Paste magazine originally published this article on February 4, 2020.
A ghostly foghorn blares as a mustached Aubrey Plaza and a pipe-smoking Bill Murray tell a tall tale about the Film Independent Spirit Awards. In this pitch-perfect parody of Robert Eggers’ The Lighthouse, the epic story of a cursed 19th-century New England island, Plaza satirizes Ephram Winslow (played by Robert Pattinson in the film), telling Murray (who evokes Willem Dafoe’s Thomas Wake), “I be hosting the Independent Spirit Awards on a faraway beach where the red carpet be covered in sand,” in a period-appropriate fisherman accent. Murray says “aye” as Plaza adds, “and the losers will be swept out to sea.”
Murray’s words at the end of the clip capture the film’s Lovecraftian descent into madness, as Murray garbles, “and the orchestra’s horn section will become to blows … of weird sharks!”
Plaza is set to host the 35th Film Independent Spirit Awards on Feb. 8, which will air on IFC at 5 p.m. EST. Natasha Lyonne and Zazie Beetz announced the nominees, with Best Feature contenders including Clemency, The Farewell, A Hidden Life, Marriage Story and Uncut Gems. For the Best Director category, nominees include Robert Eggers (The Lighthouse), Alma Har’el (Honey Boy), Benny and Josh Safdie (Uncut Gems), Julius Onah (Luce) and Lorene Scafaria (Hustlers).