I watched most of the BAFTAs last night and, to nobody’s surprise, The King’s Speech was the big winner. All three principal actors won their respective categories (Colin Firth as Best Actor, Helena Bonham-Carter as Best Supporting Actress, and Geoffrey Rush as Best Supporting Actor). The film also won Best Original Screenplay, Best British Film and Best Film.
It’s a big favourite to win many of the same awards at the Oscars, although perhaps its chances are a little lower than at the BAFTAs which tend to reward Brish films more than the Oscars do. That said, the film has been an unqualified success. It costs £15 million to make and has so far grossed over £110 million and that will only increase on the back of these wins and those which are sure to come at the Oscars. I ended up feeling a bit sorry for anyone nominated in the same categories as they must have known they had little chance of victory. The big winners other than The King’s Speech were Natalie Portman (Best Actress for Black Swan), David Fincher (Best Director for The Social Network and Aaron Sorkin (Best Adapted Screenplay for The Social Network).
The Outstanding Contribution to British Cinema award deservedly went to the Harry Potter films. It is impressive that films on that scale have been made in the UK and they have contributed greatly to infrastructure for film in this country. The award was collected by producer David Heyman, all the series’ directors with the exception of Chris Columbus, stars Emma Watson and Rupert Grint (Daniel Radcliffe is appearing on Broadway at the moment), and the woman who made it all possible, J. K. Rowling.
Sir Christopher Lee was made a Fellow of the Academy. He’s 88 and has been making films for more than 50 years, so I don’t know why he wasn’t one already.