The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) handed out their awards yesterday. They are basically the British version of the Academy and the last major precursor we have before the Oscars.
With the Olympics extending the season an extra few weeks, the Oscar ballots only went out a few days ago. That means we have another half-month of hemming and hawing over intangible “buzz,” with no other big group to give us a real hint at where we’re headed. It’s true that a lot can change in two weeks. Given the extreme closeness of this race, hyped-up news stories based on rumors cooked up by campaign strategists could have an impact in the empty void in between BAFTA and Oscar. But my guess is it really won’t.
Nothing has been settled yet in any of the phases so far. From the festival circuit, to the various critics’ awards, to the guild awards, to now – we still have a tight race that appears to be 12 Years a Slave for picture and Gravity for director. American Hustle seems to have stumbled ever so slightly in recent days, but you’d be crazy not to think it’s still in the mix.
BAFTA has done nothing to clear any of this up. 12 Years won picture, while Gravity took director and (somewhat controversially) Best British Film. The only choices that were out of the norm came in 4 categories where the Brits’ unique tastes came through:
- The very British Philomena took screenplay from 12 Years, out of admiration for Steve Coogan’s outstanding year.
- Editing went, quite deservedly, to Rush. Europeans love Formula One racing, though it seems to hold little interest over here.
- Both Actor categories were missing their frontrunners, as Dallas Buyers Club was soundly ignored in the nominating phase. Fellow Brit Chiwetel Ejiofor is an obvious choice in place of McConaughey. But I most thrilled about seeing Captain Phillips’ Barkhad Abdi recognized without Jared Leto standing in the way.
Scroll down for the complete list of winners. (Check out the nominees here.)
Best Picture – 12 Years a Slave
Best British Film – Gravity
Best Director – Alfonso Cuarón, Gravity
Best Actor – Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
Best Actress – Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Best Supporting Actor – Barkhad Abdi, Captain Phillips
Best Supporting Actress – Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle
Best Adapted Screenplay – Philomena, Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope
Best Original Screenplay – American Hustle, Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell
Best Cinematography – Gravity, Emmanuel Lubezki
Best Documentary – The Act of Killing
Best Animated Feature – Frozen
Best Music – Gravity, Steven Price
Best Editing – Rush
Best Production Design – The Great Gatsby
Best Costume Design – The Great Gatsby
Best Sound – Gravity
Best Hair & Makeup – American Hustle
Best British Short, Live Action – Room 8
Best British Short, Animation – Sleeping with the Fishes
Outstanding British Debut – Kelly & Victor
BAFTA Rising Star – Will Poulter