Sci-fi epic ‘Dune’ and dark western ‘The Power of the Dog’ lead the way as the British Academy Film Awards return on Sunday with a live black-tie ceremony after a pandemic-cut event in 2021 .
Acting nominees Benedict Cumberbatch and Lady Gaga are among the stars expected to hit the red carpet at London’s Royal Albert Hall ahead of a ceremony hosted by Rebel Wilson. Last year’s event was largely held online, with only hosts and presenters appearing in person.
“Dune” by Denis Villeneuve, with Timothée Chalamet and Zendaya, has 11 nominations including those for best film, cinematography and original music. Jane Campion’s “The Power of the Dog,” set in 1920s Montana and starring Cumberbatch as a rancher, has eight, including Best Director and Best Picture.
If Campion wins the achievement trophy, she will be only the third female winner in this category, but the second in two years after Chloe Zhao for “Nomadland” in 2021.
“Belfast”, semi-autobiographical by Kenneth Branagh, the story of a childhood eclipsed by the violent “Troubles” of Northern Ireland, has six nominations, including that of the best film. Daniel Craig’s latest James Bond thriller ‘No Time To Die’, Steven Spielberg’s musical ‘West Side Story’ and Paul Thomas Anderson’s coming-of-age drama ‘Licorice Pizza’ each have five appointments.
Best Picture nominees include ‘Dune’, ‘The Power of the Dog’, ‘Belfast’, ‘Licorice Pizza’ and comedy disaster ‘Don’t Look Up’.
The separate Best British Film category includes “After Love”, “Ali & Ava”, “Belfast”, “Boiling Point”, “Cyrano”, “Everybody’s Talking About Jamie”, “House of Gucci”, “Last Night in Soho “. “, “No time to die” and “Pass”.
Best Actor contenders are Cumberbatch, Adeel Akhtar for ‘Ali & Ava’, Mahershala Ali for ‘Swan Song’, Stephen Graham for ‘Boiling Point’, Leonardo DiCaprio for ‘Don’t Look Up’ and Will Smith for ‘King Richard. ”
The main actresses nominated are Lady Gaga for “House of Gucci”, Alana Haim for “Licorice Pizza”, Emilia Jones for “Coda”, Renate Reinsve for “The Worst Person in The World”, Joanna Scanlan for “After Love” and Tessa Thompson. to pass”. The category is the most unpredictable of the night, with acclaimed performances from Kristen Stewart in Princess Diana’s biopic “Spencer” and Olivia Colman in “The Lost Daughter” being overlooked for the nomination.
Britain’s film academy has expanded its voting membership and shaken up its rules in recent years to try to address a glaring lack of diversity in nominations. In 2020, no woman was named best director for a seventh consecutive year, and all 20 nominees in the lead and supporting performer categories were white.
Awards organizers say they are committed to supporting new talent, and this year all artists in the supporting actor category are nominated for the first time. They include Woody Norman for “C’mon C’mon” – at age 11, the youngest nominee of the year – and Ariana DeBose, who plays Anita in “West Side Story”.
The UK awards, known as the BAFTAs, usually take place a week or two before the Oscars and have become a milestone of awards season. This year’s Oscars take place on March 27.