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Artios Awards Honor Top Casting Directors in New York, L.A.

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Artios Awards Honor Top Casting Directors in New York, L.A.

The casting directors of Broadway's "The Book of Mormon" and "The Normal Heart" were among the honorees at the Casting Society of America's 27th annual Artios Awards, which were presented Sept. 26 at District 36 in New York City and the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles.

"In a business that can often forget or ignore who actually gets things done and how, you guys have this night to always keep focused on the value of what you do," host Nicole Sullivan told the nominees at the ceremony in Los Angeles. "Good casting is integral to having success in TV, film, and theater, and we are here to honor that."

The term "Artios" is from the ancient Greek word meaning "perfectly fitted," and the awards are presented for outstanding casting in theater, film, and television, based on originality, creativity, and the contribution of casting to the overall quality of the project.

"Casting directors are the unsung heroes of our business," actor Michael Urie, who hosted the event in New York, told Back Stage before the ceremony. "They spend so much time and energy and work introducing artists to each other, and then they send them off into the world. They don't get a lot of recognition, so I think it's very cool that there's a night for them, and I'm honored to be here. And I hope to get a job out of it."

To begin the show, Urie told the attendees, "You are our champions, and I am honored to be kissing your ass."

Award presenters in New York included Daniel Radcliffe, Bobby Cannavale, Alan Cumming, Mamie Gummer, Ben Walker, Lucy Liu, Rachel Griffiths, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Jonathan Groff, Justin Bartha, Patina Miller, Hunter Parrish, Lily Rabe, Michael Stuhlbarg, and Brooke Shields. Mike Nichols presented the New York Apple Award to Whoopi Goldberg.

"I know how important casting directors are, because I was given birth to by one," Radcliffe said before presenting an award.

Presenters in Los Angeles included Hailee Steinfeld, Octavia Spencer, and Darren Criss. The Los Angeles ceremony honored "Law & Order" creator Dick Wolf with the Career Achievement Award, and Shaun Cassidy presented veteran casting director Meg Liberman (senior vice president of casting, CBS Television Studios) with the Hoyt Bowers Award. Upon accepting her award, Liberman said, "I think the most satisfying part of being a casting director is discovering new talent and giving them their first big break."

Casting director Bernard Telsey (Telsey + Company), winner of two Artios Awards on Monday night, was proud of his fellow nominees and excited by the continued growth of CSA's membership. He said that 15 percent of the membership in New York is new this year.

"Looking at the nominees, I noticed about five or seven new New York casting directors who got nominated," Telsey said. "And now, in the last two years, we have regional theater nominations and we have Off-Broadway nominations, and those are cast by so many more casting directors. It gets more people involved and more people recognized, because the work that's happening out there is just as good as the Broadway stuff."

Independent casting director and CSA New York board member Megan Larche said that in addition to attracting new members, the Casting Society of America is striving to become a more unified community offering social outreach and mentorship. "We're trying to do more intercommunity activities," Larche said, "so we get to know each other not just as people on the phone or seeing each other at a showcase, but get to know each other as human beings too."

Each year, the Artios Awards offers casting directors and actors the rare opportunity to interact outside the audition room. All the performers in attendance expressed their appreciation for the work that casting directors have done to keep them working, and in some cases to change their lives with a single role.

"I've gotten to know enough of these casting directors to know that whether you get the job or not is not personal, but your relationship with them is," Urie said before the New York awards were handed out. "And they do care. I have to remind myself of that before every audition."

Additional reporting by Jessica Gardner

The full list of winners and nominees is below (the winners are in bold).

