Kathryn Bigelow and Steven Spielberg win New York Film Critics awards

Jessica Chastain Jessica Chastain plays a CIA officer in Zero Dark Thirty

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Director Kathryn Bigelow and Steven Spielberg's latest film, Lincoln, were the big winners at The New York Film Critics Circle awards on Monday.

Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty, based on the 10-year-long hunt for Osama Bin Laden, was named best film of 2012 with Bigelow named best director.

While Lincoln won three awards including best actor for Daniel Day-Lewis for role as the American president.

The awards were announced on Twitter.

Oscar fever

The New York Film Critics Circle awards are the first major movie awards in the season leading up to Hollywood's Academy Awards, with Zero Dark Thirty now positioned as one of the front runners.

It stars Jessica Chastain as a young CIA officer who has pursued Bin Laden for years through a long-forgotten courier.

Kathryn Bigelow Kathryn Bigelow won an Oscar for best director for The Hurt Locker

Spielberg's film, about Abraham Lincoln's battle to outlaw slavery, also won best supporting actress for Sally Field and best screenplay.

Rachel Weisz won best actress for her portrayal of Hester Collyer in the romantic drama The Deep Blue Sea, set in post-war Britain.

Matthew McConaughey won best supporting actor for his roles in the raunchy comedy Magic Mike and Richard Linklater's Bernie.

Best foreign language film went to Austrian director Michael Haneke's Amour, and Tim Burton's Frankenweenie won best animated feature.

Ben Affleck's well-received Iran hostage thriller, Argo, failed to feature in the award-winners list, while the first big movie adaptation of the popular stage musical, Les Miserables also missed out.

The New York based film critics organisation comprises members from newspapers, magazines and some online publications.

The awards will be handed out at a ceremony on 7 January 2013.

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