Brits put on the ritz

BAFTA ceremony fights weather

LONDON — Movie stars don’t impress Mother Nature, as Feb. 24’s British Academy Film Awards ceremony at the Odeon Leicester Square and post-kudos dinner at Grosvenor House vividly (and wetly) demonstrated.

But wind and rain couldn’t keep an array of stars from Hollywood, the U.K. (including newly named BAFTA topper Richard Attenborough), the Continent and Oz from treading the soggy and strangely sudsy red carpet.

The night wouldn’t have been complete without a Russell Crowe row afterward; this one was over the BBC’s editing of his acceptance speech for the show’s broadcast. Crowe confronted kudocast producer Malcolm Gerrie and yelled obscenities at the after-party.

While his security men stood guard, Crowe reportedly said, “I don’t give a fuck who you are. Who on earth had the fucking audacity to take out the best actor’s poem? You fucking piece of shit, I’ll make sure you never work in Hollywood.”

It also wouldn’t have been nearly as memorable without the talents of show emcee Stephen Fry, who was alternately witty, catty, hilarious and thoughtful. Does Fry’s edgy repartee play outside London to the hundreds of millions of viewers around the world?

It does if you savor lines like: “I just noticed this floor is so reflective you could see up a girl’s skirt. It’s a shame it’s lost on me. However, it won’t be if Ewan McGregor steps out here wearing a kilt.”

For the record: The carpet reportedly was tossed in the trash the day after the event and all stars were promised a friendlier walkway next year.

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