“The Favourite” and “Roma” were the big winners at Sunday night’s 72nd British Academy Film Awards in a night that held few surprises until the final award. Entering the night with 12 nominations “The Favourite” took home seven awards, including best actress for Olivia Colman and outstanding British film, but it was beaten to best film by Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma.” The film’s best film win marks a triumph for Netflix.
Cuaron won a record four personal BAFTAs for a single film from a record six personal nominations, including best director and cinematography. “Roma” also won the BAFTA for film not in the English language. Cuaron’s four wins bring his total BAFTA wins to seven having previously won best director and best British film for “Gravity” and film not in the English language for producing Guillermo Del Toro’s 2006 movie “Pan’s Labyrinth.”
“Thank you Alfonso, you did not make this easy, but it was worth it,” said producer Gabriela Rodriguez collecting the award for film not in the English language alongside Cuaron.
The ceremony, which took place at the Royal Albert Hall, was hosted for the second consecutive year by Joanna Lumley who mocked the Oscars with her opening joke. “Thank goodness BAFTA actually has a host,” said Lumley. “But I suspect that may have something do to with the fact I’m not on Twitter.”
Congratulating Bradley Cooper on his record-equalling five-nominations in different disciplines for “A Star is Born” Lumley said it “probably means he needs to learn how to delegate.” Cuaron was also nominated for five disciplines plus received a sixth nomination for film not in the English language. “One more than you Bradley, come on, pull your finger out next time,” joked Lumley.
Cooper scored one win as “A Star is Born” took home best original music. “I got to fulfil a dream I never thought would happen,” said Cooper of the chance to compose music, “and I got to do it with some of the best musicians in the world. The music was the heartbeat of the film.”
The first award of the night went to “The Favourite” as it picked up outstanding British film. “This film took 20 years to make, I contributed to the last 10,” said director Yorgos Lanthimos. The film then quickly scored its second win in the production design category.
Olivia Colman won best actress for her role as Queen Anne in the film. Colman drew some of the biggest laughs and applause of the night from the audience for her speech. She started by thanking “All the producers, obvs. We’re having an amazing night aren’t we? We’re going to get so pissed later.”
The actress then went on to thank her co-stars Weisz and Stone, calling them “the coolest honor guard anyone could have.” Colman said they were all leads and it was “weird” only one of them could be nominated for lead. “This is for all three of us,” said Colman. “It’s got my name on it but we can scratch in some other names.”
Weisz won best supporting actress for “The Favourite” beating out co-star Stone, who was also nominated. Weisz said: “I had the most extraordinary luck in that I played opposite two of the most glorious women: Olivia Colman and Emma Stone.” It is Weisz’s first BAFTA having been nominated once before for “The Constant Gardener,” for which she won an Oscar. Her win meant “Vice” actress Amy Adams went home empty-handed for a 7th time.
First-time nominee Rami Malek won the best actor award. The actor thanked Freddie Mercury, who he called “the greatest outsider of them of all” for being “unwavering, unflinching and uncompromising in every way.” “Bohemian Rhapsody” also won for best sound.
Mahershala Ali won best supporting actor for Peter Farrelly’s “Green Book.” “The work itself has always been the reward for me so to get this sort of thing is always a bit surreal,” said Ali. It is Ali’s first BAFTA having been nominated in the same category two years ago for “Moonlight,” for which he won an Oscar.
Picking up the original screenplay award for “The Favourite,” writer Deborah Davis, who wrote the first draft of the screenplay 20 years ago, thanked BAFTA for “celebrating our female-dominated movie about women in power.”
Costume designer Sandy Powell picked up her third BAFTA from 15 nominations for “The Favourite,” beating her own work on “Mary Poppins Returns,” which was also nominated. Mark Coulier was less lucky in the make-up and hair category having been nominated twice for both “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “Stan & Ollie,” but losing out to Nadia Stacey, also for “The Favourite.”
British-Guyanese actress Letitia Wright won the EE Rising Star Award, the only award voted for by the public. “I want to thank everybody who gave me a chance,” said Wright. Saying she had previously considered giving up acting but that her faith had helped her through, she encouraged “anybody that is going through a tough time” to know that “God made you and loves you. Let your light shine.”
Last year’s rising star award went to Wright’s “Black Panther” co-star Daniel Kaluuya. “Black Panther” picked up this year’s BAFTA for special visual effects.
Spike Lee won his first BAFTA with a win for “BlacKkKlansman” in the adapted screenplay category. Lee thanked the film’s real-life subject Ron Stallworth for infiltrating the Ku Klux Klan. “Brooklyn’s in the house,” cried out the acclaimed director from the stage.
