Yorgos Lanthimos’s period comedy The Favourite emerged as the favourite at the 72nd British Academy Film Awards ceremony on Sunday by scoring seven wins from 12 nominations. The awards, held at the Royal Albert Hall in London, were handed by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts to the best films and documentaries released in British theatres in 2018. Alfanso Cuaron’s autobiographical Roma got four awards from seven nominations.
The Favourite follows the tumultuous triangular relationship between Queen Anne (Olivia Colman), her confidante and secret lover Sarah Churchill (Rachel Weisz), and the ambitious Abigail Masham (Emma Stone). The British production’s BAFTA wins include awards for Best Actress for Colman, Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Weisz, Best Original Screenplay (Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara), Outstanding British Film, Best Production Design (Fiona Crombie and Alice Felton), Best Costume Design (Sandy Powell), and Best Makeup and Hair (Nadia Stacey).
Roma, which has tied with The Favourite by bagging 10 nominations at the 91st Academy Awards, has also been a favourite this year. Made in the Spanish and Mixtec languages, Roma follows the life of a maid, played by Yalitza Aparicio, in the early 1970s.
The film’s winning streak began with a Golden Lion at the 2018 Venice International Film Festival. After winning big at the 2019 Golden Globe Awards, the film got Cuaron two BAFTAs – Best Director and Best Cinematography – on Sunday. The film also won both Best Film and Best Film Not in an English Language awards.
The Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody got Rami Malek yet another Best Actor award. For his performance as the Queen vocalist, Malik has won both a Golden Globe and a Screen Actors Guild award. He has also been nominated in the Best Actor category at the Academy Awards.
Directed by Bryan Singer, the film also won the BAFTA award for Best Sound. Singer was nominated as one of the producers in the Best British Film category, but his name was dropped from the list in the light of sexual harassment allegations.
Academy Award winner Mahershala Ali won the Best Supporting Actor award for Peter Farelly’s slice-of-life comedy Green Book. Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman, based on retired American policeman Ron Stallworth’s autobiographical Black Klansman, won the Best Adapted Screenplay award (Lee, David Rabinowitz, Charlie Wachtel, and Kevin Willmott).
Hank Corwin won the Best Editing award for Adam McKay’s Vice, which chronicles the life of Dick Cheney, American politician and ex-Vice President of the United States of America. Cheney is played by Christian Bale. Bradley Cooper-directed A Star Is Born got Cooper, Lady Gaga, and Lukas Nelson the Best Original Music award.
The superhero blockbuster Black Panther won the award for Best Special Visual Effects (Geoffrey Baumann, Jesse James Chisholm, Craig Hammack, and Dan Sudick). Another superhero film, Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse, won the Best Animated Film award.
The thriller Beast got its writer-director Michael Pearce the Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer award. Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin’s Free Solo, about rock climber Alex Honnold, won the Best Documentary award.
Three-time Academy Award winner Thelma Schoonmaker, the veteran film editor who has worked on 23 films directed by Martin Scorsese since 1967, was honoured with the BAFTA fellowship for a career spanning five decades. In her speech, Schoonmaker spoke fondly of Scorsese, who introduced her to her future husband, acclaimed British director Michael Powell.