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LONDON (Reuters Life!) - "The King's Speech," starring Colin Firth as King George VI struggling to overcome a debilitating stammer, leads the field at the British Independent Film Awards this year with eight nominations.
The movie, also been tipped to feature prominently in the race for cinema's top prizes the Oscars, has been shortlisted for best British independent film, best director (Tom Hooper), best actor (Firth), best supporting actor (Geoffrey Rush and Guy Pearce) and best supporting actress (Helena Bonham Carter).
Alien-themed "Monsters" is one of three films with six nominations each, including four for first-time feature director Gareth Edwards -- best British independent film, best director, best debut director and best technical achievement.
Joining it with six nominations are "Never Let Me Go," based on the novel by Kazuo Ishiguro, and "The Arbor," a portrayal of the late British playwright Andrea Dunbar.
"Four Lions," an edgy comedy about a group of young Muslims preparing to blow themselves up at the London marathon, was shortlisted five times while "Another Year," "Made in Dagenham" and "Brighton Rock" all received four nominations apiece.
Winners of the awards, sponsored by Moet & Chandon champagne, will be announced on December 5.
Following are the nominees in the main categories.
Best British independent film - Four Lions; Kick-Ass; The King's Speech; Monsters; Never Let Me Go
Best director - Mike Leigh/Another Year; Matthew Vaughn/Kick-Ass; Tom Hooper/The King's Speech; Gareth Edwards/Monsters; Mark Romanek/Never Let Me Go
Douglas Hickox Award (best debut director) - Debs Gardner Paterson/Africa United; Clio Barnard/The Arbor; Rowan Joffe/Brighton Rock; Chris Morris/Four Lions; Gareth Edwards/Monsters
Best actress - Manjinder Virk/The Arbor; Ruth Sheen/Another Year; Andrea Riseborough/Brighton Rock; Sally Hawkins/Made In Dagenham; Carey Mulligan/Never Let Me Go
Best actor - Jim Broadbent/Another Year; Riz Ahmed/Four Lions; Colin Firth/The King's Speech; Scoot McNairy/Monsters; Aidan Gillen/Treacle Junior
Best supporting actress - Lesley Manville/Another Year; Helena Bonham Carter/The King's Speech; Rosamund Pike/Made In Dagenham; Keira Knightley/Never Let Me Go; Tamsin Greig/Tamara Drewe
Best supporting actor - Kayvan Novak/Four Lions; Guy Pearce/The King's Speech; Geoffrey Rush/The King's Speech; Bob Hoskins/Made In Dagenham; Andrew Garfield/Never Let Me Go.
Reporting by Mike Collett-White, editing by Paul Casciato