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Chicago Music Box Films’ scores in Indy Spirit nominations

Chicago-based Music Box Films won bragging rights when the 28th annual Independent Spirit Awards nominations came out Tuesday.

Three of its films, “Keep the Lights On,” “Marina Abramovic: The Artist Is Present” and “Starlet,” picked up a total of seven nominations. That tally means Music Box Films received more nominations than any other independent distributor. In addition, it placed second to the studio-affiliated Fox Searchlight in total nominations.

In a statement, Music Box Films’ Bill Schopf said, “We would like to congratulate all of the filmmakers for their well-deserved recognition. This is especially gratifying for Music Box Films as 2012 marks our first foray into the distribution of American independent films.”

Ira Sachs’ drama “Keep the Lights On,” is competing for best feature, director, screenplay and male lead (Thure Lindhardt). Matthew Akers’ “Marina Abramovic: The Artist Is Present” is up for best documentary. Sean Baker’s “Starlet,” which opens Dec. 7 in Chicago, is a nominee for the John Cassavetes Award, which goes to the best feature made for less than $500,000. In addition, the film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast will receive the Robert Altman Award.

Leading the pack with five nominations each are Wes Anderson’s “Moonrise Kingdom” and David O. Russell’s “Silver Linings Playbook.”

The Independent Spirit Awards will be announced Feb. 23 during a live telecast on the IFC cable channel.

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