Sean Ellis’ pic, which is shot in the Tagalog language, is the U.K.’s submission for the foreign-language film award at the Oscars, and won the audience award for world cinema at Sundance. Fox International Prods. has acquired remake rights for the pic, which follows a poor farmer as he moves to the megacity of Manila and gets a job driving armored transports.
The BIFA awards ceremony, which was held at London’s Old Billingsgate Sunday, saw other prizes spread evenly among the other contenders.
Steven Knight took the scripter’s honor for “Locke,” which he also directed. The one-hander, which was described in its Variety review as “an ingeniously executed study in cinematic minimalism,” toplines Tom Hardy as man driving at night, making a series of calls on his cell as he goes, as he tries to defuse a personal crisis and a professional dilemma. Knight’s previous scripting credits include “Dirty Pretty Things” and “Eastern Promises.”
Lede acting kudos went to Lindsay Duncan for Roger Michell’s “Le Week-end,” and James McAvoy for Jon S. Baird’s “Filth,” while supporting thesp winners were Imogen Poots in Michael Winterbottom’s “The Look of Love,” and Ben Mendelsohn in David Mackenzie’s “Starred Up,” which had led the nominations race with eight noms.
Paul Wright took the Douglas Hickox Award, which recognizes the best debut helmer, for “For Those in Peril,” a poetic reverie about a troubled youth who is the sole survivor of a fishing boat accident. Variety’s reviewer said: “Wright’s strongest achievement here is an evocative depiction of place, where young teens flee from adult supervision and danger lies in wait.”
The most promising newcomer award went to actress Chloe Pirrie for “Shell.” Pirrie has also been selected for BAFTA’s Breakthrough Brits program, which celebrates up-and-coming local talent.
As previously announced, the Richard Harris Award for outstanding contribution by an actor to British film went to Julie Walters, and the Variety Award was picked up by helmer Paul Greengrass for bringing international attention to U.K. cinema.
The ceremony was streamed live exclusively online at http://www.film3sixty.com/moetbifa.
BRITISH INDEPENDENT FILM
Sean Ellis — Metro Manila
THE DOUGLAS HICKOX AWARD (DEBUT DIRECTOR)
Paul Wright — For Those in Peril
Steven Knight — Locke
Lindsay Duncan — Le Week-end
James McAvoy — Filth
Imogen Poots — The Look of Love
Ben Mendelsohn — Starred Up
MOST PROMISING NEWCOMER
Chloe Pirrie — Shell
ACHIEVEMENT IN PRODUCTION
Amy Hubbard — Casting — The Selfish Giant
Pussy Riot — A Punk Prayer
INTERNATIONAL INDEPENDENT FILM
Blue Is the Warmest Color
THE RAINDANCE AWARD
THE RICHARD HARRIS AWARD (for outstanding contribution by an actor to British Film)
THE VARIETY AWARD
THE SPECIAL JURY PRIZE
Sixteen Films & Friends (AKA Team Loach)