independent Spirit Awards dominated by The Artist on Saturday the lesbian-themed film Pariah landed the John Cassavetes Award, awarded to features budgeted at less than $500,000, according to Indiewire. 

The out lesbians who helmed the picture, director Dee Rees and producer Nekisa Cooper, accepted the award.

Pariah landed the award in a tough field over another lesbian-themed film Circumstance, along with  Bellflower, Hello Lonesome and The Dynamiter.

Pariah tells the story of Alike, a 17-year-old African-American woman living with her parents and younger sister in Brooklyn’s Fort Greene neighborhood. Alike, along with her best friend (who is living out loud), navigates through the struggles of every day high school and home life, while trying to quietly embrace her identity as a lesbian.

The film’s star Adepero Oduye was nominated for Best Female Lead but lost to Michelle Williams for My Week with Marilyn. Still, Oduye was a winner of sorts at this year’s Golden Globe Awards when winner Meryl Streep, in her acceptance speech, gave a shout out to Oduye’s star turn in Pariah.

Here are Cooper and Rees accepting the John Cassavetes Award:

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Tracy E. Gilchrist

<p>Cinephile, cyclist, proud cat lady and unabashed Pretty Little Liars guru.</p>

<p>Cinephile, cyclist, proud cat lady and unabashed Pretty Little Liars guru.</p>