Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
The Future Of Film
The 100 Greatest Video Games
Robin Williams: The Big Interview
Kevin Feige:
My Movie Life

The Marvel supremo's pick of the flicks
Want To Be An Empire Journalist?
Find out how here
Movie News

LATEST HEADLINES
TODAY
Tak3n Trailer Smashes Online
It ends here
Dominic Cooper Boards Marvel's Agent Carter
The young Howard Stark is officially back
Netflix To Simultaneously Release Crouching Tiger 2
Streaming service makes big deal
David Fincher Will Direct The First Season Of HBO's Utopia
He'll be busy next year...
New Look At Oscar Isaac In A Most Violent Year
J. C. Chandor's Once Upon A Time In America
Teaser Trailer For Inherent Vice
Paul Thomas Anderson does Thomas Pynchon
Billy Elliot Beats The Equalizer
Live screening of stage musical scores at the UK box office
More Movie News

RELATED NEWS
28 September 2014
Guy Pearce Joins Genius
Dominic West also set for Michael Grandage's film
More Movie News

RELATED FUTURE FILMS
American Pastoral
31 December 2015
Ant-Man
17 July 2015
Unbroken
26 December 2014
The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies
12 December 2014
Paddington
28 November 2014
More Future Films

RELATED REVIEWS
Before I Go to Sleep (2014)
Empire Star Rating
Supermensch: The Legend Of Shep Gordon (2014)
Empire Star Rating
Jersey Boys (2014)
Empire Star Rating
Grace Of Monaco (2014)
Empire Star Rating
Venus In Fur (2014)
Empire Star Rating
More new cinemas releases
DVD & Blu-ray releases

The BAFTAs: The Show Reviewed
Fry succeeds, but the BBC's broadcast fails

23 February 2003  |  Written by   

submit to reddit

Long before a single award was presented at this year’s BAFTAs, the ceremony could already claim to have been a huge success, simply by attracting an enormous number of A-list stars, the like of which has never been seen for a film do in London. The cunning re-working of the ceremony, rescheduling it to go out before the Oscars has been a huge success for the British Academy, bathing the whole British film industry in reflected glory.

Now all that's required is for the BBC to give the show the scheduling it deserves and put it out live. There’s a certain insanity first in delaying the broadcast of the BAFTAs to create edited highlights and then in cutting into Britain’s most prestigious film awards ceremony with the evening news, giving viewers the opportunity to check the internet for the winners of the biggest awards before that part of the show had been broadcast.

That aside, the show began well as the master of ceremonies for the evening – Stephen Fry – welcomed the A-list audience and the viewers at home, with trademark battiness, to the BAFTAs in London’s West End. ‘If London is Britain’s heart then the West End is the surgeon’s aorta.’

Explaining the academy’s decision to give him a third outing as compere as ‘a tribute to both my availability and my plain old fashioned cheapness,’ Fry launched into an opening speech of unusual eloquence and surrealism – after all, how many times do you hear the word ‘cartilaginous’ at the Oscars? – urging stars to keep their speeches short lest the huge BAFTA masks at the back fall down and crush them into a bloody pulp.

The first award of the evening was the Alexander Korda Award for Best British Film which went to The Warrior. Director Asif thanked, ‘everyone here for being so famous and for letting us in.’ Best Supporting Actor went to Christopher Walken – oddly there was no thank-you video shown, the trophy being taken away by its presenter, Angelina Jolie.

Almodovar makes plea for peace
Next up was Best Special Effects which went to The Two Towers followed by the Anthony Asquith Award for Achievements in Film Music which was won by a visibly-moved Philip Glass for his score for The Hours. Then we had the award for Best Film Not in the English Language; ‘a shoo-in,’ quipped Fry, ‘you’d think for Scooby-Doo.’ In the event, it was won by Pedro Almodovar for Talk To Her, who took the opportunity to make an eloquent plea for peace. ‘Cinema and war are two very different things…,’ said Almodovar before going on to tell the audience that; ‘we have to stop this army of darkness.’

Michael Caine presented the Michael Balcon award for Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema to two Assistant Directors, Michael Stephenson and David Tomblin.

Then to present the award for Best Cinematography, we had Gael Garcia Bernal, who prefaced his reading of the nominees by saying that millions had voted against war in Iraq, ‘but we still haven’t had a response,’ but votes were made for the 10 films ‘and we have the results right here’. In the event, the award went to the late Conrad Hall for Road To Perdition.

Best Supporting Actress was presented by Martin Scorsese to Catherine Zeta-Jones. ‘I’m very hormonal!,’ she shrieked, before slipping from her usual Mid-Atlantic twang to deepest Swansea, thanking everyone she’d ever met or worked with. Best Original Screenplay was won by Pedro Almodovar for Talk To Her and The Orange Film of the Year was announced as The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.

