The 3rd Hollywood Persona Awards


Here’s to the ones who dream
Foolish as they may seem

Welcome all to the Third annual Hollywood Persona Awards, Where we celebrate the best in film. If you’re looking for the worst of 2016, click here!

I, Mitch Burns, work Tirelessly throughout the year to watch as many movies as possible; with two kids, one of which came this year, that’s not always an easy task. Some films I missed this year are Miss Sloane, Rules don’t Apply, Queen of Katwe, Toni Erdmann, The Sea of Trees, Paterson and Knight of Cups. It does bother me, but I can’t watch them all.

Let’s run through all the categories we will be awarding In this article:*

  • Best Films of the Year
  • Best Director
  • Best Male Actor – Lead
  • Best Female Actor – Lead
  • Best Female Actor – Supporting
  • Best Male Actor – Supporting
  • Best Ensemble
  • Best Young Actor
  • Best Newcomer/Breakout Performance
  • Best Animated Film
  • Cinematography
  • Costume Design
  • Editing
  • Writing – Original Screenplay
  • Writing – Adapted Screenplay
  • Makeup & Hair styling
  • Music – Original Score
  • Music – Best original song
  • Production Design
  • Visual Effects
  • Best Blockbuster
  • Best Comedy
  • Best Horror
  • Best Voice Acting
  • Best Characters in a Movie

*No one Actually gets an award

Most categories are in order of the top 5 or top 10, the first on the list being the best, some categories have honorable mentions.

I’ll take this opportunity to say thank you to all my readers, I’m sticking with it.

Without Further ado, here are the winners (and runner-ups) of the Hollywood Persona Awards.

Best Films of the Year

Let’s begin with my top films of the year. 2016 was a bummer of a year, the films I expected to be great were not, my favorite of the year are films I didn’t see coming. 2016 boasted lackluster films from The Coen Bros., Antoine Fuqua and Woody Allen. Most blockbusters and Comedies from 2016 were worse than could have been foreseen.

2016 seems to belong to the unforeseen indies, and smaller fare. While films from Denis Villeneuve and Damien Chazelle could have been expected, Green Room, Sing Street, and Hunt for the Wilderpeople were welcome surprises.

Arrival takes my number one spot, my top three could very well have shaken up at any moment, any one of them could have landed in the number one spot. Arrival takes it for it’s sheer uniqueness and heartfelt emotion. Arrival is a film that will be talked about for years to come, as are the other two, but a great Sci-fi film is hard to come by.

If you have seen all the films on my lists I think you’ll understand their placement. If you haven’t seen them, I suggest you watch them, I guarantee they will evoke something. See beyond my number 10 for more honorable mentions, films that may have been on my top ten at one point in the year.

  1. Arrival
  2. Moonlight
  3. La La Land
  4. Nocturnal Animals
  5. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  6. Green Room
  7. Sing Street
  8. Hunt for the Wilderpeople
  9. Manchester by the Sea
  10. Don’t Think Twice

Honorable Mentions:

  1. Kubo and the Two Strings
  2. Captain Fantastic
  3. Hacksaw Ridge
  4. The Edge of Seventeen
  5. Deadpool
  6. Zootopia
  7. 10 Cloverfield Lane
  8. A Monster Calls
  9. The Neon Demon
  10. Moana
  11. 20th Century Women
  12. Tickled
  13. American Honey
  14. Lion
  15. Tower
  16. Deepwater Horizon
  17. Don’t Breathe
  18. The Light Between Oceans
  19. The Accountant
  20. The Wave

Honorable Mentions: Loving, Pete’s Dragon, Hell or High Water The Girl with All the Gifts, Train to Busan, The Ivory Game, King Jack, The Witch, The Jungle Book

Best Director –

Chazelle created something so breathtaking, so astounding, modern yet had a feeling of a bygone era. The movie, like his previous film Whiplash, must have taken blood sweat and tears to create.

  1. Damien Chazelle – La La Land (Winner)
    Runner-ups (In order)
  2. Barry Jenkins – Moonlight
  3. Denis Villeneuve – Arrival
  4. Derek Cianfrance – The Light between Oceans
  5. Tom Ford – Nocturnal Animals
  6. Tim Miller – Deadpool
  7. Jeremy Saulnier – Green Room
  8. Kenneth Lonergan – Manchester by the Sea
  9. Travis Knight – Kubo and the Two Strings
  10. John Carney – Sing Street

Best Male Actor – Lead

If we can separate the art from the artist, It’s safe to say that Casey Affleck gave the best performance of the year, hands down.

