BAFTA Awards: 2017

A bad night for them; a good night for their movie.

The BAFTAs announced today. No major upsets (one mild surprise, though), but this awards race is getting interesting for reasons I’ll delve into…

The full list of nominees and my analysis of the categories can be found here.

Best Film: Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri

So this is either in the position of the previous three winners (Boyhood, The Revenant, and La La Land), which all won here and won Best Picture at the Globes but ended up losing the Oscar, or…this is winning Best Picture. Without a Best Director nomination. My hunch is for the former, but the latter could happen. It’s a really weird year. I still think the Academy will take The Shape of Water, given its guild support…but it’s not a sure thing.

Best British Film: Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri

Wow. First time that’s happened since 2010, when The King’s Speech won both awards…and the Oscar. (The last time before that was all the way back in 1967, when A Man for All Seasons won both awards; however, there was no Best British Film category from 1968 to 1992.) I figured they’d go for Darkest Hour here, but they really went all in on this one. Maybe I’ll understand it someday.

Best Director: Guillermo Del Toro, The Shape of Water

No surprise here whatsoever – the path is very clear for him to win the Oscar. Pity about Christopher Nolan, but Del Toro is a fine choice.

Best Actor: Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour

Gee, how about that?

Best Actress: Frances McDormand, Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri

Out of a competitive category, McDormand has emerged as the far-and-away front-runner. I wouldn’t be totally shocked if she somehow lost, but it would be an upset.

Best Supporting Actor: Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri

Congratulations, fuckhead!

Best Supporting Actress: Allison Janney, I, Tonya

Who’d have thought a movie about Tonya Harding would’ve been a major awards contender in 2017? It deserves to be, but who’d have thought? Anyway, barring a Laurie Metcalf upset (which I wouldn’t mind), this is Janney’s to lose.

Best Original Screenplay: Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri

This will probably win the Oscar. Get Out could still sneak in and take it, with that WGA win (even if Three Billboards wasn’t eligible), but however Best Picture turns out, McDonagh’s got at least one Oscar coming.

Best Adapted Screenplay: Call Me by Your Name

I suppose instead of American Pie, this could be called Italian Peach?

Best Cinematography: Blade Runner 2049

Oh, shit. And he won the ASC last night (and a whole lot else besides). I think Deakins might finally get his Oscar. Can’t imagine anyone will mind, myself included (though Dunkirk and The Shape of Water are both really gorgeously shot…).

Best Editing: Baby Driver

Wow. Over Dunkirk? Okay then. I’m still iffy on predicting it for the Oscar, especially since only one non-Best Picture nominee has won since they expanded the category, but it’s worth noting that the BAFTAs gave Hacksaw Ridge this award last year before it beat out La La Land at the Oscars.

Best Production Design: The Shape of Water

Damn right. I’m pretty sure it’s either this or Blade Runner for the Oscar, and I’ll be just fine with either.

Best Costume Design: Phantom Thread

Did you know you can sew almost anything into the canvas of a coat?

Best Makeup and Hair: Darkest Hour

Gary Oldman damn well better thank the makeup artists when he wins the Oscar.

Best Original Music: The Shape of Water

So you’ve got to figure Shape is good for at least three Oscars. I think it’ll win Picture and that’ll make four – it’s going to be one of those Oscar nights without a real sweeper. But that’s fine.

Best Sound: Dunkirk

I mean, it has to win something, right? It’ll probably take both of the Sound categories at the Oscars as well (at least I hope so).

Best Visual Effects: Blade Runner 2049

It’s this or War for the Planet of the Apes. And I’m just fine with either one.

Best Film Not in the English Language: The Handmaiden

This was Oscar eligible last year (South Korea didn’t submit, however), but whatever. It’s a hell of a movie, even if I would have picked Elle.

Best Documentary: I Am Not Your Negro

Also Oscar eligible last year. Also a hell of a movie.

Best Animated Feature: Coco

They’ll remember you all right, Coco.

Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director, or Producer: I Am Not a Witch – Rungano Nyoni; Emily Morgan

Good for them. I’ve only heard a bit about the film itself, but it sounds intriguing enough.

So here we are, two weeks from the Oscars, and it seems like a lot of categories are sewn up – Director, all four acting categories, both Screenplay categories (Adapted especially), most of the major techs – and Picture is a toss-up largely because Martin McDonagh didn’t get into the Director race. If he had, I’d say it was game over.

But assuming things are sewn up can get you into trouble when they…unravel. So let’s take the next couple of weeks to mull over our options and see if we can’t outwit our assumptions.

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