The winners were somewhat predictable, but it was all about the presenters and winners' speeches.
As the British equivalent to the Oscars, last night’s BAFTAs were obviously a glamorous affair. In between bouts of Stephen Fry’s self deprecating humor (“[Oprah’s] performance in The Butler was so moving, I almost gave mine the afternoon off.”) and jabs at all of his colleagues (Fry introduced the flawless Emma Thompson as “In the film world, a goddess. In real life, a ghastly piece of sickly shrieking awful.”) there were also some awards given out.
Stephen Fry always makes for an entertaining awards show.
The big winners of the night were somewhat surprising. Predictions pegged Gravity and 12 Years A Slave – the two award show favorites so far – for the majority of BAFTAs as well. Instead, the Steve McQueen directed 12 Years only took two awards out of 8 nods total. Granted, they were the big ones - best film and leading actor (Chiwetel Ejiofor) – but that was it.
Ejiofor got recognized for his outstanding performance in 12 Years A Slave.
Gravity made a real dent however. Not only did the film win six of its 11 nominations– including outstanding British film, director (Alfonso Cuarón) and cinematographer (Emanuel Lubezki), and a Bafta for its brilliant special visual effects team, but Cuaron’s time on stage was one of the best parts of the show. Particularly good for people, who enjoy immigrant humor. Cuaron joked about how he’s been living in London for over a decade: “I guess that I make a very good case for curbing immigration.” The crowd cheered.
Alfonso Cuaron delivered what had to be the joke of the night.
There were shocks in the supporting actor and actresses categories – and 12 Years a Slave took a hit both times. Jennifer Lawrence, hugely popular in the film industry here and in the States, took the supporting actress BAFTA for her role as an outspoken, erratic wife in American Hustle, thus beating out hot favourite Lupita Nyong’o. As for the male category, it went to Barkhad Abdi, who played one of the Somali pirates in Captain Phillips. Abdi wasn’t a favorite to win, with most bookies predicting an award for Michael Fassbender, but lo and behold – Abdi was finally recognized.
Barkhad Abdi got recognized for his work in Captain Philips.