Unseen BAFTA 2024 Highlights! Top Moments You Definitely Missed On and Off Screen!

 

 

 

It’s official: “Oppenheimer,” the latest work from Christopher Nolan, is the film to watch at this year’s Oscars, as indicated by its success at the 77th British Academy Film Awards. The film snagged the best film and director awards at the event, held for the second consecutive year at London’s Royal Festival Hall. However, the night was not without its surprises.

 

The BAFTAs delivered with a charming host, a strong emphasis on diversity, and a spotlight on British productions. Among them was Jonathan Glazer’s “The Zone of Interest,” which curiously won both the outstanding British film and film not in the English language categories (a first for the BAFTAs). The two-hour televised ceremony—broadcast on the BBC and streamed in the U.S. via BritBox—was a condensed version of the actual event, with much happening off-camera.

 

Here’s a look at what went on behind the scenes at the BAFTAs.

 

Some housekeeping matters

 

Following a pre-show cocktail reception, the staff of the Royal Festival Hall had the challenging task of ushering the attendees into the theater. Many continued to enjoy champagne from paper cups. One of the last to take his seat was Prince William, who attended alone this year as the Princess of Wales is still recuperating from a recent surgery.

 

Before the event officially started, a few ground rules were established. One notable rule, which was later disregarded, was to refrain from applause during the in memoriam segment. Sara Putt, BAFTA chair, gave a short speech off-air, stating the organization’s mission to “champion talent, exceptional storytelling and make the screen industries a more equitable and sustainable place.” Despite referencing the recent WGA and SAG strikes, she commended the film industry for a year of “stellar storytelling.”

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Introducing the real Bark Ruffalo

 

Scottish actor David Tennant, widely known in the U.S. for his compelling portrayal of the Doctor in “Doctor Who,” brought a fresh, youthful energy to the BAFTAs as host. He showed off his comedic chops in an opening skit about dog-sitting for actor Michael Sheen’s dog, Bark Ruffalo. Tennant, who brought the small white dog to the ceremony, later joked that the dog was actually played by actor Andy Serkis, who presented the first award for original screenplay.

 

The real Bark Ruffalo is actually a Maltese named Lilliput, making her possibly the first dog to receive BAFTA accreditation, according to her manager Paula Stewart. She disappeared backstage after the opening skit.

 

“Poor Things” takes the night

 

It soon became clear that Yorgos Lanthimos’ “Poor Things” had won over BAFTA voters, especially in the craft categories. The film won several awards, including special visual effects, costume design, makeup and hair, and production design. However, Lanthimos himself did not win an award.

 

Who’s Mr. Who?

 

Fans of “Ted Lasso” would recognize Nick Mohammed’s character Mr. Swallow, but non-British viewers were likely confused when the actor appeared onstage on roller skates. His appearance, intended as an interlude, provided a good opportunity for a bathroom break. The sound of high heels echoed in the theater as attendees rushed out during his performance.

 

#BAFTAsNotSoWhite

 

The BAFTAs have been criticized in the past for their lack of diversity. This year, however, the effort to increase diversity in the acting categories and the award for best British film finally yielded results. Da’Vine Joy Randolph won supporting actress for “The Holdovers,” and Yasmin Afifi’s “Jellyfish and Lobster” won best British short film, among other examples of diversity.

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Also notable was the sign-language interpreter, who was filmed in one of the theater boxes for broadcast on the BBC throughout the ceremony. However, an accessibility ramp, intended to ensure all winners could get up to the stage, was less successful.

 

Political undertones

 

There were few political statements at this year’s BAFTAs, with almost no mention of global events or the British government. However, “The Zone of Interest” producer Jim Wilson used his acceptance speech for the award for film not in the English language to comment on the film’s themes in relation to current conflicts.

 

Later in the evening, Samantha Morton received the BAFTA Fellowship, the British Academy’s highest honor. During her acceptance speech, Morton, who grew up in foster care, used her platform to acknowledge children living in poverty.

 

In memoriam

 

The rule against clapping during the in memoriam segment was mostly observed, with a few exceptions when certain individuals appeared on-screen.

 

Most supportive actors

 

Ryan Gosling, star of “Barbie,” may not have won supporting actor, but he was certainly the most supportive of the night. Gosling, seated in the front row near Prince William, spent the evening cheering on his fellow nominees and offering standing ovations for many.

 

The biggest standing ovation of the night came at the show’s end as Tennant announced that Michael J. Fox would present the award for best film.

 

The afterparty

 

After the three-hour ceremony, attendees headed to the Southbank Centre for a dinner party. The official afterparty, held in the building next door, featured a DJ and a saxophone player wearing a dog mask.

 

A complete list of tonight’s winners

 

Best Film: “Oppenheimer”

 

Director: Christopher Nolan, “Oppenheimer”

 

Leading Actress: Emma Stone, “Poor Things”

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Leading Actor: Cillian Murphy, “Oppenheimer”

 

Supporting Actress: Da’Vine Joy Randolph, “The Holdovers”

 

Supporting Actor: Robert Downey Jr., “Oppenheimer”

 

Outstanding British Film: “The Zone of Interest”

 

Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer: “Earth Mama”

 

Film Not in the English Language: “The Zone of Interest”

 

Documentary: “20 Days In Mariupol”

 

Animated Film: “The Boy and the Heron”

 

Adapted Screenplay: Cord Jefferson, “American Fiction”

 

Original Screenplay: Justine Triet and Arthur Harari, “Anatomy of a Fall”

 

Original Score: Ludwig Göransson, “Oppenheimer”

 

Costume Design: Holly Waddington, “Poor Things”

 

Production Design: Shona Heath, James Price and Zsuzsa Mihalek, “Poor Things”

 

Special Visual Effects: Tim Barter, Simon Hughes, Dean Koonjul and Jane Paton, “Poor Things”

 

Makeup & Hair: Nadia Stacey, Mark Coulier and Josh Weston, “Poor Things”

 

Editing: Jennifer Lame, “Oppenheimer”

 

Cinematography: Hoyte van Hoytema, “Oppenheimer”

 

Casting: Susan Shopmaker, “The Holdovers”

 

Sound: Johnnie Burn and Tarn Willers, “The Zone of Interest”

 

British Short Animation: “Crab Day”

 

British Short Film: “Jellyfish and Lobster”

 

EE Rising Star: Mia Mckenna-Bruce

 

 

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