Spanking Spike Jonze
Meryl Streep picked up the award for Best Adapted Screenplay on behalf of writer Charlie Kaufman – reading out a speech he’d faxed over and which had been given to her in a sealed envelope. As you’d expect from Kaufman it was supremely quirky, giving Streep directions on how she should read the speech. Thrown by it, in a great Freudian moment Streep read out that she wished to ‘spank’ rather than ‘thank’ Spike Jonze – a mistake that was clearly relished by the audience.

Best British Director went to Asif Kapadia for The Warrior. This was followed by Best Director which went to Roman Polanksi for Best Director and was collected by the film’s star Adrian Brody whose rambling thank-you speech told the audience that; ‘the important thing to acknowledge is that Roman has overcome a tremendous amount of loss in his life… telling this story allowed him the opportunity to tell something that was extremely personal without jeopardising his own memories.’

Introduced with great unctuousness by Stephen Fry as a ‘classic’, Sir Ian McKellen presented the award for Best Actress to Nicole Kidman. Kissing Meryl Streep before she mounted the stairs to the stage, Kidman told the audience that ‘this was really a big deal for me,’ thanking the British film industry for being so good to her in recent years and crediting her success to her co-stars Streep and Julianne Moore. ‘I divide it into three,’ she said, clutching her award, ‘so we share it together.’

A luminous looking Jennifer Connolly then presented the BAFTA for Best Actor to Daniel Day Lewis. ‘I’d like to salute my fellow nominees… both men and women,' said Day Lewis. 'I feel a great sense of privilege at having been included among you.’

The penultimate award for Best Film was presented by Tim Robbins to (wait for it)… The Pianist. Certainly not what the bookies, or perhaps the audience, were expecting – but good enough for us. And the show wrapped with the award for the Fellowship of the British Academy which was presented by Kristin Scott-Thomas and Michael Douglas to Saul Zaentz, producer of such cinematic greats as One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, The English Patient and Amadeus, who castigated the American government for its pro-war stance and received a standing ovation for his troubles.

In his brief closing speech, Fry joined in Meryl Streep, ‘in wanting to spank you all,’ before scurrying off with all the other stars to numerous celebrity bashes being held all over London.

And so to our verdict. Well, masochistic as it might seem, watching the edited highlights on the BBC can never be the same as watching the full shebang and hearing the awards announced live. We want the full version next year and are launching our campaign for it right now. If you agree, email the BBC and say so by contacting www.bbc.co.uk/complaints.

Full list of winners
Best film
The Pianist

Best British film
The Warrior


Best director
Roman Polanski - The Pianist

Best actor in a leading role
Daniel Day-Lewis- Gangs of New York

Best actress in a leading role
Nicole Kidman - The Hours

Best actor in a supporting role
Christopher Walken - Catch Me If You Can

Best actress in a supporting role
Catherine Zeta Jones - Chicago

Make-up and hair
Frida

Special visual effects
The Lord of The Rings: The Two Towers

Best sound
Chicago

Editing
City of God

Costume design
The Lord of The Rings: The Two Towers

Production design
Road to Perdition

Cinematography
Road To Perdition

Best music
The Hours

Best film not in the English language
Hable con ella (Talk To Her)

Original screenplay
Hable con ella (Talk To Her)

Adapted screenplay
Adaptation

Carl Foreman award for special achievement in first feature film
Asif Kapadia - The Warrior (writer and director)

Best short film
My Wrongs 8245-8249 And 117

Short animation
Fish Never Sleep

Film of the year (public vote)
The Lord of The Rings: The Two Towers

Have Your Say
To comment on this, and all articles, register for free or login now.

Storm Brews Ahead Of Oscars
It's them or us says Malick to organisers...
Impractical Magic
Kidman ready to be Bewitched?

SPECIAL FEATURE
The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time EMPIRE READERS' POLL: THE 301 GREATEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME
You turned out in your hundreds and thousands, and here are the results... Browse the full list


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
The Bond Girls Who Made It Big
The actresses who overcame the curse of 007 to forge successful careers

The Future Of Film: A Woman Will Direct Star Wars
No longer a men’s club, Hollywood is going to start opening its doors...

The Empire Podcast #130: Interviews With Rosamund Pike, Lee Child And Antoine Fuqua
The Gone Girl star, Jack Reacher author and The Equalizer director pop in for a chat

The Future Of Film: Movie Posters Will Talk To You (And Buy Your Tickets)
Movie posters will be bigger, better... and talk to you?

The 50 Greatest Voice Performances In Movies
Who has the most talented tonsils in town?

25 Movie Songs Bigger Than The Movie
The film tunes that transcend their origins...

Denzel Washington: A Viewer’s Guide
The highs and lows of The Equalizer star’s career to date

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get 6 Issues Of Empire For Only £15!

Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save maney on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 6 issues of Empire for just £15!
Get the world's greatest movie magazine delivered straight to your door! Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)