Kathryn Bigelow wins battle of 'exes' as 'Hurt Locker' storms Baftas

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Carey Mulligan takes Best Actress while Colin Firth awarded Best Actor

If the Bafta Awards had been pitched as a battle of the 'exes' between the Hollywood director, James Cameron's $300m (£200m) animation movie, Avatar, and his former partner, Kathryn Bigelow's low budget film, The Hurt Locker, it was an outright win for the ex-wife.

Both films had received eight Bafta nominations but it was Bigelow's David which triumphed over Cameron's Goliath by taking home a clutch of six awards – including the Best Director and Best Film prizes – for her gritty Iraq drama featuring an American bomb disposal unit. The British film An Education had also been nominated for eight awards but while, like Avatar, it mostly missed out it did clinch one of the main prizes – that of best actress for Carey Mulligan.

But for Bigelow it was a night to remember with her Indie film the star of the show. Awards included best original screenplay, as well as for editing, sound and cinematography. Clearly overcome by the flush of accolades, she said: "I would like to dedicate (the film) to never abandoning the need to find a resolution for peace."

The film's main rival, Avatar, is reputed to be the most expensive film ever made and has reaped $2bn in takings yet picked up just two awards - production design and special visual effects. Attention will now turn to the Oscars, where Avatar and The Hurt Locker are pitted against each other with nine nominations apiece.

Carey Mulligan picked up the Best Actress Bafta award for her role in An Education, a £4m drama based on the memoirs of the journalist, Lyn Barber. It is an honour that bodes well for Mulligan who has also been nominated for an Oscar for the same role; actresses who have won this accolade in the past four years – Reece Witherspoon, Helen Mirren, Marion Cotillard and Kate Winslet – have all gone on to win an Oscar.

Mulligan, who stands to win an American Academy Award in Los Angeles next month, appeared overwhelmed by her victory above her fellow nominees including Meryl Streep and Audrey Tautou. "I didn't expect this at all," she said, thanking the writer, Nick Hornby, for creating "such a brilliant character" in his screenplay.

Colin Firth appeared equally unprepared as he won Best Actor for his part in Tom Ford's directorial debut, A Single Man, based on the story by Christopher Isherwood. Firth, who is also up for an Oscar, suggested that he had almost turned the part down but was distracted from making the phone call to the director by a man who came to his home to repair his fridge.

"I'd like to thank the fridge guy," he said. He had been up against George Clooney, and the British actor, Andy Serkis, among others.

Fish Tank, a socially realist film featuring a working class teenager's relationship with her mother's boyfriend, starring Katie Jarvis and Michael Fassbinder, won a Bafta for Outstanding British Film, above An Education. Andrea Arnold, commended the academy for giving her an award for a film that is "not necessarily an easy ride".

Duncan Jones made a tearful speech while collecting his gong for Best Debut for a British writer, director or producer. Jones – who is the son of David Bowie and was formerly known as Zowie Bowie – was honoured for his first feature film, Moon, a sci-fi thriller starring Sam Rockwell.

The film features an astronaut who is stranded on the Moon, with suspicions that he has been cloned, and it was partly financed by Trudi Styler, the wife of the singer, Sting.

Jones, who was up against Sam Taylor Wood for her biopic on John Lennon, Nowhere Boy, was visibly moved. He said it had "taken me an awfully long time to decide what I want to do with my life and finally I have found what I love doing."

Afterwards, he said: "My interest in science fiction comes from my dad being a dad," he said.

Monique Imes, known as Mo'Nique, picked up the Best Supporting Actress for her role in Precious, as the abusive mother of the eponymous sexually abused teenage. She had only a week earlier won a Golden Globe for the same role. The Austrian actor, Christoph Waltz, took the Best Supporting Actor for his role as an SS colonel in Quentin Tarantino's bloody Nazi epic, Inglourious Basterds.

