Thursday, January 21, 2010

From Across the Pond.

Nominations for the British Academy Awards have just be announced and color me surprised but the big twist is that all the usual suspects ended up showing up here as well.
Oh and also the fact that once again the stunning "Bright Star" was practically snubbed in every category.

BEST FILM
AVATAR James Cameron, Jon Landau
AN EDUCATION Amanda Posey, Finola Dwyer
THE HURT LOCKER Nominees TBC
PRECIOUS: BASED ON THE NOVEL PUSH BY SAPPHIRE Lee Daniels, Sarah Siegel-Magness, Gary Magness
UP IN THE AIR Ivan Reitman, Jason Reitman, Daniel Dubiecki

As usual it's an array of Oscar favorites with one purely British film thrown in for kicks. That "An Education" might also get a Best Picture nomination at the Oscars is a nice coincidence, the real surprise is that they ignored the more European "Inglourious Basterds" for mostly American fare like "Up in the Air".

OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM
AN EDUCATION Amanda Posey, Finola Dwyer, Lone Scherfig, Nick Hornby
FISH TANK Kees Kasander, Nick Laws, Andrea Arnold
IN THE LOOP Kevin Loader, Adam Tandy, Armando Iannucci, Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Tony Roche
MOON Stuart Fenegan, Trudie Styler, Duncan Jones, Nathan Parker
NOWHERE BOY Kevin Loader, Douglas Rae, Robert Bernstein, Sam Taylor-Wood, Matt Greenhalgh

An impressive lineup. Why it didn't translate to their Best Picture is odd.

OUTSTANDING DEBUT BY A BRITISH WRITER, DIRECTOR OR PRODUCER
LUCY BAILEY, ANDREW THOMPSON, ELIZABETH MORGAN HEMLOCK, DAVID PEARSON Directors, Producers –
Mugabe and the White African
ERAN CREEVY Writer/Director – Shifty
STUART HAZELDINE Writer/Director – Exam
DUNCAN JONES Director – Moon
SAM TAYLOR-WOOD Director – Nowhere Boy

DIRECTOR
AVATAR James Cameron
DISTRICT 9 Neill Blomkamp
AN EDUCATION Lone Scherfig
THE HURT LOCKER Kathryn Bigelow
INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS Quentin Tarantino

Quentin and Neill Blomkamp's inclusions perhaps prove that the movies they substituted weren't completely beloved by the BAFTA and it makes sense because they are the movies that might hit closer to American sensibilities.
It's a thrill to watch two women nominated in this category though. If this lineup transferred to AMPAS I wouldn't complain.

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
THE HANGOVER Jon Lucas, Scott Moore
THE HURT LOCKER Mark Boal
INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS Quentin Tarantino
A SERIOUS MAN Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
UP Bob Peterson, Pete Docter

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
DISTRICT 9 Neill Blomkamp, Terri Tatchell
AN EDUCATION Nick Hornby
IN THE LOOP Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Armando Iannucci, Tony Roche
PRECIOUS: BASED ON THE NOVEL PUSH BY SAPPHIRE Geoffrey Fletcher
UP IN THE AIR Jason Reitman, Sheldon Turner

This reminded me how ridiculous it is that they also snubbed "In the Loop" so much. It should have this award in the bag if only because it was perhaps the most quotable movie of 2009.
Still Hornby winning for his classy work in "An Education" wouldn't hurt at all. I expect them to reward "Up in the Air" and please AMPAS though.

FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
BROKEN EMBRACES Agustín Almodóvar, Pedro Almodóvar
COCO BEFORE CHANEL Carole Scotta, Caroline Benjo, Philippe Carcassonne, Anne Fontaine
LET THE RIGHT ONE IN Carl Molinder, John Nordling, Tomas Alfredson
A PROPHET Pascale Caucheteux, Marco Chergui, Alix Raynaud, Jacques Audiard
THE WHITE RIBBON Stefan Arndt, Veit Heiduschka, Margaret Menegoz, Michael Haneke

BAFTA has a weird love for silly forgettable French movies and this year "Coco Before Chanel" is that case. The rest are splendid nominees though.

ANIMATED FILM
CORALINE Henry Selick
FANTASTIC MR FOX Wes Anderson
UP Pete Docter

LEADING ACTOR
JEFF BRIDGES Crazy Heart
GEORGE CLOONEY Up in the Air
COLIN FIRTH A Single Man
JEREMY RENNER The Hurt Locker
ANDY SERKIS Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll

No Tom Hardy or Sam Rockwell for inherently British productions is ridiculous especially considering how last year they went all the way to find a way to include the dull Dev Patel in this category. It's good to see they snubbed Clint Eastwood who this year was eligible for "Gran Torino" in the UK.

LEADING ACTRESS
CAREY MULLIGAN An Education
SAOIRSE RONAN The Lovely Bones
GABOUREY SIDIBE Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire
MERYL STREEP Julie & Julia
AUDREY TAUTOU Coco Before Chanel

It's awesome to see Saoirse Ronan being recognized for her terrific turn in this underrated film, but what the hell is Audrey Tautou doing there? That they included her over people like Emily Blunt and Helen Mirren is surprising.
That she got in over Abbie Cornish and Katie Jarvis is just insulting.