BIG BUDGET FEATURE, DRAMA
"The Fighter," Sheila Jaffe, Angela Peri (location casting)
"Inception," John Papsidera
"The Social Network," Laray Mayfield
"The Town," Lora Kennedy, Carolyn Pickman (location casting)
"True Grit," Ellen Chenoweth, Rachel Tenner, JoEdna Boldin (location casting)

BIG BUDGET FEATURE, COMEDY
"How Do You Know," Francine Maisler, Lynn Kressel (location casting)
"Morning Glory," Ellen Lewis*
"Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides," Francine Maisler*
"Red," Deborah Aquila, Tricia Wood, Craig Fincannon (location casting), Lisa Mae Fincannon (location casting), Robin D. Cook (location casting)
"Scott Pilgrim vs. The World," Jennifer Euston, Robin D. Cook*

FEATURE, STUDIO OR INDEPENDENT, DRAMA
"Animal Kingdom," Kirsty McGregor
"Barney's Version," Pam Dixon, Nina Gold, Andrea Kenyon (location casting)*
"Black Swan," Mary Vernieu
"The Conspirator," Avy Kaufman, Jackie Burch (location casting)
"The King's Speech," Nina Gold

FEATURE, STUDIO OR INDEPENDENT, COMEDY
"Easy A," Lisa Miller Katz
"I Love You Phillip Morris," Bernard Telsey
"It's Kind of a Funny Story," Cindy Tolan
"The Kids Are All Right," Laura Rosenthal, Liz Dean (Los Angeles casting)
"Soul Surfer," Joey Paul Jensen*

LOW BUDGET FEATURE, DRAMA/COMEDY
"Blue Valentine," Cindy Tolan, Richard Hicks (L.A. casting consultant), David Rubin (L.A. casting consultant)
"Kaboom," Johanna Ray, Jenny Jue
"Lovely, Still," Eyde Belasco*
"Night Catches Us," Lois Drabkin*
"Winter's Bone," Kerry Barden, Paul Schnee*

ANIMATION FEATURE
"Alpha and Omega," Bernie Van De Yacht
"Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole," Kristy Carlson*
"Rio," Christian Kaplan
"Tangled," Jamie Sparer Roberts
"Toy Story 3," Kevin Reher, Natalie Lyon

DAYTIME DRAMA SERIES
"All My Children," Judy Blye Wilson
"Days of Our Lives," Marnie Saitta
"General Hospital," Mark Teschner


TELEVISION PILOT, DRAMA
"Boardwalk Empire," Ellen Lewis
"Game of Thrones," Nina Gold*
"The Killing," Junie Lowry Johnson, Libby Goldstein, Stuart Aikins (location casting), Sean Cossey (location casting)
"Shameless," John Frank Levey*
"The Walking Dead," Sharon Bialy, Sherry Thomas, Lisa Mae Fincannon (location casting), Craig Fincannon (location casting)

TELEVISION PILOT, COMEDY
"The Big C," Julie Tucker, Ross Meyerson
"Hot in Cleveland," Collin Daniel, Brett Greenstein
"Mike & Molly," Nikki Valko, Ken Miller
"Mr. Sunshine," Francine Maisler
"Raising Hope," Dava Waite Peaslee

TELEVISION SERIES, DRAMA
"Dexter," Shawn Dawson
"The Good Wife," Mark Saks
"Mad Men," Carrie Audino, Laura Schiff
"Game of Thrones," Nina Gold*
"In Treatment," Junie Lowry-Johnson, Libby Goldstein, Julie Tucker (New York casting), Ross Meyerson (New York casting)

TELEVISION SERIES, COMEDY
"The Big C," Julie Tucker, Ross Meyerson
"Community," Dava Waite Peaslee
"Glee," Robert J. Ulrich, Eric Dawson, Carol Kritzer
"Modern Family," Jeff Greenberg
"Nurse Jackie," Julie Tucker, Ross Meyerson

TELEVISION MOVIE/MINISERIES
"Cinema Verite," Randi Hiller
"God in America," Paul Fouquet, Elissa Myers
"Mildred Pierce," Laura Rosenthal
"Marry Me," Gillian O'Neill, Mark Fincannon (location casting), Sharon Fincannon (location casting)*
"Too Big To Fail," Alexa L. Fogel, Christine Kromer

