Here they are– the winners of the 2011 Boston Society of Film Critics Awards!!  THE ARTIST has just been named BEST PICTURE! It’s one of 15 major awards we voted Sunday afternoon (12/11)– covering film, performances, and technical achievement. It was a LONG meeting with many rounds of balloting– because no single film had big momentum, as you will see when you read the list.

Only three films won more than one award: “THE ARTIST” won BEST PICTURE and tied with “DRIVE” for best USE OF MUSIC IN A FILM.  “DRIVE” also earned a BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR nod for ALBERT BROOKS. MONEYBALL won BEST SCREENPLAY and BEST ACTOR for BRAD PITT.  Check the BSFC website for the complete list including additional special year-end awards and commendations.

These awards are our local version of the OSCARS– and in fact may influence the OSCAR results, as critics organizations around the country weigh in and make studios and academy members sit up and take notice! So here goes — our Critics’ picks for 2011!

Best Picture  –  THE ARTIST

Best Actor –  Brad Pitt for MONEYBALL

Best Actress – Michelle Williams for MY WEEK WITH MARILYN

Best Supporting Actor –  Albert Brooks for DRIVE

Best Supporting Actress –  Melissa McCarthy for BRIDESMAIDS

Best Director –  Martin Scorsese for HUGO

Best Screenplay –  Steven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin and Stan Chervin for MONEYBALL

Best Cinematography – Emmanuel Lubezki for THE TREE OF LIFE

Best Documentary –  PROJECT NIM

Best Foreign-Language Film – INCENDIES

Best Animated Film –  RANGO

Best Film Editing (awarded in memory of Karen Schmeer) – Christian Marclay for THE CLOCK

Best New Filmmaker (awarded in memory of David Brudnoy) –  Sean Durkin for MARTHA MARCY MAY MARLENE

Best Ensemble Cast –  CARNAGE

Best Use of Music in a Film  –  Tie: DRIVE and THE ARTIST

Of course, in between voting, donuts, coffee, and pizza– we chew the fat. Among the bits of recollected behind the scenes Hollywood trivia that had us in stitches today:

Ricky Nelson wore a chest toupee in RIO BRAVO!

John Wayne had short arms! So the studio suggested he disguise the fact by walking with his arms slightly bent at his sides– as if he were always about to draw a gun!

Cary Grant was not perfect–he had an extra thick neck and too large a head– so his collars were adjusted to minimize his proportions!

Joan Crawford had big hips–so they padded out her shoulders to balance her figure– hence the emergence of the big shouldered “40’s” silhouette!

MGM kept track of its female stars’ menstrual cycles– so they couldn’t make up that excuse for not showing up to work!

I gotta say, I love this meeting– and our merry band of critics will officially be giving out its awards this coming February. I will announce the date as soon as it’s finalized, so stay tuned– because you’re all invited!!