  1. Casey Affleck – Manchester by the Sea
  2. Ryan Gosling – La La Land
  3. Viggo Mortenson – Captain Fantastic
  4. Joel Edgerton – Loving
  5. Ryan Reynolds – Deadpool
  6. Denzel Washington – Fences
  7. Jake Gyllenhaal – Nocturnal Animals
  8. Shia Lebouf – American Honey
  9. Michael Fassbender – The Light Between Oceans
  10. Andrew Garfield – Silence

Honorable Mentions: Lewis MacDougall – A Monster Calls,Andrew Garfield – Hacksaw Ridge, Andrew Garfield – Silence, Ben Affleck – The Accountant, Colin Farrel – The Lobster, Joseph Gorden Levitt – Snowden, Julian Dennison – Hunt for the Wilderpeople, Paul Dano – Swiss Army Man, Taron Egerton – Eddie The Eagle, Tom Hanks – Sully

Best Female Actor – Lead

In my opinion, there is no Arrival without Amy Adams, Adams gave the film its heart. It’s crazy to think that every woman in my top six is deserving of the Oscar, it could go to any of them and I would be happy. Portman gives the best performance of her career, She probably did the most heavy lifting out of the bunch, yet Stone and Adams outrank her.

  1. Amy Adams – Arrival
  2. Emma Stone – La La Land
  3. Natalie Portman – Jackie
  4. Annette Benning – 20th Century Women
  5. Viola Davis – Fences
  6. Ruth Negga – Loving
  7. Isabelle Huppert – Elle
  8. Taraji P. Henson – Hidden Figures
  9. Amy Adams – Nocturnal Animals
  10. Elle Fanning – The Neon Demon

Honorable Mentions: Hailee Steinfeld – Edge of Seventeen, Blake Lively – The Shallows, Emily Blunt – The Girl on the Train, Felicity Jones – Rogue one: A Star Wars Story, Jane Levy – Don’t Breathe, Meryl Streep – Florence Foster Jenkins, Sasha Lane – American Honey, Shailene Woodley – Snowden

Best Female Actor – Supporting

I’ve found myself having trouble with this category, this year and in the past, as when women  are antiquated to a supporting role they aren’t given as much to do as their male counterparts in a supporting role. My list of male supporting roles are stronger performances, It’s hard to believe that Spencer was even nominated for her performance in Hidden Figures, and Michelle Williams has very little screen time. The Academy seems to have brushed over 20th Century woman, as Gerwig and Benning both gave terrific performances, but the year belongs to Harris and her incredible work in Moonlight.

  1. Naomie Harris – Moonlight
  2. Nicole Kidman – Lion
  3. Greta Gerwig – 20th Century Women
  4. Felicity Jones – A Monster Calls
  5. Michelle Williams – Manchester by the Sea
  6. Sigourney Weaver – A Monster Calls
  7. Elle Fanning – 20th Century Women
  8. Octavia Spencer – Hidden Figures
  9. Anya Taylor-Joy – The Witch
  10. Janelle Monae – Moonlight

Honorable Mentions: Jena Malone – The Neon Demon, Janelle Monae – Hidden Figures, Hayley Bennet – The Girl on the Train, Kirsten Dunst – Hidden Figures, Margo Martindale – The Hollars, Rebecca Ferguson – The Girl on the Train

Best Male Actor – Supporting

Mahershala Ali kind of came out of nowhere and delivered a swoonworthy, memorable performance in Moonlight, a film full of terrific performances. Aaron Taylor-Johnson, who I’ve had mixed feelings for before, gives an amazing performance in Nocturnal Animals, it’s too bad him and Shannon couldn’t have gotten the nomination for an Oscar.

  1. Mahershala Ali – Moonlight
  2. Aaron Taylor-Johnson – Nocturnal Animals
  3. Michael Shannon – Nocturnal Animals
  4. John Goodman – 10 Cloverfield Lane
  5. Lucas Hedges – Manchester by the Sea
  6. Jeff Bridges – Hell or High Water
  7. Sam Neil – Hunt for the Wilderpeople
  8. Trevante Rhodes – Moonlight
  9. Ashton Sanders – Moonlight
  10. Hugo Weaving – Hacksaw Ridge

Honorable Mentions: Ben Foster – Hell or High Water, Chris Pine – Hell or High Water, Daniel Radcliffe – Swiss Army Man, Jovan Adepo – Fences, Michael Fassbender – X-men: Apocalypse, Stephen Henderson – Fences, Stephen Lang – Don’t Breathe, Thomas Jane – The Veil, Vince Vaughn – Hacksaw Ridge, Zac Efron – Neighbors 2

Best Ensemble –

Harris, Monae, Ali, Rhodes, Sanders, etc. almost every performance in Moonlight is Awards worthy.

  1. Moonlight
  2. Sing Street
  3. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  4. Manchester by the Sea
  5. Captain Fantastic
  6. Hacksaw Ridge
  7. Hidden Figures
  8. Hell or High Water
  9. Nocturnal Animals
  10. Don’t Think Twice

Best Young Actor –

The actor playing the lead character in A Monster calls makes or breaks that film, and MacDougall Makes it. His performance had to be heartfelt, without overacting, emotional without being whiny, and he nailed it.

  1. Lewis MacDougall – A Monster Calls
  2. Sunny Pawar – Lion
  3. Neel Sethi – The Jungle Book
  4. Julian Dennison – Hunt for the Wilderpeople
  5. Ferdia Walsh-Peelo – Sing Street
  6. Lucas Jade Zumann – 20th Century Women
  7. Alex Hebert – Moonlight
  8. Kelly Thornton – Sing Street
  9. Oakes Fegley – Pete’s Dragon
  10. Angourie Rice – The Nice Guys
  11. Lulu Wilson – Ouija: Origin of Evil
  12. Jaeden Lieberher – Midnight Special

Best  Newcomer/Breakout Performance-

My list here is alphabetical, hard to pick who “Broke Out” the most, I think we’ll see as these actors below make an appearance in more and more films.

  • Alex Hebert – Moonlight
  • Angourie Rice – The Nice Guys
  • Ashton Sanders – Moonlight
  • Ferdia Walsh-Peelo – Sing Street
  • Haley Lu Richardson – Edge of Seventeen
  • Julian Dennison – Hunt for the Wilderpeople
  • Kelly Thornton – Sing Street
  • Lewis MacDougall – A Monster Calls
  • Neel Sethi – The Jungle Book
  • Oakes Fegley – Pete’s Dragon
  • Sunny Pawar – Lion
  • Tami Sagher – Don’t Think Twice

Best Animated Film –


  1. Kubo and the Two Strings
  2. Moana
  3. Zootopia
  4. Finding Dory
  5. The Secret Life of Pets
  6. Kung Fu Panda 3
  7. Storks
  8. Sing
  9. Trolls
  10. The Angry Birds Movie

Cinematography –

  1. Moonlight
  2. Arrival
  3. Nocturnal Animals
  4. La La Land
  5. Manchester by the Sea
  6. Hacksaw Ridge
  7. Lion
  8. American Honey
  9. The Light Between Oceans
  10. Loving

Costume Design –

  1. La La Land
  2. Nocturnal Animals
  3. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  4. Sing Street
  5. Hacksaw Ridge
  6. The Light Between Oceans
  7. Jackie
  8. The Witch
  9. Hidden Figures
  10. 20th Century Women

Editing –

  1. Moonlight
  2. La La Land
  3. Nocturnal Animals
  4. Manchester by the Sea
  5. Arrival
  6. Jackie
  7. Deepwater Horizon
  8. Hardcore Henry
  9. Hunt for the Wilderpeople
  10. 20th Century Women

Writing – Original Screenplay

  1. 20th Century Women
  2. Manchester by the Sea
  3. The Lobster
  4. Don’t Think Twice
  5. Sing Street

Writing – Adapted Screenplay

  1. Arrival
  2. Moonlight
  3. Deadpool
  4. Nocturnal Animals
  5. Hunt for the Wilderpeople

Makeup & Hairstyling

  1. Deadpool
  2. The Neon Demon
  3. X-Men: Apocalypse
  4. Jackie
  5. Hacksaw Ridge
  6. La La Land
  7. Star Trek: Beyond
  8. Suicide Squad
  9. Swiss Army Man
  10. The Witch

Music – Original Score

  1. La La Land
  2. Manchester by the Sea
  3. Lion
  4. Arrival
  5. Jackie

Honorable Mentions: Moonlight, Kubo and the Two Strings

Music – Best original song

  1. “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” by Emma Stone – From La La Land
  2. “Drive it like You Stole it” by Sing Street – From Sing Street
  3. “Never Give up” by Sia – From Lion
  4. “Up” by Sing Street – From Sing Street
  5. “How Far I’ll Go” Auli’I Cravalho or Alessia Cara – From Moana
  6. “Shiny” by Jemaine Clement – From Moana
  7. “City of Stars” by Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone – From La La Land
  8. “Try Everything” by Shakira – From Zootopia
  9. “Start a Fire” by John Legend – From La La Land
  10. “Another Day of Sun” by La La Land Cast – From La La Land

Honorable Mentions: “Can’t Stop the Feeling” by Justin Timberlake – From Trolls, “Good Girls” by Elle King – From Ghostbusters, “Heathens” by Twenty-One Pilots – From Suicide Squad, “Just Like Fire” by Pink – From Alice through the Looking Glass, “Not Today” by Imagine Dragons – From Me before You, “Someone in the Crowd” by La La Land Cast – From La La Land, “You’re Welcome” by Dwayne Johnson – From Moana

Production Design –

  1. La La Land
  2. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  3. Kubo and the Two Strings
  4. The Light Between Oceans
  5. Jackie

Visual Effects –

  1. The Jungle Book
  2. Arrival
  3. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  4. A Monster Calls
  5. Deepwater Horizon

Honorable Mentions: The Wave (Bolgen), Sully, X-Men: Apocalypse, Captain America: Civil War,

Best Blockbuster (Action, Sci-Fi, Superhero, etc.) –

  1. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  2. Deadpool
  3. The Accountant
  4. Hardcore Henry
  5. X-Men: Apocalypse
  6. Civil War: Captain America

Best Comedy –

  1. Don’t Think Twice
  2. The Edge of Seventeen
  3. Deadpool
  4. The Nice Guys
  5. Neighbours 2

Best Horror –

  1. Green Room
  2. 10 Cloverfield Lane
  3. The Neon Demon
  4. Don’t Breathe
  5. Train to Busan
  6. The Witch
  7. Ouija: Origin of Evil
  8. The Conjuring 2
  9. Lights Out
  10. Hush

Best Voice Acting –

  1. Ginnifer Goodwin as Officer Judy Hops – Zootopia
  2. Dwayne Johnson as Maui – Moana
  3. Alan Tudyk as K-2S0 – Rogue One: a Star Wars Story
  4. Auli’I Cravalho as Moana – Moana
  5. Art Parkinson as Kubo – Kubo and the Two Strings
  6. Liam Neeson as The Monster – A Monster Calls
  7. Jason Bateman as Nick Wilde – Zootopia
  8. Zooey Deschanel as Bridget – Trolls
  9. Ben Kingsley as Bagheera – The Jungle Book
  10. Andy Samberg as junior – Storks

Honorable Mentions: Ellen DeGeneres as Dory – Finding Dory, Mark Rylance as The BFG – The BFG, Taron Edgerton as Johnny – Sing

10 Best Character in a Movie –

  1. DeadPool (Ryan Gosling) – Deadpool
  2. Chirrut Imew (Donnie Yen) – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  3. Bobby Andes (Michael Shannon) – Nocturnal Animals
  4. Brendan (Jack Reynor) – Sing Street
  5. Hank (Ed O’neill) – Finding Dory
  6. Juan (Mahershala Ali) – Monlight
  7. Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  8. K-2S0 (Alan Tudyk) – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  9. Officer Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) – Zootopia
  10. The Cast of 20th Century  Women

Honorable Mentions: The Monster (Liam Neeson) – A Monster Calls, Flash (Raymond S. Persi) – Zootopia, Jesse (Elle Fanning) – The Neon Demon, HeiHei (Alan Tudyk) – Moana, Mauia (Dwayne Johnson) – Moana.

Thanks for Reading!

Find Mitch on Twitter @mitchydaily

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