Sci-fi film edited in a bedroom is a Bafta nominee

It had no formal script, was shot on a shoestring budget, and edited using off-the-shelf software. The fact that sci-fi film Monsters got made at all is rather impressive. Now the film takes its place among the nominees for this year's Baftas, announced yesterday, rounding off a miraculous year for its creator.

Monsters's British writer and director Gareth Edwards decided to make the film after becoming frustrated by the slow-moving Hollywood filmmaking process. The film was shot with four crew, with special effects added in Edwards's bedroom on a budget reportedly under £200,000.

Yesterday, it was nominated for a Bafta in the "Outstanding Debut by a British writer, director or producer" category, alongside Chris Morris's satire Four Lions and Exit Through The Gift Shop by the graffiti artist Banksy.

Speaking yesterday, Mr Edwards told The Independent: "It has been the most insane year of my life by around 100-fold. Every day ends up being a bit like Christmas. You wake up in the morning with an email or a text which would have been a once-in-a-lifetime piece of news a year ago. You'll hear that you're in a film festival, or that this famous person wants to meet you. I am embarrassed to have to justify this success. To balance out the universe someone in the world must be having a really bad time."

The rest of the Baftas, to be held on 13 February, are set to be dominated by The King's Speech, the story of how George VI overcame his stammer, directed by Tom Hooper. The film leads the pack with 14 nominations. Darren Aronofsky's psychological thriller Black Swan received 12 nominations, with Danny Boyle's 127 Hours and the Coen brothers film True Grit each receiving eight nods.

The Baftas best film category, the highest profile gong, sees Black Swan, Inception, The King's Speech, The Social Network and True Grit go head-to-head. Outstanding British Film will be competed by 127 Hours, Mike Leigh's Another Year, Four Lions, The King's Speech and Made in Dagenham, the story of the 1968 strike at the Ford Dagenham car plant.

Front-runner, The King's Speech, has also been nominated for its cinematography, editing, screenplay, music, production design, sound and visual effects.

Monsters is set in a near-future in which a Nasa probe travelling back from Jupiter transports an unwanted extra-terrestrial cargo to Mexico. Aliens colonise central America, and are blocked off by the US military inside an "infected zone", through which two characters must travel to get home. Mr Edwards officially acted as the film's director, writer, cinematographer, production designer and visual effects supervisor.

"It's never been a better time to be a young filmmaker," added Mr Edwards, who began his career working on visual effects for the BBC. His credits include the docu-drama series Seven Wonders of the Industrial World. "You can shoot a film with equipment that people already have and it can look beautiful. The gap between a £100m movie and a £100,000 movie has narrowed and some people can't tell the difference. In a way I feel like I am glad I was born when I was so I could be born into this era of filmmaking. I saw Four Lions and I thought it was excellent. I hope Chris Morris wins. How can you compare different films? It's like comparing different children. It's a real honour. It's great to have films flagged up that may have gone under the radar compared to the bigger Hollywood films."

Mr Edwards is set to enjoy another busy year after he confirmed he is to direct a new Godzilla film co-produced by Hollywood studio Warner Bros. "Again, I feel a bit embarrassed about how lucky I've been, " he said.

Full list of Bafta nominees:

BEST FILM
* Black Swan
* Inception
* The King's Speech
* The Social Network
* True Grit

OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM
* 127 Hours
* Another Year
* Four Lions
* The King's Speech
* Made In Dagenham

OUTSTANDING DEBUT BY A BRITISH WRITER, DIRECTOR OR PRODUCER
* The Arbor: Clio Barnard (director), Tracy O'Riordan (producer)
* Exit Through The Gift Shop: Banksy (director), Jaimie D'Cruz (producer)
* Four Lions: Chris Morris (director/writer)
* Monsters: Gareth Edwards (director/writer)
* Skeletons: Nick Whitfield (director/writer)

DIRECTOR
* 127 Hours, Danny Boyle
* Black Swan, Darren Aronofsky
* Inception, Christopher Nolan
* The King's Speech, Tom Hooper
* The Social Network, David Fincher

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
* Black Swan
* The Fighter
* Inception
* The Kids Are All Right
* The King's Speech

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
* 127 Hours
* The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
* The Social Network
* Toy Story 3
* True Grit

FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
* Biutiful
* The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
* I Am Love
* Of Gods And Men
* The Secret In Their Eyes

ANIMATED FILM
* Despicable Me
* How To Train Your Dragon
* Toy Story 3

LEADING ACTOR
* Javier Bardem, Biutiful
* Jeff Bridges, True Grit
* Jesse Eisenberg, The Social Network
* Colin Firth, The King's Speech
* James Franco, 127 Hours

LEADING ACTRESS
* Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right
* Julianne Moore, The Kids Are All Right
* Natalie Portman, Black Swan
* Noomi Rapace, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
* Hailee Steinfeld, True Grit

SUPPORTING ACTOR
* Christian Bale, The Fighter
* Andrew Garfield, The Social Network
* Pete Postlethwaite, The Town
* Mark Ruffalo, The Kids Are All Right
* Geoffrey Rush, The King's Speech

SUPPORTING ACTRESS
* Amy Adams, The Fighter
* Helena Bonham Carter, The King's Speech
* Barbara Hershey, Black Swan
* Lesley Manville, Another Year
* Miranda Richardson, Made in Dagenham

ORIGINAL MUSIC
* 127 Hours
* Alice In Wonderland
* How To Train Your Dragon
* Inception
* The King's Speech

CINEMATOGRAPHY
* 127 Hours
* Black Swan
* Inception
* The King's Speech
* True Grit

EDITING
* 127 Hours
* Black Swan
* Inception
* The King's Speech
* The Social Network

PRODUCTION DESIGN
* Alice In Wonderland
* Black Swan
* Inception
* The King's Speech
* True Grit

COSTUME DESIGN
* Alice In Wonderland
* Black Swan
* The King's Speech
* Made In Dagenham
* True Grit

SOUND
* 127 Hours
* Black Swan
* Inception
* The King's Speech
* True Grit

SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS
* Alice In Wonderland
* Black Swan
* Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 1
* Inception
* Toy Story 3

MAKE UP AND HAIR
* Alice In Wonderland
* Black Swan
* Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 1
* The King's Speech
* Made In Dagenham

SHORT ANIMATION
* The Eagleman Stag
* Matter Fisher
* Thursday

SHORT FILM
* Connect
* Lin
* Rite
* Turning
* Until The River Runs Red

THE ORANGE WEDNESDAYS RISING STAR AWARD (voted for by the public)
* Gemma Arterton
* Andrew Garfield
* Tom Hardy
* Aaron Johnson
* Emma Stone

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