Abraham Attah Wins Best Male Lead at Independent Spirit Awards

Uprising Ghanaian teenage actor, Abraham Attah was named Best Male Lead at the 31st Film Independent Spirit Awards sponsored by Heineken in Santa Monica on Saturday.

The 14 year-old Beasts of No Nation actor beat out fellow actors Ben Mendelsohn (Mississippi Grind
), Christopher Abbott (James White), Jason Segel (The End of the Tour
) and Koudous Seihon (Mediterranea) to grab the honour.

Jessica Chastain presented the award to Attah during the ceremony, which was held at the Santa Monica Pier and aired on IFC.

Abraham received a standing ovation from his peers as he hit the podium to accept the best actor prize previously won by Michael Keaton, Matthew McConaughey, Jeff Bridges, Ryan Gosling, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Bill Murray.

Full of smiles, the first-time performer thanked everyone from his fellow winner and co-star Idris Elba to the Netflix film’s director, Cary Fukunaga, to the costume designers when he took the stage.

According to Hollywood Reporter, earlier on that night, Elba brought the young Ghanaian actor up on stage with him to share his best supporting male actor award.

I couldn’t have done it without you,” Elba told Attah.


During the show’s opening monologue, co-hosts Kumail Nanjiani and Kate McKinnon joked about the roundup of this year’s films while mentioning Beast of No Nation, Room and Spotlight.

This year’s nominees cover a wide variety of difficult subjects ranging from child abuse to even worse child abuse,” said Nanjiani.

Attah played child soldier Agu in the African war drama, which was Netflix’s first original narrative film, as well as his first acting role ever. 


Since after his role in Netflix’s Beast of No Nation, Abraham Attah has continued to earn significant recognition in the movie industry across the globe .

We would recall that so far, he has bagged three major awards: Venice International Film Festival Marcello Mastroianni Best Young Actor Award, National Board of Review Award for Best Breakthrough Performance (shared with Jacob Tremblay), and Black Film Critics Circle Black Film Critics Circle Rising Star Award.

9 year-old Jacob Tremblay of Room, was also at the occasion as a presenter. Just a day earlier, Abraham joined him for a holiday at the Universal Studios theme park in Los Angeles.

Earlier this year, Attah was selected to present award at the 2016 Oscars Academy Awards which was also held the following (Sunday) night. He did the presentation at the Oscars with fellow child actor, Jacob Tremblay.