Bafta winner Anthony Hopkins skips ceremony to paint in hotel room
FOR most people, winning a Bafta is the pinnacle of their careers, something they wouldn’t miss for the world.
But Sir Anthony Hopkins didn’t accept his Leading Actor gong at last night’s ceremony because he got carried away working on a painting in a Welsh hotel room.
The veteran A-lister, who has won the prize twice before, was absent from the virtual event, with the director of his film The Father, Florian Zeller, collecting it on his behalf.
After the ceremony, Sir Anthony confessed: “I was so astounded. I was sitting here painting, in fact. This room in my hotel. I’m covered in paint.
“I heard a cheer from next door. I thought, ‘What the hell is happening?’ I thought they were watching a football match. Then I got a message from Florian.”
Aside from Sir Anthony’s no-show, Emerald Fennell, the actress who played a young Duchess of Cornwal in The Crown, celebrated a double win.
Crime thriller Promising Young Woman, which she wrote and directed, won Outstanding British Film and Original Screenplay.
Accepting the Outstanding British Film prize last night she said: “I am so grateful for every single person who made this film. It was a labour of love. Everyone did it pretty much for a packet of crisps because they believed in it.
“There are so many people I want to thank. I want to go to all of your houses and kiss you, which I’m not allowed to do for various reasons.”
Although Emerald was one of a handful of British successes, it was US drama Nomadland — about a woman who became a nomad after the 2007 recession — which was named Best Film.
Its star, Frances McDormand, won the Leading Actress award and the film also won for Cinematography and for its director, Chloe Zhao. She became the second woman ever to win in the Director category, following Kathryn Bigelow for The Hurt Locker in 2009.
The evening from London’s Royal Albert Hall was hosted by Dermot O’Leary and Edith Bowman, although the only guests were those who presented awards, including last year’s Leading Actress winner Renee Zellweger and Cynthia Erivo.
It meant the event was virtually laughter-free — particularly as they played it safe with a mind-numbingly boring opening monologue which was enough to make most viewers switch off.
There was one laugh, when Supporting Actress winner Yuh-Jung Youn, from Korea, gave the British public a backhanded compliment while accepting her prize for her role in Minari.
She said: “Every award is meaningful but this one, especially recognised by British people, who are normally very snobbish people, they approve me as a good actress. Thank you so much for the voter.”
But after years of controversy over the overwhelmingly white nominees and winners list, the Baftas did finally manage to strike a fair balance when it came to diversity.
Hopefully that continues next year — but with some more exciting films we may have seen.
I COMMEND hosts Dermot O’Leary and Edith Bowman for their optimism, but making an interesting ceremony out of films from the past year was an impossible task.
Dermot said in his opening: “The film industry has not only survived, but thrived, which is remarkable.”
Err . . . whichever way you look at it, cinemas being closed and practically every major release being delayed doesn’t indicate a thriving industry to me.
We are still waiting for the 25th Bond film No Time To Die, plus Cinderella and Dune, among many others. Most of us haven’t set foot in a cinema for more than 12 months.
They did their best, but trying to suggest the film industry has done anything but nosedive is delusional – and the list of winners shows exactly that.
Some of the gongs had also been doled out in an even more boring broadcast on Saturday night, which at its peak only drew 700,000 viewers.
At least by this time next year we will be in a different situation – and hopefully we’ll be done with virtual awards shows for good.
Pri has eyes on the prize
PRIYANKA Chopra Jonas got glammed up for the bash and spoke to Radio 1 DJ Clara Amfo on the red carpet about life in London after relocating for work last year.
The actress, a guest-presenter with Pitch Perfect star Ana Kendrick and Andra Day, said: “We go to Holland Park almost every day. The dogs love it. I love London, I love the people and just being able to work, I’m grateful for it.”
Invited to spill the beans about the upcoming fourth Matrix movie, in which she stars, Priyanka said with a giggle: “It’s called The Matrix 4, that’s pretty much it.”
A bath-ta for Daniel
DANIEL Kaluuya's plans for celebrating his Supporting Actor win for Judas And The Black Messiah weren’t exactly rock ’n’ roll.
When asked what he’d be doing, the Londoner said: “A walk, a bath, chill out. I’m gonna chill. I do piano lessons, so I may do a bit of piano.”
Daniel is also up for Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars in a fortnight, but he said: “I’m chilled, man. I take every day as it comes. I’m enjoying this. I’ve got to vibe out for this. I’m not thinking about two weeks’ time.”
Rocks star is buckks fizzing
THE overjoyed family of Bukky Bakray jumped on her when it was announced she had won the EE Rising Star award.
The 19-year-old south London actress trained at Theatre Peckham – where Star Wars actor John Boyega was also a student.
Bukky stars in gritty family drama Rocks, which was nominated in seven categories and won the Casting gong.
The delighted young actress said: “I’m gonna pop champagne.
"This is the first time I’ve had alcohol with my mum for a long time. We’re gonna scream and shout.”
DIRECTOR and Fellow- ship winner And Lee said he has his time behind the camera making 1995’s Sense And Sensibility to thank for his career success. He admitted: “My British colleagues were super patient and kind to me, I owe so much to them.”
CHINESE filmmaker Chloe Zhao paid tribute to her upbringing at a British boarding school as she collected her Director award for Nomadland. She said: “I think I just made my teacher at Brighton College really proud.”
TOM Hiddleston handed out a gong and urged the EE Rising Star nominees to embrace the experience, nine years after he was shortlisted for the prize. He said: “I hope they feel it’s just the beginning of even more opportunity. It gives you confidence to keep going.”
Phoebe looking hot
PHOEBE Dynevor looked incredible on the red carpet so no wonder Bridgerton fans use swooning quotes from the show if they see her.
She told how people on the street quote her screen lover Simon (Rege-Jean Page).
Phoebe, who wore a one-shoulder black dress, said: “I get, ‘I burn for you!’ a lot.”
Kidulthood creator Noel Clarke got the Outstanding British Contribution To Cinema gong on Saturday night.
PRINCE Philip was honoured by host Dermot O’Leary who said: “The Duke was Bafta’s first ever president, over 60 years ago, and was the first royal patron, a line that goes all the way through to Bafta’s current president, his grandson the Duke of Cambridge.”
The royal also featured in the In Memoriam segment alongside Barbara Windsor and Sean Connery.
Co-host Edith Bowman said: “The Duke of Edinburgh occupies a special place in Bafta’s history.”
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