A Prophet, Jacque Audiard's French prison thriller, won the prize for best film in a foreign language, above Michael Haneke's The White Ribbon, which picked up last year's main prize at the Cannes film Festival. Prince William, who succeeds Lord Attenborough as Bafta's president this year, was at the ceremony to present Vanessa Redgrave with a British Academy Fellowship. In his speech in front of the actors filling the main hall of the Royal Opera House in London, he said it was a "great honour" to take over from Attenborough while Redgrave praised the Prince for his "intelligence, humility and kindness".

The Baftas have become an increasingly accurate predictor for the Oscars, staged in Los Angeles. Danny Boyle's Slumdog Millionaire dominated the Baftas last year before going on to win eight Oscars.

News

literature

News
Dermot O'Leary attends the X Factor Wembley Arena auditions at Wembley on August 1, 2014 in London, England.

television

News
news
Arts and Entertainment
At this year's SXSW festival in Austin, Texas

Music Why this music festival is still the place to spot the next big thing

Arts and Entertainment
Russell Tovey, Myanna Buring and Julian Rhind Tutt star in Banished
tvReview: The latest episode was a smidgen less depressing... but it’s hardly a bonza beach party
Arts and Entertainment
‘The Royals’ – a ‘twisted, soapy take on England’s first family’
tv Some of the characters appear to have clear real-life counterparts
News
Brooks is among a dozen show-business professionals ever to have achieved Egot status
people
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
A cut above: Sean Penn is outclassed by Mark Rylance in The Gunman
film review
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
James Franco and Zachary Quinto in I Am Michael

Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight

Arts and Entertainment
A scene from the movie 'Get Hard'
tvWill Ferrell’s new film Get Hard receives its first reviews
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: David Cameron (Mark Dexter), Nick Clegg (Bertie Carvel) and Gordon Brown (Ian Grieve)
tvReview: Ian Grieve gets another chance to play Gordon Brown... this is the kinder version
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman in the first look picture from next year's Sherlock special

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Because it wouldn’t be Glastonbury without people kicking off about the headline acts, a petition has already been launched to stop Kanye West performing on the Saturday night

music
Arts and Entertainment
Molly Risker, Helen Monks, Caden-Ellis Wall, Rebekah Staton, Erin Freeman, Philip Jackson and Alexa Davies in ‘Raised by Wolves’

TV review
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
James May, Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond in the Top Gear Patagonia Special

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Game of Thrones will run for ten years if HBO gets its way but showrunners have mentioned ending it after seven

Game of Thrones
Arts and Entertainment
Mans Zelmerlow will perform 'Heroes' for Sweden at the Eurovision Song Contest 2015

music
Arts and Entertainment
Elizabeth (Heida Reed) and Ross Poldark (Aiden Turner) in the BBC's remake of their 1975 original Poldark

Poldark review
Arts and Entertainment
Daniel Craig as James Bond in Skyfall

Mexican government reportedly paying Bond producers for positive portrayal in new filmfilm
Arts and Entertainment
Disney’s flying baby elephant is set to return in live-action format
filmWith sequels, prequels and spin-offs, Disney plays it safe... and makes a pachyderm
Arts and Entertainment
Nazrin with Syf, Camden
photography
News
The QI Elves photographed at the Soho Theatre. They are part of a team of researchers who find facts for the television programme 'QI'.
people
Arts and Entertainment
‘The Royals’ – a ‘twisted, soapy take on England’s first family’
tv0-star review: Sean O'Grady gives it his best shot anyway
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

    Promises, promises

    But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
    The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

    The death of a Gaza fisherman

    He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
    Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
    Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

    The only direction Zayn could go

    We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
    Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

    Spells like teen spirit

    A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
    Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
    Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

    Licence to offend in the land of the free

    Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
    From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

    From farm to fork in Cornwall

    One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, DJ Taylor
    How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

    How to make your own Easter egg

    Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

    Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

    Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
    Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

    Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

    The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
    Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

    Cricket World Cup 2015

    Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
    The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

    Michael Calvin's Last Word

    Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing