BAFTAs & Oscars: A transatlantic love affair

The BAFTAs have foreseen five of the 11 Best Picture Oscar winners — Gladiator” (2000), “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King” (2003), “Slumdog Millionaire” (2008), “The Hurt Locker” (2009) and “The King’s Speech” (2010) — since these kudos were moved up in 2000 to take place while academy members are still voting.


Last year, “The King’s Speech” won seven of its 14 BAFTA bids — Picture, Actor (Colin Firth), Supporting Actor (Geoffrey Rush), Supporting Actress (Helena Bonham Carter), Original Screenplay, Score and Best British Film. At the Oscars, it only repeated for Best Picture, Actor and Original Screenplay. While helmer Tom Hooper had been bested at BAFTA by David Fincher (“The Social Network”), he won the Academy Award. 

At BAFTA, “The Social Network” had batted .500, prevailing in three of its six races — Director, Adapted Screenplay, Editing. It won the latter two at the Oscars as well as Score. And while Natalie Portman (“Black Swan”) repeated as Best Actress at the Oscars, the supporting awards went to “The Fighter” featured players Christian Bale (who had contended at BAFTA) and Melissa Leo (who had not). 

In 2009, “The Hurt Locker” won six of its eight BAFTA bids and repeated at the Oscars for Best Picture, Director (Kathryn Bigelow), Original Screenplay, Editing and Sound. “Avatar” prevailed in just two of its eight BAFTA categories — Production Design and Visual Effects — and also won those at the Oscars as well as Cinematography over BAFTA champ “Hurt Locker.”

“An Education” took just one of its eight nominations with a Best Actress win for Carey Mulligan (“The Blind Side” starring Oscar winner Sandra Bullock was not released in time to contend). “Up in the Air” went one for six winning Adapted Screenplay; it was shut out of the Oscars, losing that writing race to “Precious,” which had come out on top in one of its four BAFTA categories, Supporting Actress (Mo’Nique) who also won at the Oscars. The lone win for “Inglorious Basterds” at both awards was for Supporting Actor Christoph Waltz. The BAFTAs went for native Colin Firth (“A Single Man”) over eventual Oscar winner Jeff Bridges (“Crazy Heart”).

Three years ago, “Slumdog Millionaire” won with BAFTA first as did three of the four Oscar acting champs — Kate Winslet (“The Reader”), Heath Ledger (“The Dark Knight”) and Penelope Cruz (“Vicky Christina Barcelona”). BAFTA Best Actor champ Mickey Rourke (“The Wrestler”) lost the Oscar to Sean Penn (“Milk”).

While home-grown “Atonement” took the 2007 BAFTA Best Picture prize over eventual Oscar winner “No Country for Old Men,” all four BAFTA acting winners — Daniel Day-Lewis (“There Will Be Blood”), Marion Cotillard (“La Vie en Rose”), Javier Bardem (“No Country for Old Men”) and Tilda Swinton (“Michael Clayton”) — went on to repeat at the Oscars.

In 2006, “The Queen” won over the Brits for Best Picture edging out eventual Oscar champ “The Departed.” Again, all four of the acting champs — Forrest Whitaker (“The Last King of Scotland”), Helen Mirren (“The Queen”), Alan Arkin (“Little Miss Sunshine”) and Jennifer Hudson (“Dreamgirls”) went on to Oscar wins.

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