|LETTERS FROM LONDON
|REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL
18 February 2014
|Luvvies Loving Themselves
Wills worked the red carpet, got down with Tinie Tempah and introduced his LA-
based-‘granny’ Helen Mirren the winner of the BAFTA Fellowship Award...
Gravity won loads to advance the (now) unfunded British film industry...Brad ‘n
Angelina shared outfits...Uma (Thurman) introduced her new face (curiously
inspired by Lisa Kudrow)...Cate (Blanchett) talked to the dead...Helen (Mirren)
coerced the audience to wave to their favourite teachers and Oprah said ‘Hi’
and that her name is not remotely like the word opera even when
mispronounced, although she may have thought the London Royal Opera
House was indeed named for her and then they all went mad for their ‘selfies’ –
So it was at the BAFTAs.
No surprises from Stephen Fry doing QI and Emma Thompson doing her ‘I’m
drunk on myself’ routine and Turner Prize winner, BAFTA winner for best film
Steve McQueen reminded us that all millions are still slaves.
Cate Blanchett didn’t mention the unmentionable (Woody) as she diverted
attention by giving a heart-felt rather maudlin monologue regarding the recently
deceased Philip Seymour Hoffman. Luvvies looked moved.
Gravity, the $100m Hollywood blockbuster that no one knew was British made
by an Italian who considers himself part of the British film industry and has lived
in London for 13 years, won for the obvious, including original music. No, no,
no. That is the very thing that ruined the film for me. The end of the film was an
explosion of Hollywood saccharine manipulation. Horrible.
Barkhad who? Competitor for Best Supporting Actor, Bradley Cooper was
captured asking: “Who’s that ?” Clearly Barkhad Abdi was not his limo driver.
Not that he would have noticed.
The 28-year-old Somalian refugee, who moved to Minneapolis at the age of 14,
plays a Somali pirate opposite Tom Hanks in the movie Captain Phillips. The
limo driver, chosen among 1000 in an open audition, has been nominated for
an Academy Award as well. Oh dear. Did Bradley assume that he was the
winner? Not quite. Michael Fassbender was odds-on with the bookies to stand
at the podium. Bradley Cooper who?
No worries for the losers. With studio campaigns to promote their nominees at
£10m spent per actor – why worry. We have been reminded in the media lately
that the Oscars have always been ‘fixed’. Surely no surprise when money rules.
March 2 – can’t wait. Wait. I can.
BAFTAs 2014 – full list of winners
Best film: 12 Years a Slave
Outstanding British film: Gravity
Documentary: The Act of Killing
Animated film: Frozen
Director: Alfonso Cuarón, Gravity
Leading actor: Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
Leading actress: Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Supporting actor: Barkhad Abdi, Captain Phillips
Supporting actress: Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle
The EE Rising Star Award: Will Poulter
Outstanding debut by a British writer, director or producer: Kieran Evans, Kelly
Film not in the English language: The Great Beauty
Original screenplay: American Hustle
Adapted screenplay: Philomena
Original music: Gravity
Production design: The Great Gatsby
Costume design: The Great Gatsby
Make up and hair: American Hustle
Special visual effects: Gravity
British short animation: Sleeping with the Fishes
British short film: Room 8