Benedict Cumberbatch, Andrew Scott and Keira Knightley nominated for British Independent Film Awards

Timothy Spall, Jack O'Connell, Imelda Staunton, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Sean Harris and Sally Hawkins also earn nods ahead of the 7th December ceremony

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It’s a fantastic year for British actors and filmmakers, with The Imitation Game, The Theory of Everything and Mr Turner all generating plenty of early buzz ahead of the 2015 awards season. 

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But the British Independent Film Awards have picked up on even more strong performances from homegrown talent in their list of nominations, published today ahead of the 7th December ceremony. 

’71 tops the shortlist with nine nominations, including best director and debut director for Yann Demange, best supporting actor for Southcliffe star Sean Harris and best actor for Jack O’Connell (Skins).

He’ll be going up against Asa Butterfield (X+Y), Brendan Gleeson (Calvary), Timothy Spall (Mr Turner) and Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game) in the race to bag a win for leading man. 

The latter’s co-star, Keira Knightley is nominated in the best actress category, doing battle with Alicia Vikander (Testament of Youth), Cheng Pei Pei (Lilting), Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Belle) and Sameena Jabeen Ahmed (Catch Me Daddy).

The best supporting actor shortlist features a double nomination for Pride – Andrew Scott and Ben Schnetzer – Harris (for ’71), Rafe Spall (X+Y) and Frank’s Michael Fassbender. 

Fassbender’s co-star Maggie Gyllenhaal (who this summer starred in BBC2’s The Honourable Woman) competes in the supporting actress category, along with Imelda Staunton (Pride), Sally Hawkins (X+Y), Dorothy Atkinson (Mr Turner) and Sienna Guillory (The Goob). 

And finally, in with a chance of winning the evening’s prestigious Best British Independent Film are ’71, Calvary, Mr Turner, Pride and The Imitation Game.

Tom Hooper (director of The King’s Speech and Les Misérables) will chair the jury deciding this year’s winners, overseeing the likes of Stanley Tucci, Luke Treadaway and Zawe Ashton. 

The recipients will be announced at a ceremony on Sunday 7th December at the Old Billingsgate in London.

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Watch RadioTimes.com’s interview with Imitation Game stars Keira Knightley, Allen Leech and Matthew Beard below…