Film Independent's Spirit Awards Heading Downtown to L.A. Live

By Alesandra Dubin October 16, 2009, 12:45 PM EDT

Film Independent, the nonprofit arts organization that produces the Spirit Awards and the Los Angeles Film Festival, announced Thursday that the 2010 Spirit Awards will be held on Friday, March 5, in a tent on the event deck at L.A. Live—a departure from the show's typical home on the day before the Academy Awards and its most recent Santa Monica location. This time the awards will be handed out two days before the Oscars, which are scheduled for Sunday, March 7.

Over the past 25 years, the event has been held at various locations in Los Angeles, including the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, Beverly Hills Hotel, Hollywood Palladium, and the Santa Monica beach.

“We wanted to do something very special and different for the 25th anniversary by holding the only late-night awards show, where our audience can tune in live at 11 p.m. on the East Coast,” said Film Independent executive director Dawn Hudson in the announcement. “Our new venue will still have the laid-back, no-holds-barred atmosphere that only the independent film community can create.” Some are nevertheless already speculating the move could change the independent character of the event.

Longtime Film Independent supporter and multiple award nominee Laura Dern is chairing the event committee. Dick Clark Productions and independent producer Jamie McGurk will serve as executive producers, taking over from Diana Zahn-Storey, who executive produced the show for 15 years. IFC, Elle, Piaget, Acura, Jameson Irish Whiskey, and Netflix will sponsor the ceremony.

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