British Independent Film Awards acting categories become gender neutral


The British Independent Film Awards (BIFA) have made all acting awards gender neutral from this year.

In the 25th year of BIFA, the traditional awards for Best Actress and Supporting Actor have been replaced with Best Lead Performance, Best Supporting Performance, Best Joint Lead Performance – for two (or exceptionally three ) performances that are central to the film – and best overall. BIFA’s Breakthrough Performance Award, sponsored by Netflix, remains unchanged. These changes to the acting categories are permanent.

In addition, BIFA adds a new category of first director – best first director, documentary feature. The Douglas Hickox Award for Best First Director, sponsored by BBC Film, will now be reserved for fiction feature films. The Best Music award, which previously recognized both Original Composition and Music Supervision, will be split into Best Original Music and Best Music Supervision.

BIFA Directors Amy Gustin and Deena Wallace said: “We are very pleased to be able to launch BIFA’s new and expanded award categories which will more fully capture the range of outstanding performance and acting talent in British independent film. and will allow us to celebrate even more talent. than ever before.”

The 2022 nominations will be announced on November 3 and the ceremony will take place on December 4.


Better prospect performance
For Performance in a Leading Role. Up to 10 candidates.

Better support performance
For performance in a supporting role. Up to 10 candidates.

Breakthrough performance sponsored by Netflix
For UK performers taking their first lead or significant supporting role in a theatrical feature film. Five nominees.

Better joint performance of the leaders
For two (or exceptionally three) performances that are the common focus of the film, especially when the performances share a large number of scenes and screen time. Up to five candidates.

Best Collaborative/Collective Performance
For an ensemble performance featuring outstanding lead roles and supporting performers OR two or more performers in supporting roles who share significant stage and screen time. Up to five candidates.


Best First Director – Documentary Feature
For a British director for their first feature documentary. Previous television or fiction feature film credits do not disqualify an individual from consideration.

Best Music Supervision
For films in which the original music constitutes at least 40% of the musical soundtrack of the film.

Best Original Music Sponsored by Universal Music Publishing Group
For films in which the original music constitutes at least 40% of the film’s soundtrack.

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