‘Argo’ Named Best Film at BAFTA Awards

by Chris Lee

Los Angeles Times (MCT)

11 February 2013

 

LOS ANGELES — Director-producer-star Ben Affleck’s historical drama “Argo” continued its late-inning awards sweep Sunday, winning a British Academy of Film and Television Arts award for best film.

Although snubbed by 2013 Oscar balloters in the best director category, Affleck also clinched a BAFTA for directing in a year that saw Steven Spielberg (“Lincoln”) and “Les Miserables” director Tom Hooper shut out of the British Academy’s film awards.

“Argo” collected three BAFTAs in all, including William Goldenberg’s win for editing. “Lincoln,” meanwhile — the odds-on BAFTA favorite with 10 nominations heading into Sunday’s event — walked off with a single prize: Daniel Day-Lewis’ win for leading actor.

In the leading actress category, BAFTA voters honored age over beauty, with 85-year-old “Amour” star Emmanuelle Riva trumping her glamazon competition — “Silver Linings Playbook” co-lead Jennifer Lawrence, “Zero Darky Thirty” star Jessica Chastain, “Rust and Bone’s” Marion Cotillard and the relatively youthful 67-year old Helen Mirren, nominated for her turn in “Hitchcock.”

Austrian actor Christoph Waltz landed a supporting actor BAFTA for his performance as dentist-turned-bounty hunter King Schultz in the slave revenge caper-spaghetti Western “Django Unchained.” He edged out “Argo’s” Alan Arkin, “The Master” co-star Philip Seymour Hoffman and Javier Bardem’s bow as a Bond villain in “Skyfall.”

Presenter George Clooney handed the supporting actress statuette to Anne Hathaway for her turn as the forelorn prostitute Fantine in “Les Miserables.” Hathaway bested Amy Adams’ performance in “The Master,” Judi Dench in “Skyfall” and Helen Hunt’s turn as a sex surrogate in “The Sessions” for the win.

David O. Russell earned the BAFTA for adapted screenplay for “Silver Linings Playbook,” and Quentin Tarantino was honored for original screenplay for “Django Unchained.”

Pixar Animation’s “Brave” nabbed an award for animated feature. And “Searching for Sugarman,” about the rise, descent into obscurity and pop cultural resurrection of the folk-rock performer Rodriguez, claimed the BAFTA for documentary.

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