Baftas 2024: An Emotional Rollercoaster with Canine Charisma and Intriguing Dancefloor Mysteries

Watch: Bafta Awards 2024 highlights

Bafta Film Awards proved to be an unforgettable evening, with one standout star shining brightly among the winners. Oppenheimer, a mesmerizing film that captivated audiences and critics alike, claimed well-deserved recognition during the ceremony.

Bafta behind the scene : David Tennant’s Canine Companion, Barry Keoghan’s Sophie Ellis-Bextor Fan Moment, and Da’Vine Joy Randolph’s Flirtatious Encounter with Chiwetel Ejiofor: Unforgettable Highlights from the Ceremony.

Bring on the Anglophiles

Robert Downey, Jr bafta awards
Robert Downey Jr won best supporting actor for his role in Oppenheimer bafta awards
[GETTY IMAGES]

Lack of British Male Nominees and Rosamund Pike’s Perspective: Bafta Celebrates International Talent

This year’s Bafta awards saw an absence of British male nominees in the Best Actor and Supporting Actor categories. Rosamund Pike, a nominee for Best Supporting Actress, expressed her lack of faith in British people rallying around their own on the red carpet but expressed her delight in being nominated.

However, the presence of international stars like Emma Stone and Robert Downey Jr. brought a wave of appreciation from across the pond. Stone, who won Best Actress for her role in “Poor Things,” thanked her dialect coach during her acceptance speech, highlighting the challenges of mastering an English accent. She also learned a new British slang term, “having a chinwag,” backstage.

War Horse

Adding to the transatlantic connection, comedian and actor Keegan-Michael Key presented an award entirely in an English accent, showcasing his versatility. Downey Jr., the recipient of the Best Supporting Actor award, credited Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan’s “British sensibility” as a contributing factor to his success.

Another US star, Da’Vine Joy Randolph, showcased her passion for British culture. With roots in London’s West End and training at the British American Drama Academy in Oxford, Randolph expressed her deep appreciation for British theater. She recalled being profoundly moved by the production of “War Horse” at the National Theatre, a transformative experience that led her to pursue a career in the UK.

The Bafta awards celebrated the international nature of talent, showcasing the influence and cross-cultural connections between the British and American entertainment industries.

More Da’Vine Joy

Da'Vine Joy Randolph
,Da’Vine seemed thrilled with her new companion[GETTY IMAGES]

Earlier in the evening, the talented actress took the stage to accept her well-deserved award for Best Supporting Actress, honoring her portrayal of the grieving mother, Mary, in the film “The Holdovers.”

In a delightful moment, as she approached the stage to receive the prize from acclaimed actor Chiwetel Ejiofor, she couldn’t resist complimenting him, saying, “You’re so handsome.” Indeed, Ejiofor looked impeccable in a timeless black tuxedo by Lanvin.

Her emotions overflowed as she expressed her gratitude for her co-star, Paul Giamatti, and once more when she spoke about the depth of her character. With heartfelt sincerity, she acknowledged the countless Marys throughout history who never had the opportunity to grace a stage in London, wearing a beautiful gown. She acknowledged the weighty responsibility she felt in portraying Mary’s story, a responsibility she did not take lightly. Her words resonated deeply, evoking emotions in the audience, and many found themselves welling up alongside her.zAdding a touch of humor, she later brought laughter to journalists when she playfully used a well-known British word beginning with ‘b’ in response to a question about the unconventional decision to release “The Holdovers” in the UK in January, despite its Christmas setting. The word choice brought lightness and amusement to the conversation, leaving no doubt as to the word’s meaning and eliciting joyous laughter from those present.

Shout-out to the Oppenhomies

In a memorable moment, Best Actor winner Cillian Murphy left his teenage sons cringing as he affectionately referred to his colleagues as “Oppenhomies” during his acceptance speech—a gesture that delighted the audience.

Notably, Murphy became the first Irish-born performer to receive the prestigious Best Actor Bafta award. Expressing his immense pride, he shared, “As a proud Irishman, this means a great deal to me.” He went on to express his gratitude for the overwhelming support he received, with people approaching him on the streets, claiming to have seen his film “Oppenheimer” multiple times—five, six, or even seven times. Murphy humbly acknowledged the impact of such dedication, finding it both humbling and inspiring. He concluded by celebrating the remarkable year that cinema had witnessed.

Considering the film’s lengthy runtime of three hours, the idea of watching it six or seven times might indeed be a bit too much for most.

Tennant triumph

David Tennant and dog
David Tennant also brought along doggy accessories [GETTY IMAGES]

This year, host David Tennant charmed audiences with his infectious enthusiasm and a genuinely funny script, proving to be an all-round success. His natural charisma captivated viewers, and his ability to infuse humor into the event was widely appreciated. Notably, Tennant’s fashion choices stood out, as he fearlessly sported a combination of kilt, sporran, and sparkly epaulettes—a unique ensemble that only a few could carry off with such flair.

Adding to the delightful atmosphere, Tennant brought a furry companion to the Baftas—a dog named Bark Ruffalo, cleverly playing on the canine theme that has been prevalent throughout this awards season. This playful touch added an extra dose of charm to the event, reminiscent of the dog from “Anatomy of a Fall” who made an appearance at the Oscars luncheon the previous week.

Tennant’s humor extended to the audience as well. He playfully referred to Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling as the “Barbie crew,” introducing them as the camera panned to their stunning presence. The mention of “the ugly corner” added a humorous twist to the glamorous setting. As a fitting conclusion, Tennant signed off the show with the iconic line, “Come on Barbie, let’s go party,” leaving a lasting impression and providing another memorable highlight of the evening.

