Baftas: Hollywood & U.K. Should Switch Academies

The Hurt Locker by Kathryn Bigelow

Some people complain that the Hollywood Academy is enamored of British productions and talent. Well, then perhaps Hollywood and the United Kingdom should switch academies, for the British Academy of Film and Television Arts can't get enough of Hollywood fare. (See full list of BAFTA nominations here.)

James Cameron's Hollywood blockbuster Avatar, Kathryn Bigelow's Iraq war drama The Hurt Locker, and Lone Scherfig's British-made coming-of-age tale An Education lead the race of BAFTA award nominees, with eight nominations apiece. All three are up for best film (An Education is also up for Best British Film), and so are Lee Daniels' urban drama Precious and Jason Reitman's socially conscious comedy-drama Up in the Air. All three films in the running in the animated feature category are US productions: Up, Fantastic Mr. Fox, and Coraline.

Inglourious Basterds, Up in the Air, and the US/New Zealand/South African production District 9 each earned six nods. Precious got four. Eight of the nominated films in the best screenplay categories are either American productions or co-productions, which also dominate the technical and crafts categories. But British film workers shouldn't despair.

Movies made in the UK actually dominate the Outstanding British Film and the Outstanding Debut by a British Director, Writer or Producer categories. British talent even managed to squeeze into the Hollywood-dominated acting categories, although a couple of those were shortlisted for their work in American films, e.g., Colin Firth up for a best actor BAFTA for A Single Man, and Christian McKay in the running for best supporting actor for Me and Orson Welles.

Photo: The Hurt Locker (Jonathan Olley / Summit Entertainment)

Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin in It's Complicated

Among the BAFTA 2010 curiosities are best actress nominee Audrey Tautou for Coco Before Chanel, best actor nominee Andy Serkis for Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll, best supporting actor Alec Baldwin for It's Complicated (above, with Meryl Streep), a best original screenplay nod for The Hangover, only one nomination for Nine (for make-up and hair), the total absence of The Last Station, and no nominations in the acting/direction/cinematography categories for Jane Campion's Bright Star. That's what usually happens when a movie's Award Buzzometer is low – no matter how good the movie; no matter how talented the people involved in them.

Also, Tom Hardy, whose performance in Bronson has earned him raves from critics and a best actor British Independent Film Award, had the misfortune of being a (not internationally famous) British actor starring in a very small film. No nomination. Same for Katie Jarvis in Fish Tank, though at least Jarvis made it into the BAFTA longlists announced a few weeks back. Hardy didn't even get that far.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association is usually berated for being star-struck and all-too-eager to brownnose its way into the executive offices of the big Hollywood studios. Apart from the (very) few British films that sneaked into the top categories, a look at the BAFTA nominations shows that there isn't that much of a difference between them and the Golden Globes.

But wait! Where the heck is Golden Globe winner Sandra Bullock?

Well, in her bed sleeping, I hope. It's 3:56 am in Los Angeles.

But why wasn't she nominated?

It's simple. The Blind Side was ineligible for this year's BAFTAs. Else, she'd likely be in the BAFTA shortlist as well, instead of Audrey Tautou or Saoirse Ronan. Theoretically, Bullock could get nominated next year, but what would be the fun? By then, all the awards buzz about her going blonde will have long fizzled out.

BEST FILM
Avatar – James Cameron, Jon Landau
An Education – Amanda Posey, Finola Dwyer
The Hurt Locker – Nominees TBC
Precious – Lee Daniels, Sarah Siegel-Magness, Gary Magness
Up In the AirIvan Reitman, Jason Reitman, Daniel Dubiecki

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

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

ANIMATED FILM
Coraline – Henry Selick
Fantastic Mr. FoxWes Anderson
Up – Pete Docter

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 BasterdsQuentin Tarantino

LEADING ACTOR
JEFF BRIDGESCrazy Heart
GEORGE CLOONEYUp In the Air
COLIN FIRTH – A Single Man
JEREMY RENNERThe Hurt Locker
ANDY SERKIS – Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll

LEADING ACTRESS
CAREY MULLIGAN – An Education
SAOIRSE RONAN – The Lovely Bones
GABOUREY SIDIBEPrecious
MERYL STREEP – Julie & Julia
AUDREY TAUTOU – Coco Before Chanel

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

SUPPORTING ACTRESS
ANNE-MARIE DUFFNowhere Boy
VERA FARMIGA – Up in the Air
ANNA KENDRICKUp in the Air
MO'NIQUE – Precious
KRISTIN SCOTT THOMASNowhere Boy

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 – Geoffrey Fletcher
Up In the Air – Jason Reitman, Sheldon Turner

CINEMATOGRAPHY
Avatar – Mauro Fiore
District 9 – Trent Opaloch
The Hurt LockerBarry Ackroyd
Inglourious Basterds – Robert Richardson
The RoadJavier Aguirresarobe

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

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

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

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

MAKEUP & 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

ORANGE RISING STAR AWARD
Jesse Eisenberg
Nicholas Hoult
Carey Mulligan
Tahar Rahim
Kristen Stewart

Photo: It's Complicated (Melinda Sue Gordon / Universal)

Baftas: Hollywood & U.K. Should Switch Academies © 2004–2018 Alt Film Guide and/or author(s).
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1 Comment to Baftas: Hollywood & U.K. Should Switch Academies

  1. yasbm

    what no sandra bullock . CraP to the BAFTA BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

    We don't care eligible. o man she did the best performance in the blind side lol putting other names wow just BRAVO BAFTA USELESS.