Martin Scorsese's sprawling crime epic “The Irishman” has been named best picture by the National Board of Review.
The awards, announced Tuesday by the National Board of Review, handed Netflix its second major honor in Hollywood's quickening awards season. On Monday evening, Noah Baumbach's “Marriage Story” won best feature at the IFP Gotham Awards, which honor independent film. Both movies are widely expected to eventually reap numerous nominations at the Oscars, with either potentially landing Netflix its first best-picture win.
“The Irishman” also took best adapted screenplay, for Steven Zaillian's script, and an icon award for Scorsese, Robert De Niro and Al Pacino.
The board, as it typically does, otherwise spread its awards around to help fill its annual gala with stars. Quentin Tarantino took best director for “Once Upon a Time in ... Hollywood." Best actress went to Renée Zellweger for her performance as Judy Garland in “Judy.” Adam Sandler won best actor for Josh and Benny Safdie's upcoming New York thriller “Uncut Gems."
Brad Pitt, widely seen as the Oscar front-runner for his co-leading performance in “Once Upon a Time in ... Hollywood," won best supporting actor. The National Board of Review also threw its support behind Clint Eastwood's upcoming docudrama on the 1996 Centennial Olympic Park bombing, “Richard Jewell," giving it best supporting actress for Kathy Bates and breakthrough performance for Paul Walter Hauser.
The picks by the National Board of Review, a long-running organization composed of academics and film professionals, have in recent years seldom lined up with eventual Academy Awards winners. But its best-feature choice last year, “Green Book," went on to triumph at the Oscars.