‘Joker’ Leads BAFTA Nominations, ‘The Irishman’ And ‘Once Upon a Time’ Follow
Joaquin Phoenix-starrer "Joker", one of the most controversial yet admired movies of 2019, is leading the British Academy of Film and Television Arts nominations with 11 nods while "The Irishman" and 1960s-set "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" also feature prominently in the list.
The nominations are a major Oscar boost for "Joker", which was recognised at the just-concluded Golden Globes for the best actor-drama for Phoenix and best original score.
The film is nominated in almost all the key categories including the best picture, best director for Todd Phillips, actor, cinematography, score, adapted screenplay and editing.
In the best picture category the film will fight it out with Martin Scorsese's "The Irishman" and Quentin Tarantino's revisionist tale "Once Upon a Time..." besides Sam Mendes' Golden Globe-winner "1917" and South Korean filmmaker Bong Joon Ho's class satire "Parasite", which has also snagged nominations in categories such as best director, original screenplay and foreign film.
Both the directors and the actors nominees list is highly competitive this year, featuring the usual suspects in Mendes, Scorsese, Phillips, Tarantino and Bong.
In the best actor category, Phoenix will face a tough fight from Leonardo DiCaprio ("Once Upon a Time in Hollywood"), Adam Driver ("Marriage Story"), Taron Egerton ("Rocketman") and Jonathan Pryce ("The Two Popes").
Renee Zellweger, this year's best actress-drama Golden Globe winner for "Judy", will compete with Jesse Buckley ("Wild Rose"), Scarlett Johansson ("Marriage Story"), Saoirse Ronan ("Little Women") and Charlize Theron ("Bombshell").
The best supporting actor category is populated by acting heavy-weights like Tom Hanks ("A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood"), Anthony Hopkins ("The Two Popes"), Al Pacino ("The Irishman") and Joe Pesci ("The Irishman") with Brad Pitt being the youngest in the list.
Margot Robbie had a great year in cinema and that's reflected in the Bafta nominations where she is competing against herself in the best-supporting actress category with films "Bombshell" and "Once Upon...".
Laura Dern is the front-runner this year for her role of an empathic lawyer in "Marriage Story" while Johansson also features in the supporting list for her role of a mother in "Jojo Rabbit" alongside her "Black Widow" co-star Florence Pugh ("Little Women").
Besides "Parasite", the original screenplay features titles such as "Booksmart", "Knives Out", "Marriage Story" and "Once Upon...". "The Irishman", "Jojo Rabbit", "Joker", "Little Women" and "The Two Popes" are up for best-adapted screenplay Bafta.
In the documentary category, Indian-British filmmaker Asif Kapadia's "Diego Maradona" will compete with "American Factory", "Apollo 11", "For Sama" and "The Great Hack". Disney dominates the animated feature list with "Frozen 2" and "Toy Story 4". "Klaus" and "A Shaun The Sheep Movie: Farmageddon" also figure.
Bafta has a special category to honour the best in British cinema where films "1917", "Bait", "For Sama", "Rocketman", "Sorry We Missed You" and "The Two Popes" are competing for outstanding British film.
"Bait", "For Sama" also feature in the outstanding debut by a British writer, director or producer category along with "Maiden", "Only You" and "Retablo". Nominees for this year's EE rising star award include Golden Globe-winner Awkwafina, Kaitlyn Dever, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Jack Lowden and Micheal Ward
Nominations for technical categories such as cinematography, editing, production design, costume design, make up & hair, sound, special visual effects, British short animation and British short film were also announced.