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” took home the BAFTA for best animated film. “Animation is not a genre, it is a medium, and that medium is film,” said writer-producer Phil Lord, who previously won in the same category for “The Lego Movie.”
Free-climbing documentary “Free Solo” won the award for best documentary. “It has been an incredible year for non-fiction films and we’re just proud to be a part of it,” said co-producer and co-director Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi. The film is already U.K. documentary specialist Dogwoof’s biggest hit in the market having grossed £1.7 million ($2.1 million) and will enter the all-time top ten highest grossing documentaries in the U.K. this week.
Hank Corwin took home his first BAFTA for his editing on Adam McKay’s “Vice.” Corwin had previously been nominated for McKay’s “The Big Short.”
The night’s biggest snub was to “First Man,” which entered the night with seven nominations, equal to “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Roma” and “A Star is Born,” but went home empty-handed. Pawel Pawlikowski’s “Cold War” was unable to convert any of its four nominations into wins; while “Can You Ever Forgive Me?,” “Mary Queen of Scots,” “Mary Poppins Returns,” and “Stan & Ollie” also missed out on any awards despite three nominations each.
As previously announced, BAFTA- and Oscar-winning editor Thelma Schoonmaker was honored with a BAFTA Fellowship, the body’s highest accolade, for her outstanding and exceptional contribution to the industry. Schoonmaker had previous won BAFTA awards for her editing on Martin Scorsese’s films “Raging Bull” and “Goodfellas.” Scorsese was awarded the Fellowship in 2012. Schoonmaker’s late husband, British filmmaker Michael Powell, received the Fellowship in 1981.
Also previously announced, the special BAFTA award for Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema was presented to producers Elizabeth Karlsen and Stephen Woolley of Number 9 Films (“Carol,” “The Crying Game”). Presenting the award actor Bill Nighy said the pair were “among the most successful and influential filmmakers in the world.”
Before coming on Lumley was seen in a video introduction featuring the host trying out outfits for the show, appearing in a number of costumes referencing nominated films including “The Favourite, “Stan & Ollie,” “Mary Poppins Returns,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” and “First Man.” The latter segued into a performance by acrobatic group Cirque de Soleil’s Totem in an interpretation of the moon landing which received a standing ovation from the celebrity audience.
FULL WINNERS LIST:
“Roma,” Alfonso Cuarón, Gabriela Rodríguez
Alfonso Cuaron, “Roma”
Rami Malek, “Bohemian Rhapsody”
Olivia Colman, “The Favourite”
Mahershala Ali, “Green Book”
Rachel Weisz, “The Favourite”
“The Favourite,” Deborah Davis, Tony McNamara
“BlacKkKlansman,” Spike Lee, David Rabinowitz, Charlie Wachtel, Kevin Willmott
“A Star is Born,” Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga, Lukas Nelson
FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
“Roma,” Alfonso Cuarón, Gabriela Rodríguez
“Free Solo,” Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi, Jimmy Chin, Shannon Dill, Evan Hayes
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,”Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman, Phil Lord
OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM
“The Favourite,” Yorgos Lanthimos, Ceci Dempsey, Ed Guiney, Lee Magiday, Deborah Davis, Tony McNamara
“Roma,” Alfonso Cuarón
“Vice,” Hank Corwin
“The Favourite,” Fiona Crombie, Alice Felton
“The Favourite,” Sandy Powell
MAKE UP & HAIR
“The Favourite,” Nadia Stacey
“Bohemian Rhapsody,” John Casali, Tim Cavagin, Nina Hartstone, Paul Massey, John Warhurst
SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS
“Black Panther,” Geoffrey Baumann, Jesse James Chisholm, Craig Hammack, Dan Sudick
OUTSTANDING DEBUT BY A BRITISH WRITER, DIRECTOR OR PRODUCER
“Beast,” Michael Pearce (Writer/Director), Lauren Dark (Producer)
BRITISH SHORT ANIMATION
“Roughhouse,” Jonathan Hodgson, Richard Van Den Boom
BRITISH SHORT FILM
“73 Cows,” Alex Lockwood
EE RISING STAR AWARD (VOTED FOR BY THE PUBLIC)
OUTSTANDING BRITISH CONTRIBUTION TO CINEMA (PREVIOUSLY ANNOUNCED)
Elizabeth Karlsen and Stephen Woolley, Number 9 Films
BAFTA FELLOWSHIP (PREVIOUSLY ANNOUNCED)