Australian Academy Awards 2016: ‘Hacksaw Ridge’ sweeps with nine AACTA wins including Best Picture

On Wednesday (Dec. 7), Mel Gibson‘s “Hacksaw Ridge” won nine races at the sixth annual Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) Awards including Best Picture. Gibson also prevailed for helming this hit WWII drama about real-life conscientious objector Desmond Doss who became a hero as did leading man Andrew Garfield, featured player Hugo Weaving (who picked up a bookend to last year’s Supporting Actor prize for “The Dressmaker”) and original scripters Andrew Knight and Robert Schenkkan. The film also picked up prizes for cinematography, film editing, production design and sound.

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Gibson was clearly moved and expressed a deep appreciation for the predominantly Australian cast and crew of the film in an emotional acceptance speech. “I need to thank Australia for making this film.” “Hacksaw Ridge” has performed well so far this awards season, exceeding all expectations. It garnered seven nominations from the Critics Choice Awards (including Best Picture, Director and Actor), a citation as one of the top 10 films of 2016 from the National Board of Review, and Garfield just won Best Actor from the Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association.

The only other multiple winner during the AACTA ceremony at Sydney’s Star Event Center that was broadcast on the Seven Network was “The Daughter,” a reworking of Henrik Ibsen‘s “The Wild Duck.” It claimed Best Actress (newcomer Odessa Young), Best Supporting Actress (Miranda Otto) and Adapted Screenplay for director Simon Stone.

The Australian academy bestows its local industry awards about a month before unveiling its slate for the seven International Awards (picture, director, screenplay and the four acting races). Those prizes will be handed out in Los Angeles in late January.

The AACTAs are becoming an Oscar bellwether much like their BAFTA brethren have done in recent years in the mother country. Last year, the Aussie academy showered “Mad Max: Fury Road” with trophies both at home (10 awards) and in Los Angeles where it won both Best Picture and Director (George Miller). It went on to win six of its 10 Oscar nominations.

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Below is a full list of the AACTA film winners.

BEST PICTURE
“The Daughter”
“Girl Asleep”
“Goldstone”
X – “Hacksaw Ridge”
“Tanna”

BEST DIRECTOR
Rosemary Myers, “Girl Asleep”
Ivan Sen, “Goldstone”
X – Mel Gibson, “Hacksaw Ridge”
Bentley Dean and Martin Butler, “Tanna”

BEST ACTOR
John Brumpton, “Pawno”
X – Andrew Garfield, “Hacksaw Ridge”
Damian Hill, “Pawno”
Ewen Leslie, “The Daughter”

BEST ACTRESS
Maeve Dermody, “Pawno”
Maggie Naouri, “Joe Cinque’s Consolation”
Teresa Palmer, “Hacksaw Ridge”
X – Odessa Young, “The Daughter”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Mark Coles Smith, “Pawno”
Damon Herriman, “Down Under”
Sam Neill, “The Daughter”
X – Hugo Weaving, “Hacksaw Ridge”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Kerry Armstrong, “Pawno”
Rachel Griffiths, “Hacksaw Ridge”
X – Miranda Otto, “The Daughter”
Anna Torv, “The Daughter”

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
“Down Under”
“Goldstone”
X – “Hacksaw Ridge”
“Pawno”

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
X – “The Daughter”
“Girl Asleep”

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
“Girl Asleep”
X – “Hacksaw Ridge”
“Spear”
“Tanna”

BEST FILM EDITING
“The Daughter”
“Girl Asleep”
“Goldstone”
X – “Hacksaw Ridge”

BEST SOUND
“The Daughter”
“Gods of Egypt”
X – “Hacksaw Ridge”
“Tanna”

BEST ORIGINAL MUSIC SCORE
“Boys in the Trees”
“Gods of Egypt”
X – “Tanna”
“Teenage Kicks”

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
“The Daughter”
“Girl Asleep”
“Goldstone”
X – “Hacksaw Ridge”

BEST COSTUME DESIGN
X – “Girl Asleep”
“Gods of Egypt”
“Hacksaw Ridge”
“Spear”

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