CHILDREN'S SERIES
"Hannah Montana," Howard Meltzer, Carol Goldwasser
"iCarly," Krisha Bullock
"The Suite Life on Deck," Dana Gergely, Brandi Brice
"True Jackson, VP," Harriet Greenspan
"Wizards of Waverly Place," Ruth Lambert, Robert McGee

TELEVISION ANIMATION
"The Backyardigans," Leslie Zaslower*
"Bubble Guppies," Leslie Zaslower*
"Go Diego Go," Leslie Zaslower*
"The Penguins of Madagascar," Sarah Noonan, Meredith Layne
"Spongebob Squarepants," Sarah Noonan*

SHORT FILM
"California Romanza," Randi Hiller, Tamara-Lee Notcutt
"The Candy Shop," Mark Fincannon
"Efrain," Billy DaMota*
"Neighbors," Robin Lippin
"Ollie Klublershturf vs. The Nazis," Alyssa Weisberg
"Sodales," Randi Hiller, Tamara-Lee Notcutt
"The Thief," Randi Hiller, Tamara-Lee Notcutt
"Yearbook," James Calleri

NEW YORK BROADWAY THEATER, DRAMA
"Jerusalem," Jim Carnahan*
"Lombardi," Laura Stanczyk
"The Normal Heart," Bernard Telsey, Will Cantler
"That Championship Season," Cindy Tolan
"War Horse,"  Daniel Swee

NEW YORK BROADWAY THEATER, COMEDY
"A Free Man of Color," Daniel Swee
"Arcadia," Jim Carnahan
"Good People," David Caparelliotis
"La Bete," Jim Carnahan*
"Mrs. Warren's Profession," Jim Carnahan, Carrie Gardner

NEW YORK BROADWAY THEATER, MUSICAL
"Anything Goes," Jim Carnahan*
"The Book of Mormon," Carrie Gardner
"Catch Me If You Can," Bernard Telsey, Justin Huff, Craig Burns
"How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying," Tara Rubin, Merri Sugarman, Eric Woodall, Laura Schutzel
"Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown," Bernard Telsey

NEW YORK THEATER, COMEDY/MUSICAL

"The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," Rachel Hoffman
"By The Way, Meet Vera Stark," Mele Nagler
"The Grand Manner," Daniel Swee
"Hairspray," Craig Burns
"School for Lies," James Calleri
"Tigers Be Still," Carrie Gardner
"Trust," Mele Nagler

NEW YORK THEATER, DRAMA
"Angels in America," Will Cantler
"The Hallway Trilogy," James Calleri
"Other Desert Cities," Daniel Swee
"The Other Place," Bernard Telsey, Will Cantler
"Three Sisters," James Calleri

REGIONAL THEATER EAST
"A Delicate Balance," Tara Rubin, Laura Schutzel, Eric Woodall, Merri Sugarman
"Antony and Cleopatra" Will Cantler
"Every Tongue Confess," Alaine Alldaffer*
"Follies," Laura Stanczyk
"Ruined,"  Tara Rubin, Eric Woodall, Merri Sugarman, Laura Schutzel*

REGIONAL THEATER WEST (tie)
"August: Osage County," Samantha Barrie
"Circle Mirror Transformation," Joanne DeNaut
"Leap of Faith," Bernard Telsey, Justin Huff
"Little Miss Sunshine," Bernard Telsey
"Tales of the City," David Caparelliotis

LOS ANGELES THEATER
"The Cradle Will Rock," Scott David, Erica Silverman
"Gigi," Amy Lieberman
"Kiss Me, Kate," Amy Lieberman
"Much Ado About Nothing," Michael Donovan
"The Temperamentals," Scott David, Erica Silverman

SPECIAL HONOREES

CAREER ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
Dick Wolf

HOYT BOWERS AWARD
Meg Liberman

THE NEW YORK APPLE AWARD
Whoopi Goldberg

*Shared credit with non-CSA casting director(s)

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