Gotham Awards to shift to gender-neutral acting awards

Entertainment

NEW YORK (AP) — The Gotham Awards, the annual New York ceremony for independent film, is the latest film honor to shift to acting categories that aren’t defined by gender.

The Gotham Film & Media Institute on Thursday said they will do away with best actor and best actress categories and replace them with “outstanding lead performance” and “outstanding supporting performance.”

While award shows like the Oscars, Emmys and Tonys have stuck with the traditional male- and female-designated categories, a growing number of other ceremonies have shifted to gender-neutral awards. The Berlin Film Festival in March handed out their first none-gendered awards. The Grammy Awards ceased separating male and female artists in 2012.

“The Gotham Awards have a 30 year history of celebrating diverse voices in independent storytelling,” said Jeffrey Sharp, executive director of the Gotham Film & Media Institute, in a statement.

“We are proud to recognize outstanding acting achievements each year, and look forward to a new model of honoring performances without binary divisions of gender,” said Sharp. “We are grateful to those who helped to start this conversation in recent years and we are thrilled that the Gotham Awards will continue to support artistic excellence in a more inclusive and equitable way.”

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