The London broadcast of the BAFTA Awards on Sunday does not cue what will happen on Oscar night. Suddenly, everyone says, as they did after the Golden Globes, Mickey Rourke will win. The folks voting for the BAFTAs are from the UK film industry, they aren't the same as the 5800 Academy voters. Of course the ceremony does take place smack in the middle of Oscar voting. (Still, many Academy members have already filled out their ballots, due February 17.) But they aren't widely viewed. More people see reports of the winners than the actual show. So rather than being predictive, the BAFTAs may have some slight influence on momentum. Winners look like winners, and so on.
"Will there be a Slumdog backlash?" asked my pal Dan as Slumdog took home seven wins. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie sat patiently, as did producers Frank Marshall and Kathleen Kennedy and director David Fincher, as The Curious Case of Benjamin Button picked up technical awards only (three)--as it likely will on Oscar night.
Slumdog will also be a big winner on February 22. But maybe not as big. My hunch is that more films will win more awards through the categories, including Benjamin Button and Dark Knight and Wall-E. The actor race is still tight between bad boys Sean Penn and Rourke (who will have to watch his potty mouth on live TV); Cruz has won more than Viola Davis has, at this point, and Winslet and Ledger seem good to go. Milk still plays into the soft spot of the politically-correct Academy; it's very American, it's about our history. If Milk doesn't win picture, Penn could get actor, and Dustin Lance Black may beat Wall-E for screenplay.
And the winners are:
OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM
"Man On Wire" - Simon Chinn / James Marsh
Mickey Rourke - "The Wrestler"
Kate Winslet - "The Reader"
Heath Ledger - "The Dark Knight"
Pen√©lope Cruz - "Vicky Cristina Barcelona"
"Slumdog Millionaire" - Danny Boyle
"In Bruges" - Martin Mcdonagh
"Slumdog Millionaire" - Simon Beaufoy
FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
"I've Loved You So Long" - Yves Marmion / Philippe Claudel
THE CARL FOREMAN AWARD FOR SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT BY A BRITISH DIRECTOR, WRITER OR PRODUCER FOR THEIR FIRST FEATURE FILM
Steve Mcqueen, director/writer - "Hunger"
"Wall-E" - Andrew Stanton
"Slumdog Millionaire" - A. R. Rahman
"Slumdog Millionaire" - Anthony Dod Mantle
"Slumdog Millionaire" - Chris Dickens
"The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" - Donald Graham Burt / Victor J. Zolfo
"The Duchess" - Michael O'connor
MAKE UP & HAIR
"The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" - Jean Black / Colleen Callaghan
"Slumdog Millionaire" - Glenn Freemantle / Resul Pookutty / Richard Pryke / Tom Sayers / Ian Tapp
SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS
"The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" - Eric Barba / Craig Barron / Nathan Mcguinness / Edson Williams
"Wallace And Gromit: A Matter of Loaf And Death" - Steve Pegram / Nick Park / Bob Baker
"September" - Stewart Le Mar√©chal / Esther May Campbell
OUTSTANDING BRITISH CONTRIBUTION TO CINEMA
Pinewood Studios / Shepperton Studios