What Oscars? Catch the Independent Spirit Awards!

Eddie Izzard hosts, Ben Stiller presents, Gwyneth Paltrow competes and star-studded spontaneity is the tradition

The 82nd annual Academy Awards are only two days away, but first, there's another fun ceremony on the docket in Hollywood. The 25th annual Film Independent Spirit Awards take place tonight in Los Angeles, and nominees include Gwyneth Paltrow, Jeff Bridges, Gabourey Sidibe, Mo'Nique, Helen Mirren, Colin Firth and Woody Harrelson, to name a few.

And then there are the Spirit Award presenters: Colin Farrell, Jodie Foster, Mariah Carey (more champagne, waiter!), Ethan Hawke, The Hurt Locker's Jeremy Renner and Maggie Gyllenhaal are scheduled to appear, among others.

Hosted by British comedian Eddie Izzard (The Riches), the dressed-down, no-holds-barred ceremony includes many nominees who will also vie for Oscars later this weekend. Here are some of the most notable Spirit Award nominees (read the full list on IFC.com): 

--Best feature(500) Days of Summer, Amreeka, The Last Station, Precious, Sin Nombre

--Best first featureCrazy Heart, Easier with Practice, The Messenger, Paranormal Activity, A Single Man

--Best female leadMario Bello (Downloading Nancy), Nisreen Faour (Amreeka), Helen Mirren (The Last Station), Gwyneth Paltrow (Two Lovers), Gabourey Sidibe (Precious)

--Best male leadJeff Bridges (Crazy Heart), Colin Firth (A Single Man), Joseph Gordon-Levitt (500) Days of Summer), Adam Scott (The Vicious Kind), Souleymane Sy Savane (Goodbye Solo)

--Best supporting femaleDina Korzun (Cold Souls), Samantha Morton (The Messenger), Mo'Nique (Precious), Natalie Press (Fifty Dead Men Walking), Mia Wasikowska (That Evening Sun)

--Best supporting maleJemaine Clement (Gentleman Broncos), Woody Harrelson (The Messenger), Christian McKay (Me and Orson Welles), Raymond McKinnon (That Evening Sun), Christopher Plummer (The Last Station)

Ben Stiller, who stars in the upcoming indie Greenburg, is the Honorary Chair of tonight's ceremony. According to Film Independent, the Honorary Chair is "selected for their outstanding achievements in film, as well as their commitment to Film Independent's overall mission to celebrate the wide spectrum of independent filmmaker" and will announce the winner of the best feature award. (Previous Honorary Chairs include Alec Baldwin, Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman and Halle Berry.)

The Independent Spirit Awards airs live -- and uncensored -- tonight on IFC, 11 p.m. ET. Click here to watch the arrivals coverage (8 p.m. ET) live online.

What was your favorite independent film of 2009? Chime in below!

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