Blade Runner 2049, Three Billboards & The Shape of Water Lead BAFTA Noms
The British Academy of Television Arts has announced the nominations for their film awards for 2018, known as the BAFTAs, with Guillermo del Toro’s glorious creature feature, The Shape of Water, netting a best 12 nominations. Del Toro’s surprisingly tender film, which won him a Golden Globe for Best Director and Best Score for composer Alexandre Desplat is nominated for Best Film, Director, Actress, Score, and Original Screenplay, among others. This is a haul Doug Jones’ aquatic fish-man could appreciate. Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, a major winner at the Globes (Best Motion Picture Drama, Best Screenplay, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor) tied with Joe Wright’s Winston Churchill film Darkest Hour (for which star Gary Oldman took home a Globe for Best Actor) with nine BAFTA nominations.
We’re also thrilled that Denis Villeneuve’s brilliant sci-fi sequel, Blade Runner 2049, garnered eight BAFTA noms. This beautiful film, crafted with such loving attention and detail, has been (in our eyes) overlooked thus far due to less-than-stellar box office (it’s fared much better overseas). Blade Runner 2049’s eight nominations include nods for Best Director, Cinematography (Roger Deakins is a living legend and his work here is impeccable), Production Design and Score.
The BAFTA awards are a decent litmus test for the Oscars because, unlike the Golden Globes, which are selected by the 90 members of the Hollywood Foreign Press, the BAFTAs are selected by film industry professionals. As BBC America pointed out last year, since 2001 the BAFTA winner for Best Picture has won the Oscar for Best Picture exactly 50% of the time:
“They’ve predicted the Best Picture eight times out of a possible 16: Best Film BAFTA award-winning films Gladiator (2001), The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2004), Slumdog Millionaire (2009), The Hurt Locker (2010), The King’s Speech (2011), The Artist (2012), Argo (2013) and 12 Years a Slave (2014) all went on to win the Best Picture Oscar.
“In recent years, BAFTA has moved away from its reputation as an Oscar oracle: Last year, for instance, they went with The Revenant over eventual Oscar winner Spotlight, and in 2015 they opted for Boyhood over Academy favorite Birdman.”
If there’s a BAFTA blind spot, it’s for distinctly American films (despite Three Billboards being utterly American in setting, story and cast, its’ writer/director is British, the son of Irish parents)—hence the dearth of awards for Greta Gerwig’s Lady Bird and Jordan Peele’s Get Out.
Rounding out the Best Film category is Luca Guadagnino’s Call Me By Your Name and Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk.
Check out the complete list here.
Featured image: The Shape of Water‘s theatrical poster. Courtesy Fox Searchlight.