Michael J Fox was a moment

Despite not being on the confirmed guest list ahead of the awards, the presence of Back to the Future legend Michael J. Fox as a presenter for the Best Picture award was an exhilarating surprise. The audience erupted in a standing ovation for the beloved star, who has been battling Parkinson’s disease since his diagnosis at the young age of 29. Given his rare public appearances, seeing him on the stage was truly a thrill.

In the years since his diagnosis, now at the age of 62, Fox has become a dedicated advocate for Parkinson’s research. Through The Michael J. Fox Foundation, he has raised millions of dollars for research into finding a cure and has worked tirelessly to raise awareness about the disease. His commitment and resilience resonate deeply with people around the world.

The impact of Fox’s appearance was palpable, reaching beyond the confines of the Baftas ceremony. Many individuals took to social media, sharing how his presence on stage moved them to tears. It served as a poignant reminder of his enduring spirit and his unwavering dedication to making a difference in the lives of those affected by Parkinson’s disease.

Saltburn’s night was bittersweet

Sophie Ellis-Bextor
,Sophie Ellis-Bextor performed with a troupe of voguing dancers [ GETTY IMAGES ]

Emerald Fennell’s Thriller Dominates Headlines, Sophie Ellis Bextor Adds Sparkle

Despite not winning any of its five nominations, Emerald Fennell’s twisted thriller continued to make waves and dominate headlines at the Baftas. One standout moment was when Sophie Ellis Bextor took the stage to perform her hit song “Murder on the Dancefloor.” The 2002 track experienced a resurgence in popularity after being featured in the film’s notorious final scene, where Barry Keoghan’s character, Oliver, dances unclothed around his grand estate.

Fortunately, Keoghan opted not to re-enact his character’s performance and remained comfortably seated. However, the camera did capture his enjoyment of the energetic performance, providing a glimpse of his enthusiastic response. The combination of Fennell’s captivating film and Ellis Bextor’s lively performance added an extra layer of excitement to the evening, ensuring that the film’s presence lingered in the minds of both attendees and viewers alike.

Hugh Grant’s deadpan delight

Rhyme and Serious Themes at the Baftas: Grant’s Playful Presentation and Thought-Provoking Winners

Hugh Grant, despite facing some initial criticism for his role as an Oompa-Loompa in the hit film “Wonka,” delighted the audience with a rhyming presentation as he announced the Best Director award. In keeping with his character, Grant playfully recited, “Oompa-Loompa, doompity-dee, now the best director categor-ee, Oompa Loompa doompity-dong, most of these films were frankly too long, Oompa Loompa doompity daa, but for some reason, the nominees are…” His lighthearted approach added an element of charm to the ceremony.

War in the spotlight

However, amidst the fun and frivolity, the Baftas also delved into serious themes. “The Zone of Interest” emerged as a standout, winning three awards, including Outstanding British Film. The chilling story revolves around the head of Auschwitz, who resides next to the death camp with his young family. During his acceptance speech for Best Film Not in the English Language, producer James Wilson shared a poignant insight. He mentioned a letter he received from a friend who couldn’t stop contemplating the metaphorical walls people choose not to look behind in their lives. Wilson drew attention to the importance of caring about innocent lives lost in various conflict zones, from Gaza and Yemen to Mariupol and Israel, highlighting the shared responsibility to value humanity globally.

“20 Days in Mariupol” claimed the Best Documentary award. Director Mstyslav Chernov, in an emotional interview with the BBC’s Colin Paterson, expressed his hope to be alive by the next Baftas. The film captures the harrowing experiences of a group of Ukrainian journalists trapped in the besieged city of Mariupol during the Russian invasion. Chernov emphasized the significance of giving voice to Ukrainians and continuing to shed light on the ongoing situation. Grateful for the support of the people of Mariupol, he dedicated the award to them, acknowledging their assistance and resilience throughout the journey.

The Baftas, therefore, offered a blend of entertainment and thought-provoking content, encompassing both playful moments and profound reflections on the current state of the world.

Samantha Morton dedicates award to children in care

Samantha Morton
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Bafta Fellowship for Samantha Morton and Representation in the Industry

Samantha Morton, known for her successful TV career in shows like “The Walking Dead” and her roles in films such as “Minority Report” and “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” received the prestigious Bafta Fellowship, the highest honorary accolade of the organization. During her acceptance speech, Morton shared the importance of representation for individuals from her background in films and television.

Recalling the impact of watching Ken Loach’s “Kes” in her classroom, Morton expressed how seeing poverty and characters like herself on the screen had a profound effect on her. She emphasized that representation matters and dedicated her award to every child who has been in or is currently in the care system, acknowledging their struggles and resilience.

In reflecting on her journey, Morton stated that film had transformed her life and led her to this moment. She stressed the power of storytelling to change lives and encouraged her younger self and others to persevere, emphasizing their significance and value.

Speaking backstage, Morton addressed challenges faced by the British film industry, calling for the recognition and investment in homegrown productions rather than solely serving as a service industry for American projects. She highlighted the need for a dedicated cultural and sports minister and a deeper understanding of the billion-dollar industry’s potential.

Matthew Perry upset

In a separate incident, there was some concern regarding Matthew Perry, the former Friends star, not being mentioned in the In Memoriam segment. However, Bafta clarified that Perry would be included in the obituary montage for its television awards taking place in May.

The Baftas not only recognized Morton’s outstanding career but also highlighted the importance of representation and the need for support and investment in the British film industry.

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