Sony's animated superhero film "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" was honored as Best Picture of 2018 by film critics in the western U.S. state of Utah, said the Utah Film Critics' Association (UFCA) on Monday.
The film was awarded with Best Picture, Best Animated Feature, and Best Adapted Screenplay by Phil Lord and Rodney Rothman, according to a press release from the UFCA at their annual meeting.
The UFCA is the first film critic organization this year to honor an animated film with its top prize.
"As is true of any film or other creative work, different people will have different reasons for why it works for them or not. I believe the members of our group genuinely voted for the film they believed was the best of the year, and were not limited in their voting by the films they thought they were 'supposed to' consider worthy of awards, or by thinking that an animated film must be artistically inferior to a live-action drama," wrote Scott Renshaw, President of the UFCA, in an email to Xinhua.
"Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" sprinted to the top of North American box office with a solid 35.36 million U.S. dollars last weekend, scoring the best December opening ever for an animated film in North America, according to studio figures collected by measurement firm Comscore.
Based on the Marvel Comics character Miles Morales, the family action-adventure film was directed by the trio of Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey and Rodney Rothman. The film, costing a reported 90 million dollars to make, received positive reviews from moviegoers and critics with an "A+" on CinemaScore and an impressive 97 percent Certified Fresh rating on the film review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes.
Racking up plaudits in this Hollywood awards season, the movie has been named the Best Animated Film of 2018 by the New York Film Critics Circle (NYFCC) and has been nominated for the Best Animated Feature film at the 76th Golden Globe Awards and 24th Critics' Choice Awards.
"Roma" also received three awards from the UFCA, including Best Director, Best Cinematography and Best Non-English Language Feature. The film has been selected as the Mexican entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 91st Academy Awards.
In performance categories, Elsie Fisher took the Best Lead Performance, Female award for the comedy drama "Eighth Grade" while Ethan Hawke was named in the Best Lead Performance, Male category for the drama film "First Reformed."
The UFCA consists of Utah-based film journalists contributing to print, broadcast and online outlets.