Movie awards season has officially kicked off, with the New York Film Critics Circle naming the winners of their best-of-the-year accolades. Silent experimental French film The Artist, directed by Michel Hazanavicus, took the top prize:

Best Film: "The Artist"

Best Director: Michel Hazanavicus, "The Artist"

Best Actor: Brad Pitt, "Moneyball" and "The Tree of Life"

Best Actress: Meryl Streep, "The Iron Lady"

Best Supporting Actor: Albert Brooks, "Drive"

Best Supporting Actress: Jessica Chastain, "The Tree of Life," "The Help" and "Take Shelter"

Best Screenplay: Steven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin, "Moneyball"

Best Cinematography: Emmanuel Lubezki, "The Tree of Life"

Best Foreign Language Film: "A Separation"

Best Nonfiction Film: "Cave of Forgotten Dreams"

Best First Feature: "Margin Call"

Special Award (posthumous): Raoul Ruiz

Read the full story at Reuters.