While you were watching the Grammys the BAFTAs took place

2015-02-09 11:36

London — Slow-cooked coming-of-age tale Boyhood took the best film and director trophies at the British Academy Film Awards on Sunday, while Wes Anderson's candy-coloured comedy The Grand Budapest Hotel won the biggest haul of prizes, with five.

Both are unusual works by distinctive directors, and there were also multiple trophies for the Stephen Hawking biopic The Theory of Everything and the jazz-drumming drama Whiplash at an event that proved small, personal films could emerge as winners.

Awards-season high-flyer Birdman had its wings clipped, taking only a cinematography prize from 10 nominations. And World War II code-breaking drama The Imitation Game went away empty-handed despite nine nominations.

Richard Linklater, who spent 12 years making Boyhood, was named best director, and Patricia Arquette won the supporting-actress trophy as a struggling mother in the film.

Arquette said Linklater had set out to show "how extraordinary an ordinary life is."

Boyhood star Ellar Coltrane, who grew from 6 to 18 onscreen, thanked British voters for rewarding "an exercise of collaboration and vulnerability."

The British awards are considered an indicator of likely success at Hollywood's Academy Awards later this month.

The Theory of Everything was named best British film. Eddie Redmayne, already an awards-season favourite, won the best-actor prize for his performance as physicist Hawking, who probed the cosmos while his body was wracked by motor neuron disease.

Redmayne paid an emotional tribute to Hawking, his ex-wife Jane and their families, "for reminding me of the great strength that comes from the will to live a full and passionate life."

Julianne Moore was named best actress for portraying a woman with Alzheimer's in Still Alice.

Anderson won the original screenplay trophy for The Grand Budapest Hotel, which also took prizes for production design, costumes, hair and makeup and Alexandre Desplat's score.

Damien Chazelle's jazz-drumming drama Whiplash — a taut psychological showdown that was shot in 19 days — took prizes for sound and editing. The supporting-actor trophy went to the film's J.K. Simmons, a stalwart character actor who is finally receiving major awards recognition.

The Lego Movie was named best animated feature, a prize the filmmakers said helped ease the pain of its Oscars snub.

"You are our favourite academy by far," said co-director Phil Lord.

British actor Jack O'Connell, star of 71 and Unbroken, won the Rising Star award, the only trophy decided by public vote. The others are chosen by several thousand members of the British film academy.

The Oscar-nominated Polish film Ida won the award for best film not in the English language.

The awards ceremony is British cinema's glitziest event, and an important stop for Hollywood awards hopefuls. Steve Carell, Michael Keaton, Amy Adams and Reese Witherspoon were among the American actors who walked the red carpet before the ceremony at London's Royal Opera House.

British stars included Kristin Scott Thomas and Rosamund Pike , soccer great David Beckham — and Hawking, who received a huge ovation when he appeared onstage to present the award for visual effects.

Hawking was introduced by The Theory of Everything actress Felicity Jones as the only person on earth more intelligent than ceremony host Stephen Fry.

"Yes, and better looking," Hawking joked.

British talent has been especially well represented in Hollywood this year, led by multiple awards nominations for The Theory of Everything and The Imitation Game.

BAFTA organizers said that acclaimed civil rights drama Selma, which stars British actor David Oyelowo as Martin Luther King, Jr., was overlooked because it arrived in Britain too late for the 6,500 academy members to see it. The film's tally of just two Oscar nominations helped spark a debate about Hollywood's lack of diversity.

Imitation Game star Benedict Cumberbatch said the omission of Selma was the "one bitter note" of the event.
"I wish David Oyelowo was here with us as well," he said. "I'll be honouring him in my head tonight."

The British academy also overlooked Mike Leigh's artist biopic Mr. Turner in the major categories, despite critical praise and a Cannes best-actor prize for star Timothy Spall.

But Leigh was not forgotten. He received a lifetime honour, the British Academy Fellowship, for a body of films blending social realism and sly humour.

The awards are presented by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, which hosts a separate ceremony for TV programs.

Here are all the winners:

Film — Boyhood
British Film — The Theory of Everything
Director — Richard Linklater, Boyhood
Actor — Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything
Actress — Julianne Moore, Still Alice
Supporting Actor — J.K. Simmons, Whiplash
Supporting Actress — Patricia Arquette, Boyhood
Rising Star — Jack O'Connell
British Debut — Writer Stephen Beresford and producer David Livingstone, Pride
Original Screenplay — Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel
Adapted Screenplay — Anthony McCarten, The Theory of Everything
Film Not in the English Language — Ida
Music — Alexandre Desplat, The Grand Budapest Hotel
Cinematography — Emmanuel Lubezki, Birdman
Editing — Whiplash
Production Design — The Grand Budapest Hotel
Costume Design — The Grand Budapest Hotel
Sound — Whiplash
Visual Effects — Interstellar
Makeup and Hair — The Grand Budapest Hotel
Animated Feature — The Lego Movie
Short Film — Boogaloo and Graham
Short Animation — The Bigger Picture
Documentary — Citizenfour
Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema — BBC Films
Academy Fellowship — Mike Leigh

(Photos: AP)

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