Oscar 2008: Washington D.C. Critics–Slumdog Millionaire

Washington DC – The Washington, DC Area Film Critics Association (WAFCA) today announced its selection of the surprise indie hit "Slumdog Millionaire" as Best Film of 2008. In total, the Fox Searchlight film won four awards including Best Director for Danny Boyle, Best Breakthrough Performance for Dev Patel and Best Adapted Screenplay for Simon Beaufoy.

Comeback master Mickey Rourke took home the belt for Best Actor for his gritty, raw portrayal of a washed up professional wrestler who can't give up the spotlight in Fox Searchlight's "The Wrestler," while Meryl Streep was awarded her first WAFCA award by winning Best Actress for her turn as a strict Catholic school nun seeking the truth in Miramax's "Doubt."

"In the face of massive marketing for big studio films, it is the ultimate underdogs who have emerged as critic's darlings and fan favorites," said Tim Gordon, president of WAFCA.

In other categories, the late Heath Ledger won Best Supporting Actor for his stunning, captivating portrayal of the Joker in "The Dark Knight" from Warner Brothers Pictures, while Disney/Pixar's lovable, Chaplin-esque "Wall·E" was named Best Animated Feature, and Paramount's "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" was honored for Best Art Direction.

The cast of "Doubt" also walked away with Best Acting Ensemble, while Rosemarie DeWitt won Best Supporting Actress for "Rachel Getting Married" from Sony Pictures Classics.

The Washington, DC Area Film Critics Association is comprised of 46 DC-VA-MD based film critics from television, radio, print and the Internet. Voting was conducted from December 5 – 7, 2008.

Best Film: "Slumdog Millionaire"/Fox Searchlight

Best Director: Danny Boyle ("Slumdog Millionaire")

Best Actor: Mickey Rourke ("The Wrestler")

Best Actress: Meryl Streep ("Doubt")

Best Ensemble: "Doubt"/Miramax

Best Supporting Actor: Heath Ledger ("The Dark Knight")

Best Supporting Actress: Rosemarie DeWitt ("Rachel Getting Married")

Best Breakthrough Performance: Dev Patel ("Slumdog Millionaire")

Best Adapted Screenplay: Simon Beaufoy ("Slumdog Millionaire")

Best Original Screenplay: Jenny Lumet ("Rachel Getting Married")

Best Animated Feature: "Wall·E" /Disney & Pixar

Best Foreign Language Film: "Let the Right One In"/Magnolia Pictures and Magnet Releasing

Best Documentary: "Man on Wire"/Magnolia

Best Art Direction: "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button"/Paramount