SUPPORTING ACTOR
ALEC BALDWIN It’s Complicated
CHRISTIAN McKAY Me and Orson Welles
ALFRED MOLINA An Education
STANLEY TUCCI The Lovely Bones
CHRISTOPH WALTZ Inglourious Basterds

Alec Baldwin over Peter Capaldi from "In the Loop" and Michael Fassbender from "Fish Tank" is too preposterous to even comment.

SUPPORTING ACTRESS
ANNE-MARIE DUFF Nowhere Boy
VERA FARMIGA Up in the Air
ANNA KENDRICK Up in the Air
MO’NIQUE Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire
KRISTIN SCOTT THOMAS Nowhere Boy

So it seems the British also fell for the one note performance Anna Kendirck gave and not only that but found her better than the ladies from "Inglourious Basterds" and "An Education".
Again if just last year Frieda Pinto got in for basically looking pretty was it too much to ask them to remember Rosamund Pike who not only looked beautiful but actually explored why her character was arm candy.

MUSIC
AVATAR James Horner
CRAZY HEART T-Bone Burnett, Stephen Bruton
FANTASTIC MR FOX Alexandre Desplat
SEX & DRUGS & ROCK & ROLL Chaz Jankel
UP Michael Giacchino

CINEMATOGRAPHY
AVATAR Mauro Fiore
DISTRICT 9 Trent Opaloch
THE HURT LOCKER Barry Ackroyd
INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS Robert Richardson
THE ROAD Javier Aguirresarobe

No "Bright Star"...tisk tisk tisk.

EDITING
AVATAR Stephen Rivkin, John Refoua, James Cameron
DISTRICT 9 Julian Clarke
THE HURT LOCKER Bob Murawski, Chris Innis
INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS Sally Menke
UP IN THE AIR Dana E. Glauberman

PRODUCTION DESIGN
AVATAR Rick Carter, Robert Stromberg, Kim Sinclair
DISTRICT 9 Philip Ivey, Guy Poltgieter
HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE Stuart Craig, Stephenie McMillan
THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS Nominees TBC
INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS David Wasco, Sandy Reynolds Wasco

COSTUME DESIGN
BRIGHT STAR Janet Patterson
COCO BEFORE CHANEL Catherine Leterrier
AN EDUCATION Odile Dicks-Mireaux
A SINGLE MAN Arianne Phillips
THE YOUNG VICTORIA Sandy Powell

Oh yay "Bright Star" did make it in somewhere! This category is pretty hard to argue with in terms of quality though.

SOUND
AVATAR Christopher Boyes, Gary Summers, Andy Nelson, Tony Johnson, Addison Teague
DISTRICT 9 Nominees TBC
THE HURT LOCKER Ray Beckett, Paul N. J. Ottosson, Craig Stauffer
STAR TREK Peter J. Devlin, Andy Nelson, Anna Behlmer, Mark Stoeckinger, Ben Burtt
UP Tom Myers, Michael Silvers, Michael Semanick

SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS
AVATAR Joe Letteri, Stephen Rosenbaum, Richard Baneham, Andrew R. Jones
DISTRICT 9 Dan Kaufman, Peter Muyzers, Robert Habros, Matt Aitken
HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE John Richardson, Tim Burke, Tim Alexander, Nicolas Aithadi
THE HURT LOCKER Richard Stutsman
STAR TREK Roger Guyett, Russell Earl, Paul Kavanagh, Burt Dalton

MAKE UP & HAIR
COCO BEFORE CHANEL Thi Thanh Tu Nguyen, Jane Milon
AN EDUCATION Lizzie Yianni Georgiou
THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS Sarah Monzani
NINE Peter ‘Swords’ King
THE YOUNG VICTORIA Jenny Shircore

Ouch for "Nine". How it went from being a surefire frontrunner to a laughing stock is one of the season's most fascinating stories.

SHORT ANIMATION
THE GRUFFALO Michael Rose, Martin Pope, Jakob Schuh, Max Lang
THE HAPPY DUCKLING Gili Dolev
MOTHER OF MANY Sally Arthur, Emma Lazenby

SHORT FILM
14 Asitha Ameresekere
I DO AIR James Bolton, Martina Amati
JADE Samm Haillay, Daniel Elliott
MIXTAPE Luti Fagbenle, Luke Snellin
OFF SEASON Jacob Jaffke, Jonathan van Tulleken

THE ORANGE RISING STAR AWARD (voted for by the public)
JESSE EISENBERG
NICHOLAS HOULT
CAREY MULLIGAN
TAHAR RAHIM
KRISTEN STEWART

No Katie Jarvis in this category is bollocks! Or whatever rude expression the British would use to encompass disdain.

2 comments:

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

The situation with Nine is ridiculous. Sure, I'm yet to see it but the fact that the poor critical reception means that it suddenly doesn't have good technical aspects is a bit silly, bu predictable with these stody award ceremonies.

re The nominees: way too much Up In the Air, and Precious but at least no Invictus.

Michael Parsons said...

They love 'Precious' over here. Also because it came out later some BAFTA voters I know (not actors sadly) are going gaga for Mo'Nique and Gabby. Would love to see a Gabby win here.