NBR: ‘Quills,’ Roberts Year’s Best

Let the awards season begin!

The National Board of Review of Motion Pictures, one of the Industry’s high-profile Oscar indicators, has announced its top film picks this year, with the Marquis de Sade tale “Quills” nabbing the best film nod and helmer Steven Soderbergh earning the title of best director for films “Erin Brockovich” and the upcoming “Traffic” with newlyweds Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

The best actress nod went to “Brockovich” star Julia Roberts, and “Before Night Falls‘” Javier Bardem, who played exile Cuban writer Reinaldo Arenas, picked up the best actor award.

As to the supporting role categories, Joaquin Phoenix was named best supporting male for his work in “The Yards,” “Gladiator” and “Quills,” and Lupe Ontiveros scored the best supporting female nod for the indie film “Chuck and Buck.”

Ang Lee‘s martial-arts flick “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” starring Chow Yun-Fat was named best foreign film, and DreamWorks’ hit “Chicken Run” was named best animated film.

The Board last year selected “American Beauty” as best film and “All About My Mother” as best foreign film. Both films went on to win Oscars for the same award.

Here’s the National Board of Review’s Top 10 films of the year:

1. “Quills

2. “Traffic”

3. “Croupier

4. “You Can Count On Me

5. “Billy Elliot

6. “Before Night Falls

7. “Gladiator”

8. “Wonder Boys

9. “Sunshine”

10. “Dancer in the Dark