The story of King George VI's struggle to overcome a stammer, aided by his devoted wife, dominated the Orange British Academy Film Awards. Colin Firth continued his winning streak by taking the best actor prize for his portrayal of the reluctant monarch. Helena Bonham Carter and Geoffrey Rush won the supporting actor categories.
reports Anita Singh in The Telegraph.
Firth's first Oscar now appears closer than ever. The 50-year-old actor joked that his involvement with the film might never have come about had he not cancelled a doctor's appointment.
The day I had my first meeting with [director] Tom Hooper, I had to postpone a routine but possibly somewhat uncomfortable medical examination. I am pleased to report that the meeting with Tom was a lot more edifying.”
It was Firth's second consecutive best actor Bafta – he won last year for A Single Man. “I like coming here,” he said as he accepted the award.
Natalie Portman won best actress for her role in ballet drama Black Swan, although she could not attend because she is heavily pregnant, and David Fincher won best director for The Social Network.
But the night belonged to The King's Speech, and the most entertaining speech was made by Helena Bonham Carter, named best supporting actress for her performance as Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.
I think I should thank the Royal Family because they have done wonders for my career,” she joked.
The 44-year-old actress, attired in Vivienne Westwood, dedicated the award “to all the best supporting wives in the world, including the Queen Mother herself and my own mum”. Her speech was somewhat rambling but afterwards she was unapologetic. “I know I'm not going to win the Oscar, so for the Baftas I may as well go for it,” she said.
The awards were held at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden and the weather was typically British. Emma Watson was among the stars battling the elements as she trailed the hem of her Valentino gown along the sodden red carpet.
Watson was there to accept the Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema award for the Harry Potter films. The most successful franchise in movie history, they have taken £3.3bn at the box office over the past decade.
Other winning films last night included Inception, Christopher Nolan's mindbending thriller, and The Social Network, the story of Facebook. Tom Hardy won the Orange Wednesdays Rising Star award, the only prize of the night chosen by the public. Sir Christopher Lee, 88, received the Academy Fellowship.
Here's the full list of the winners:
Sir Christopher Lee
Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema
The Harry Potter films
The King's Speech, Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin
Outstanding British Film
The King's Speech
Oustanding debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer
Chris Morris, Four Lions
David Fincher, The Social Network
The King's Speech, David Seidler
The Social Network, Aaron Sorkin
Film Not in the English Language
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Søren Stærmose and Niels Arden Oplev
Toy Story 3, Lee Unkrich
Colin Firth, The King's Speech
Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Geoffrey Rush, The King's Speech
Helena Bonham Carter, The King's Speech
Alexandre Desplat, The King's Speech
True Grit, Roger Deakins
The Social Network, Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter
Inception, Guy Hendrix Dyas, Larry Dias and Doug Mowat
Alice in Wonderland, Colleen Atwood
Inception, Richard King, Lora Hirschberg, Gary A Rizzo and Ed Novick
Special Visual Effects
Inception, Chris Corbould, Paul Franklin, Andrew Lockley, Peter Bebb
Make up and Hair
Alice in Wonderland, Valli O'Reilly, Paul Gooch
The Eagleman Stag, Michael Please
Until the River Runs Red, Paul Wright, Poss Kondeatis
Orange Wednesday's Rising Star Award
Tom Hardy, Inception
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.