After Charlotte Wells’ sweltering debut Aftersun took home Best British Independent Film at the BIFA’s last year, it was clear that the next batch of nominees would have big boots to fill. Thankfully, though, it’s not only been a good year for British film, but a particularly great year for the British independents. 

In January, Raine Allen-Miller brought the rom-com back to the Old Smoke with her Peckham-set Rye Lane, which was immediately lauded by critics and audiences for its vibrant, authentic portrayal of present-day London and its youth culture. Also nominated, releasing this week is Molly Manning Walker’s How To Have Sex, a mature debut that turns a girl group’s party holiday to Greece into a harrowing lesson on the intricacies of  consent How To Have Sex  also earned the first-time filmmaker award Un Certain Regard at this year’s Cannes Film Fest (you can read our review of the film here, and our profile with Molly here.)

Molly manning walker
How To Have Sex (dir. Molly Manning Walker)
Rye Lane
Rye Lane (dir. Raine Allen-Miller)

Clearly the stellar reputation Rye Lane and How To Have Sex have crafted for themselves has stuck, as both features have been nominated for Best British Independent Film at this year’s BIFA awards, garnering 16 and 13 nominations respectively. Joining them are Charlotte Regan with her film Scrapper, Sam H. Freeman’s Femme, and Andrew Haigh’s devastatingly beautiful queer ghost story All of Us Strangers.

All of us strangers
All of Us Strangers (dir. Andrew Haigh)

Elsewhere, it’s a pleasure to see Chloe Abrahams’s deeply personal documentary The Taste of Mango earn her a nomination for Best Debut Director-Feature Documentary, as well as a few nods to the fantastic performances by Ritu Arya and Priya Kansara in Polite Society. International Independent Feature is predictably stacked, with Justine Triet’s Palme-winner Anatomy of A Fall and Celine Song’s much-beloved Past Lives leading the charge alongside Hirokazu Koreeda’s Monster Aki Kaurismaki’s Fallen Leaves and Babak Jalali’s Fremont. However, every awards show must come with its share of snubs, and this year’s big omission is Luna Carmoon’s Hoard, which staggered audiences at Venice Film Festival this year and that we would recommend seeking out upon its release early next year. 

Find a full list of the nominees below, and stay tuned for a full winner’s list after the ceremony on 3rd December 2023…

Best British Independent Film

  • All Of Us Strangers – Andrew Haigh, Graham Broadbent, Pete Czernin, Sarah Harvey
  • Femme – Sam H Freeman, Ng Choon Ping, Myles Payne, Sam Ritzenberg
  • How To Have Sex – Molly Manning Walker, Ivana MacKinnon, Emily Leo, Konstantinos Kontovrakis
  • Rye Lane – Raine Allen-Miller, Nathan Bryon, Tom Melia, Yvonne Isimeme Ibazebo, Damian Jones
  • Scrapper – Charlotte Regan, Theo Barrowclough

Best International Independent Film

  • Anatomy Of A Fall – Justine Triet, Arthur Harari, Marie-Ange Luciani, David Thion
  • Fallen Leaves – Aki Kauriskmäki
  • Fremont – Babak Jalali, Carolina Cavalli, Marjaneh Moghimi, Sudnya Shroff, Rachael Fung
  • Monster – Hirokazu Kore-eda, Yuji Sakamoto, Genki Kawamura, Kenji Yamada
  • Past Lives – Celine Song, David Hinojosa, Christine Vachon, Pamela Koffler

Best Director

  • Raine Allen-Miller – Rye Lane
  • Sam H Freeman, Ng Choon Ping – Femme
  • Andrew Haigh – All Of Us Strangers
  • Molly Manning Walker – How To Have Sex
  • Charlotte Regan – Scrapper

Best Screenplay

  • Nathan Bryon, Tom Melia – Rye Lane
  • Sam H Freeman, Ng Choon Ping – Femme
  • Andrew Haigh – All Of Us Strangers
  • Molly Manning Walker – How To Have Sex
  • Charlotte Regan – Scrapper

Best Lead Performance

  • Jodie Comer – The End We Start From
  • Mia McKenna-Bruce – How To Have Sex
  • Tia Nomore – Earth Mama
  • Nabhaan Rizwan – In Camera
  • Andrew Scott – All Of Us Strangers
  • Tilda Swinton – The Eternal Daughter

Best Supporting Performance

  • Ritu Aryu – Polite Society
  • Jamie Bell – All Of Us Strangers
  • Samuel Bottomley – How To Have Sex
  • Alexandra Burke – Pretty Red Dress
  • Amir El-Masry – In Camera
  • Claire Foy – All Of Us Strangers
  • Paul Mescal – All Of Us Strangers
  • Alia Shawkat – Drift
  • Shaun Thomas – How To Have Sex
  • Katherine Waterston – The End We Start From

Best Joint Lead Performance

  • Lola Campbell, Harris Dickinson – Scrapper
  • David Jonsson, Vivian Oparah – Rye Lane
  • Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, George MacKay – Femme

The Douglas Hickox Award (Best Debut Director)

  • Raine Allen-Miller – Rye Lane
  • Sam H Freeman, Ng Choon Ping – Femme
  • Savanah Leaf – Earth Mama
  • Molly Manning Walker – How To Have Sex
  • Charlotte Regan – Scrapper

