The next round of Award Season nominations have been announced this morning as the British Film Academy released its list of contenders for the 2009 BAFTAs. Indie darling Slumdog Millionaire garnered 11 nominations (including Best Picture) as did big-name Hollywood champ The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (which also secured a nom for Best Picture). These films and others will compete for BAFTAs when the award ceremony takes place in the UK on February 8:
“Slumdog Millionaire,” the rags-to-riches tale of an Indian game show winner, scooped 11 nominations for the British Academy Film Awards (BAFTAs) on Thursday, days after leading the way at the Golden Globes. The movie is a contender for categories including best film, best director for Danny Boyle, best leading actor for Dev Patel and best supporting actress for Freida Pinto. The BAFTAs are Britain’s leading film and television awards and the ceremony will take place on February 8, hosted by television presenter Jonathan Ross. Ross is currently suspended from the BBC after a row over lewd telephone calls to actor Andrew Sachs but his television chat show is due to return next week. “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” based on a short story by F. Scott Fitzgerald and starring Cate Blanchett, also received 11 nominations, including best film and best director for David Fincher. Among other leading contenders were “The Dark Knight” — the latest Batman movie starring the late Heath Ledger as the Joker — with nine nominations, and “Changeling,” directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Angelina Jolie, with eight. Kate Winslet, who made a highly emotional acceptance speech at the Golden Globes after winning two gongs, is nominated twice in the BAFTA leading actress category, for “Revolutionary Road” and “The Reader.” “Slumdog Millionaire” won four awards at the Golden Globes earlier this month, leading to predictions of success at next month’s Oscars.
It’s kinda brills that little Dev Patel (who stars in Slumdog and played Anwar in Skins) is going head to head with überstar Brad Pitt. Love it! It looks like we’re getting a pretty clear picture of which films will be showing up again when the Academy Award nominations are announced next week. Slumdog Millionaire stole my heart, so I’ll be rootin’ for that film. I cannot believe that a little Indian film can not only go head-to-head with an overbloated Hollywood production but also stands a real chance of coming out on top. It also looks like it’s going to be a very good year for Kate Winslet. Her performances in both The Reader and Revolutionary Road seem to be resonating well with award voters. I suspect she’ll be bringing home at least one more trophy in the coming weeks. Next up, the Oscar noms … will there be any surprises? My guess is no but we’ll have to wait until the 22nd to find out.