AFI Announces 2009 Selections: 10 Outstanding Motion Pictures and TV Programs of the Year

     December 13, 2009

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The American Film Institute (AFI) just announced their official selections for the 2009 AFI Awards.  Unlike some end of the year lists that only focus on film, AFI selects 10 outstanding TV Shows to go along with their 10 films. Also, unlike some end of the year lists that only focus on the “serious” films, credit most be given to AFI for making The Hangover one of their 10 outstanding films of 2009.  I think we can all agree it was a great movie that everyone enjoyed.

While you are about to overwhelmed by a ton of different groups releasing what they think are the best movies of 2009, if you have limited time and are a movie fan, my recommendation is to seek out which films are on everyone’s list.  After all, if every group of cranky critics says a movie is a top ten film, it probably is.

AFI’s top films are The Hurt Locker, Coraline, The Hangover, The Messenger, Precious, A Serious Man, A Single Man, Sugar, Up, and Up In The Air. They have the top TV shows as The Big Bang Theory, Big Love, Friday Night Lights, Glee, Mad Men, Modern Family, The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, Nurse Jackie, Party Down, and True Blood.

Hit the jump for the full AFI press release:

AFI MOVIES OF THE YEAR-OFFICIAL SELECTIONS

CORALINE

THE HANGOVER

THE HURT LOCKER

THE MESSENGER

PRECIOUS: BASED ON THE NOVEL ‘PUSH’ BY SAPPHIRE

A SERIOUS MAN

A SINGLE MAN

SUGAR

UP

UP IN THE AIR

AFI TV PROGRAMS OF THE YEAR-OFFICIAL SELECTIONS

THE BIG BANG THEORY

BIG LOVE

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS

GLEE

MAD MEN

MODERN FAMILY

THE NO. 1 LADIES’ DETECTIVE AGENCY

NURSE JACKIE

PARTY DOWN

TRUE BLOOD

LOS ANGELES, December 13, 2009-American Film Institute (AFI) today announced the official selections of AFI AWARDS 2009, AFI’s almanac that records the year’s most outstanding achievements in film and television, as well as significant moments in the world of the moving image.

AFI AWARDS is the only recognition that honors the film and television creative ensembles as a whole-those both in front of and behind the camera-acknowledging the collaborative nature of film and television.

Unlike any other film or television award, the AFI AWARDS 2009 selections are made through AFI’s unique 13-person jury process in which scholars, film artists, critics and AFI trustees discuss, debate and determine the most outstanding achievements of the year, as well as provide a detailed rationale for each selection. Two AFI juries-one for motion pictures and one for television-convened in Los Angeles for two days of deliberations at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel. The jurors have remained confidential until today. (Complete list is below.)

AFI will honor the creative ensembles for each of the selections at a luncheon sponsored by Hewlett-Packard on Friday, January 15, 2010.

Once again, HP has created scholarships for the AFI Conservatory in conjunction with their support of the AFI AWARDS.  The AFI Conservatory is world-renowned for its advanced training of the next generation of storytellers.

“AFI AWARDS 2009 is the tenth chapter in a century-long program to honor the artists and their work,” said Bob Gazzale, AFI President & CEO.  “This program celebrates the creative community – not competition – and it is in this spirit that the institute brings America’s storytellers together to acknowledge their contributions to our nation’s rich cultural heritage.”

The honorees are listed below in alphabetical order:

Additional information and video of the honorees can be found at www.afi.com/afiawards.

AFI AWARDS 2009 JURORS

AFI JURY FOR MOTION PICTURES

Norman Jewison

Chair, AFI Awards Jury for Motion Pictures

Director/Producer

Sean Astin

Actor

Dustin Lance Black

Writer/Director/Producer

Leo Braudy

University of Southern California

Mark Harris

Author

Entertainment Weekly/New York Magazine

Patty Jenkins

Director/Producer

Leonard Maltin

ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT

Elvis Mitchell

THE TREATMENT

Chon Noriega

University of California, Los Angeles

Tom Pollock

Producer

Chair Emeritus, AFI Board of Trustees

Claudia Puig

USA Today

Richard Schickel

Historian/Author/Documentary Filmmaker

Lisa Schwarzbaum

Entertainment Weekly

AFI JURY FOR TELEVISION

Neal Baer

Chair, AFI Jury for Television

Writer/Producer

Stanley Brooks

Producer

Bambi Haggins

Arizona State University

L.S. Kim

University of California, Santa Cruz

Brian Lowry

Variety

David Milch

Writer/Producer

Lisa Parks

University of California, Santa Barbara

CCH Pounder

Actor

Matt Roush

TV Guide Magazine

Maureen Ryan

Chicago Tribune

Ellen Seiter

University of Southern California

John Shaffner

President, Academy of Television Arts & Sciences

Robert J. Thompson

Syracuse University

CRITERIA

Each year, AFI AWARDS honors excellence in American film and television by recognizing the creative ensembles that collaborate to create the year’s outstanding movies and television programs, all of which best advanced the art of the moving image; enhanced the rich cultural heritage of America’s art form; inspired audiences and artists alike; and/or made a mark on American society.

AFI will consider eligible any film that fulfills the following criteria:
FEATURE-LENGTH MOTION PICTURE

Narrative fiction format, over 60 minutes in length.

AMERICAN
Motion picture with significant creative and/or production elements from the United States. The motion picture need not be presented in the English language if it is incontrovertibly American.

THEATRICALLY-RELEASED
Motion pictures originally released between January 1, 2009, and December 31, 2009, which have premiered in a commercial theater and screened for at least five consecutive days in Los Angeles or New York City.

AFI will consider eligible any television program that fulfills the following criteria:

TELEVISION PROGRAM

Narrative fiction format, originated for television as either a series, movie or mini-series.

AMERICAN

English language programs with significant creative and/or production elements from the United States.

BROADCAST

First-run programs airing for American audiences on network or cable television between January 1, 2009, and December 31, 2009.  Only programs broadcast Monday through Saturday, between 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. Eastern/Pacific, and Sundays, between 7 p.m. and 11 p.m. Eastern/Pacific, are eligible.

About the American Film Institute

AFI is a national institute providing leadership in screen education and the recognition and celebration of excellence in the art of film, television and digital media.

AFI trains the next generation of filmmakers at its world-renowned AFI Conservatory, preserves the legacy of America’s film heritage through the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and AFI Archives, explores new digital technologies at the AFI Digital Content Lab and honors artists and their work through a variety of programs and special events.

For 37 years, the AFI Life Achievement Award has remained the highest honor for a career in film. AFI also honors the most outstanding motion pictures and television programs of the year at AFI Awards, the institute’s almanac for the 21st century, while AFI’s 100 Years… series has introduced and reintroduced classic American movies to millions of film lovers.  And as the largest nonprofit exhibitor in the United States, AFI’s festivals include AFI FEST presented by Audi in Los Angeles and AFI-Discovery Channel SILVERDOCS documentary film festival in Silver Spring, Maryland. AFI exhibition also offers year-round programming at the ArcLight Cinemas and Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles and the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in the Washington DC, area. Additional information about AFI is available at AFI.com.

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