2017 BAFTA Awards

by Corey O’Neill

This past Sunday, the 70th annual British Academy Film and Television Art Awards (BAFTA) were held at The Royal Albert Hall in London, England. Stars were shining on the red carpet, and once the show began, “La La Land” had a huge night.

Once again, “La La Land” scored big, taking home the most awards with 5, including Best Film. The film also won for Best Director (Damien Chazelle), Best Actress in a Leading Role (Emma Stone), Best Cinematography and Best Original Music. Having the most award nominations for a film with 11, “La La Land” looks to be a big favorite to win Best Picture at this year’s upcoming Oscars. The film also smashed a Golden Globes record, winning every award it was nominated for with 7. All signs point to Oscar wins!

During Stone’s acceptance speech, she touched upon today’s world affairs. “This country – and the US, and the world – seems to be going through a bit of a time, just a bit… In a time that’s so divisive, I think it’s so special we were able to come together tonight thanks to BAFTA, to celebrate the positive gift of creativity and how it can transcend borders, and how it can help people to feel a little less alone.”

Kenneth Lonergan’s film “Manchester by the Sea,” also took home multiple awards, winning for Best Original Screenplay and Best Actor in a Leading Role (Casey Affleck). Affleck won this award for his performance as Lee Chandler at the Golden Globes as well.

With Meryl Streep in attendance, Affleck felt he needed to speak to her regarding her Golden Globes speech after the ceremony. “I told her how much her speech at the Golden Globes meant to all of us and how grateful I was that she did it, and kicked in the door a little bit, and said it’s OK to talk about these things and said it doesn’t matter if we are actors, we have been given a microphone and we can speak out.”

Another film which took home multiple awards was Garth Davis’s film “Lion.” “Lion,” which is about an adopted man searching for his family in India, was awarded Best Adapted Screenplay (based on the book “A Long Way Home” by Saroo Brierley) and Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Dev Patel). The 26-year-old Patel described the win as ‘so overwhelming.’

Other notable awards include Viola Davis for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for “Fences,” Best Editing for “Hacksaw Ridge” (John Gilbert), and Tom Holland, who plays Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, was awarded the Rising Star Award.

For those who are unfamiliar with the Awards show, the BAFTAs are essentially the British Oscars. Like the Golden Globes and the SAG Awards, the BAFTAs are a strong indicator for who and what will take home Academy Awards, award season’s most coveted prize. The Academy Awards take place on Feb. 26.

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