Breakthrough Producer

  • Theo Barrowclough – Scrapper
  • Georgia Goggin – Pretty Red Dress
  • Yvonne Isimeme Ibazebo – Rye Lane
  • [Also Produced By Damian Jones]
  • Gannesh Rajah – If The Streets Were On Fire
  • Chi Thai – Raging Grace

Breakthrough Performance

  • Le’Shantey Bonsu – Girl
  • Lola Campbell – Scrapper
  • Priya Kansara – Polite Society
  • Mia McKenna-Bruce – How To Have Sex
  • Vivian Oparah – Rye Lane

Best Debut Screenwriter

  • Nathan Bryon, Tom Melia – Rye Lane
  • Sam H Freeman, Ng Choon Ping – Femme
  • Molly Manning Walker – How To Have Sex
  • Nida Manzoor – Polite Society
  • Charlotte Regan – Scrapper

Best Debut Director – Feature Documentary

  • Chloe Abrahams – The Taste Of Mango
  • Sophie Compton, Reuben Hamlyn – Another Body
  • Ella Glendining – Is There Anybody Out There?
  • Alice Russell – If The Streets Were On Fire
  • Christopher Sharp – Bobi Wine: The People’s President [Also Directed By Moses Bwayo]

The Raindance Maverick Award

  • If The Streets Were On Fire – Alice Russell, Gannesh Rajah
  • Is There Anybody Out There? – Ella Glendining, Janine Marmot
  • Name Me Lawand – Edward Lovelace
  • Raging Grace – Paris Zarcilla, Chi Thai
  • Red Herring – Kit Vincent, Ed Owles

Best Feature Documentary

  • Another Body – Sophie Compton, Reuben Hamlyn, Isabel Freeman, Elizabeth Woodward
  • Bobi Wine: The People’s President – Moses Bwayo, Christopher Sharp, John Battsek
  • If The Streets Were On Fire – Alice Russell, Gannesh Rajah
  • Lyra – Alison Millar, Jackie Doyle
  • Occupied City – Steve Mcqueen, Bianca Stitger, Floor Onrust, Anna Smith-Tenser

Best British Short Film

  • Christopher At Sea – Tom C J Brown, Laure Desmazières, Emmanuel-Alain Raynal, Pierre Baussaron, Amanda Miller, Hannah Stolarski, Nick Read, Emily-Jane Brown
  • Festival Of Slaps – Abdou Cissé, Cheri Darbon, George Telfer
  • Lions – Beru Tessema, Ama Ampadu
  • Muna – Warda Mohamed, Angela Moneke, Simon Hatton
  • The Talent – Thomas May Bailey, Emma D’arcy, Ellen Spence

Best Casting

  • Shaheen Baig – Scrapper
  • Kharmel Cochrane – Rye Lane
  • Kahleen Crawford – All Of Us Strangers
  • Isabella Odoffin – How To Have Sex
  • Salome Oggenfuss, Geraldine Barón, Abby Harri – Earth Mama

Best Cinematography

  • Olan Collardy – Rye Lane
  • Suzie Lavelle – The End We Start From
  • Molly Manning Walker – Scrapper
  • Jamie D. Ramsay – All Of Us Strangers
  • James Rhodes – Femme

Best Costume Design

  • George Buxton – How To Have Sex
  • Oliver Cronk – Scrapper
  • Buki Ebiesuwa – Femme
  • Cynthia Lawrence-John – Rye Lane
  • PC Williams – The End We Start From

Best Editing

  • Jonathan Alberts – All Of Us Strangers
  • Victoria Boydell – Rye Lane
  • Paul Carlin – Bobi Wine: The People’s President
  • Avdhesh Mohla – High & Low – John Galliano
  • Arttu Salmi – The End We Start From

Best Effects

  • Paddy Eason – Polite Society
  • Theodor Flo-Groeneboom – The End We
  • Start From
  • Jonathan Gales, Richard Baker – The Kitchen

Best Music Supervision

  • Ciara Elwis – Femme
  • Connie Farr – All Of Us Strangers
  • David Fish – Rye Lane

Best Make-Up & Hair Design

  • Zoe Clare Brown – All Of Us Strangers
  • Claire Carter – Polite Society
  • Marie Deehan – Femme
  • Natasha Lawes – How To Have Sex
  • Bianca Simone Scott – Rye Lane

Best Original Music

  • Adam Janota Bzowski – Femme
  • Patrick Jonsson – Scrapper
  • Kwes – Rye Lane
  • Anna Meredith – The End We Start From
  • Ré Olunuga – Girl

Best Production Design

  • Laura Ellis Cricks – The End We Start From
  • Sarah Finlay – All Of Us Strangers
  • Elena Muntoni – Scrapper
  • Nathan Parker – The Kitchen
  • Anna Rhodes – Rye Lane

Best Sound

  • Ben Baird, Jack Wensley, Adam Fletcher, Alexej Mungersdorff – Scrapper
  • Steve Fanagan – How To Have Sex
  • Stevie Haywood, Joakim Sundström, Per Bostrom – All Of Us Strangers
  • Mark Jenkin – Enys Men
  • Jens Rosenlund-Petersen, Amy Felton, Joe Jackson, Tim Cavagin, Lori Dovi – The End We Start From