BAFTA Winners Announced
The Hurt Locker sweeps the board!
British cinema's annual gathering of the great and the good (or Goode, if you were on A Single Man's aisle) was the story of two films at The Royal Opera House. Avatar and The Hurt Locker each featured in eight categories, including Best Film and Best Director, while British hopes rested with An Education and its terrific, star-making turn from Carey Mulligan (one half of the terrifyingly-monikered 'Carbeouf' with new squeeze Shia LeBeouf).
It was The Hurt Locker, though, that stole the night, winning Best Film and Best Director, while all but sweeping the technical categories. Colin Firth and Carey Mulligan, meanwhile, took full advantage of being on home turf to win Best Actor and Best Actress, respectively, for A Single Man and An Education.
The first award of the night, Outstanding Debut, went to a very emotional Duncan Jones for Moon. Jones wiped away the tears to say, "It's taken me a long time to find out what I want to do with my life, but I've finally found what I really love." Amen to that, and well-deserved too. The award was won last year by Steve McQueen for Hunger and comes as belated recognition for a lo-fi sci-fi that blew our minds in 2009.
Following on from Jones came a host of technical awards, including Sound (winner: The Hurt Locker), Editing (The Hurt Locker) and Cinematography (yup, you guess it). Avatar picked up its only wins for - no surprises here - Special Visual Effects and Production Design.
No surprises in the Best Supporting Actor category, either. Christoph Waltz, er, waltzed off with that one for Inglourious Basterds' Col. Hans Landa, humbly thanking Quentin Tarantino on his way.
Best Supporting Actress, meanwhile, went to Mo'Nique for her bruising and brutal portrayal of Precious' mum/battle-axe, Mary. Accepting in her absence, director Lee Daniels wryly expressed relief that Mo'Nique hadn't faced too much category competition from The Hurt Locker.
The patriot's category of choice, Best British Film, was collected by Fish Tank, something of a turn-up considering the buzz surrounding An Education.
The Orange Rising Star award, as voted for by Twilight fans members of the public, was picked up by the ever-bashful Kristen Stewart who thanked loyal Twi-hards for their "loyalty and attentiveness". Probably more (a) than (b), though.
The gala evening finished on a note of genuine surprise, when Kathryn Bigelow's The Hurt Locker took Best Film, once again beating off the big blue. Bigelow, Mark Boal and the Lockerites all looked suitably shocked, as the expectation in some quarters had been that Avatar would take the prize.
Now, whether or not this has any bearing on the Oscars is hard to say: we'd still put money on Avatar winning Best Picture there, especially as voting for the Oscars has closed, and won't be directly affected by the BAFTAs, but a race that seemed to be a foregone conclusion has now been blown wide open.
The night's main prizes went to:
The Hurt Locker
OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM Fish Tank
Colin Firth, A Single Man
LEADING ACTRESS Carey Mulligan, An Education
Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Baster
Mo'nique, Precious: Based On The Novel Push By Sapphire
DIRECTOR The Hurt Locker, Kathryn Bigelow
OUTSTANDING DEBUT BY A BRITISH WRITER, DIRECTOR OR PRODUCER
Duncan Jones, Moon (Director)
Click here for the full list of nominees and winners.