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A drama, a black and white silent film and a coming-out story lead the crop of contenders for the Independent Spirit Awards.
The drama, "The Descendants" won nominations for best direction and screenplay for Alexander Payne.
"Beginners" director Mike Mills will go head-to-head with Payne in both categories.
Mills' film, which is based on his own experience as he dealt with his elderly father coming out of the closet, also won Christopher Plummer a best supporting actor recognition.
Also snagging double nominations for directing and screenwriting is "The Artist" director Michel Hazanavicius.
Michelle Williams, considered a leading Oscar contender, was nominated for "My Week With Marilyn," in which she plays Marilyn Monroe as an actress struggling on the set of the British film "The Prince and the Showgirl."
Williams will go up against Lauren Ambrose in "Think of Me," Rachael Harris in "Natural Selection," Adepero Oduye in "Pariah" and Elizabeth Olsen in "Martha Marcy May Marlene."
The Independent Spirit Awards are a key means for films made outside Hollywood's major studios that are looking to seek recognition in the race for the Oscars.
The winners will be announced on February 25.
Alicia Powell, Reuters.