BAFTA Awards: Cate Blanchett, Alfonso Cuaron Continue Winning Streak; '12 Years A Slave' Wins Best Film
The BAFTA awards were given out Sunday, Feb. 16, with Cate Blanchett continuing her winning streak, earning the Best Actress BAFTA for her role in Blue Jasmine and Gravity director Alfonso Cuaron scooping up the Best Director prize.
Blanchett dedicated her award to Philip Seymour Hoffman, her co-star from 1999’s The Talented Mr. Ripley, causing fellow nominee, and Hoffman co-star from The Master and Doubt, Amy Adams to tear up in the audience.
“Phil, your monumental talent, your generosity and your unflinching quest for the truth both in art and in life will be missed by not only me but by so many people not only in this room and in the industry but the audiences who loved you so dearly. You raised the bar continually so very, very high. Phil, buddy, this is for you, you bastard. Hope you’re proud,” Blanchett said.
Both Blanchett and Cuaron have been sweeping the awards this year, both having just won Golden Globes – for Best Actress in a Drama and Best Director, respectively. Approaching the Academy Awards, Cuaron seems like the favorite to win Best Director, though 12 Years A Slave director Steve McQueen could take the win. After all, 12 Years A Slave also continued its Best Picture winning streak at the BAFTAs, beating out fellow Oscar-nominees Gravity, American Hustle, Philomena and Captain Phillips.
Despite losing Best Picture, Gravity came out the biggest winner of the night with six BAFTAs. In addition to Best Director, the film earned awards for Original Score, Special Effects, Cinematography and Outstanding British Film.
Unsurprisingly, 2013’s biggest breakout star Barkhad Abdi won the award for Best Supporting Actor. Abdi’s acting debut in Captain Phillips has garnered him many award nominations this season, including a Critics Choice Award, Screen Actors Guild Award and a Golden Globe.
Emma Thompson presented Abdi with the award, smiling and greeting him with a big hug while co-star Tom Hanks whistled loudly from the audience.
Barkhad Abdi! BAFTA winner! He IS the captain now ! Somali champion !!! Hanx https://t.co/bS9DE9Ut8y
— Tom Hanks (@tomhanks) February 16, 2014
Abdi was up against fellow Oscar nominees Bradley Cooper (American Hustle) and Michael Fassbender (12 Years A Slave) and actors Matt Damon (Behind the Candelabra) and Daniel Brühl (Rush). Abdi’s chances are looking up just in time for the Oscars, but it is worth noting that frontrunner Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club) was not nominated for a BAFTA.
The BAFTAs did provide award-season junkies with one surprise win in Chiwetel Ejiofor’s triumph in the Leading Actor category. Ejiofor, who is also nominated for an Oscar for his role in 12 Years A Slave, came out victorious over fellow nominees Bruce Dern (Nebraska), Christian Bale (American Hustle), Leonardo DiCaprio (The Wolf of Wall Street) and Hanks (Captain Philips), the only one among them not nominated for an Oscar. Fans of Ejiofor might not want to get their hopes up for the Oscars, however, as Oscar-favorite and award-season darling Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club) was not nominated for a BAFTA.
Another slightly surprising win went to Jennifer Lawrence who took home a BAFTA for Best Supporting Actress for her role in American Hustle, one of only three categories won by the film out of ten nominations. Though Lawrence won a Golden Globe for her role, fellow nominee Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years A Slave) has not only been receiving praise for her startling red-carpet fashion, but also for her feature film debut performance. Nyong’o could very well end up with the Oscar.
Viewers will have to wait and see how the BAFTAs will affect or foreshadow the Oscar winners.
The 86th Oscars, hosted for a second time by Ellen DeGeneres, will air Sunday, March 2, 2014 live on ABC at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT.
– Olivia Truffaut-Wong