Simply the best
edging out Lupita Nyong’o, a Bafta and Oscar nominee for her breakout performance in 12 Years A Slave.
Once regarded by Hollywood as a minor footnote on the awards circuit, the Baftas have shot to greater prominence in the past decade since organisers decided to hand out the prizes before the Oscars instead of after.
The switch upped the awards’ prestige as a predictor of the Academy Awards and turned the ceremony into an A-list red-carpet event for Tinseltown’s biggest celebrities.
Given a break from the relentless rain that has pounded Britain for weeks and drowned some parts of England, fans screamed as Amy Adams, Tom Hanks, Christian Bale, Leonardo DiCaprio and other stars strolled into the Royal Opera House, which Fry joked was named after Oprah Winfrey, who attended Sunday for the first time.
Winfrey was the evening’s first presenter and a nominee for supporting actress.
“Her performance in The Butler was so commanding I nearly gave mine the afternoon off,” Fry said.
Hollywood royalty inside the auditorium was matched by the real kind: Prince William, second in line to the British throne and titular president of the British Academy of Film and Theatre Arts, a post traditionally reserved for a member of the royal family.
William helped present the academy’s highest honour, a Bafta fellowship, to Helen Mirren, who won an Oscar for portraying Queen Elizabeth II.
The prince joked that he ought to call Mirren “Granny.”
Mirren enthralled the audience by reciting a passage from Shakespeare’s The Tempest.
“‘We are such stuff as dreams are made on, and our little life is rounded with a sleep’,” she said after a standing ovation.
“My little life is rounded with this honour.”
The British academy also gave a special award for outstanding contribution to British cinema to director Peter Greenaway, the veteran auteur known for off-kilter and often boundary-pushing films such as The Cook, The Thief, His Wife And Her Lover, which starred Mirren. – Los Angeles Times/ McClatchy-Tribune Information Services
barkhad abdi (seen here with emma Thompson who presented him the best Supporting actor award) said he would keep his trophy in his mother’s house.
Helen Mirren is the recipient of the academy Fellowship award.