‘Moon,’ Carey Mulligan, Tom Hardy take BIFA Awards

Posted by · 3:28 pm · December 6th, 2009

Tom Hardy in BronsonThe British Independent Film Awards really spread the wealth this year, with only two films — “Moon” and “Fish Tank” — taking more than one award. In a slightly surprising result, Duncan Jones’s sci-fi debut claimed the night’s top prize, Best British Independent Film, as well as Best Debut Director honors.

Meanwhile, “Fish Tank,” which entered the ceremony with the most nominations, took a well-deserved pair of awards: Best Director for Andrea Arnold (the first woman ever to receive the honor) and Most Promising Newcomer for 18 year-old sensation Katie Jarvis.

Jarvis lost the Best Actress award, however, to Carey Mulligan for “An Education” — one of the night’s few winners likely to figure prominently in the awards race across the pond. (This in stark contrast to last year’s BIFA awards, which were all about “Slumdog Millionaire.”)

In a just world, we’d be saying the same thing about BIFA’s choice for Best Actor: the astonishing Tom Hardy in “Bronson.” It’s sad to see work this dazzling not even entering the Oscar discussion, but at least Hardy gets to take home some hardware for his efforts. (Don’t count on BAFTA acknowledging him, after all.)

Below the line, I’m thrilled to see recognition for “Mugabe and the White African” in the documentary category, as well as a technical citation for DP Greig Fraser’s ravishing work on “Bright Star.”

Not every winner is the one I’d have chosen myself — color me puzzled that Anne Marie-Duff, perfectly good in “Nowhere Boy,” beat her film-stealing co-star Kristin Scott Thomas to the Best Supporting Actress award — but it’s a solid list of winners, while the generous distribution of prizes bespeaks another strong year for British cinema.

Full list of winners below. (We listed the nominations here.)

Best British Independent Film: “Moon”
Best Director: Andrea Arnold, “Fish Tank”
Best Actor: Tom Hardy, “Bronson”
Best Actress: Carey Mulligan, “An Education”
Best Supporting Actor: John Henshaw, “Looking for Eric”
Best Supporting Actress: Anne-Marie Duff, “Nowhere Boy”
Best Screenplay: Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Armando Iannucci and Tony Roche, “In the Loop”
Best Foreign Film: “Let the Right One In”
Best Documentary: “Mugabe and the White African”
Douglas Hickox Award (Best Debut Director): Duncan Jones, “Moon”
Most Promising Newcomer: Katie Jarvis, “Fish Tank”
Best Technical Achievement: Greig Fraser, “Bright Star”
Best Achievement in Production: “Bunny and the Bull”
Raindance Award: “Down Terrace”
Best British Short: Sam Taylor-Wood, “Love You More”
Richard Harris Award (Outstanding Contribution to British Film): Daniel Day-Lewis
Variety Award: Sir Michael Caine
Special Jury Prize: Baz Bamigboye

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11 responses so far

  • 1 12-06-2009 at 4:09 pm

    carrie said...

    i’m happy to see the work of Tom Hardy in “bronson” celebrated!
    as i liked “moon” as i don’t believe it was the best indie movie of the year but Duncan Jones deserves his prize

  • 2 12-06-2009 at 4:23 pm

    Sieben said...

    Pleasantly surprised at Moon’s win, and somewhat bemused with Henshaw’s and Marie-Duff’s, but Tom Hardy absolutely deserves it. What a great Best Actor lineup that was, though, just between him, Capaldi, and Rockwell.

  • 3 12-06-2009 at 4:37 pm

    Jason said...

    Speaking of actors not in awards conversation, whatever happened to Peter Sarsgaard? He’s the best thing about An Education. The film practically falls apart once he leaves. What happened to all of that early buzz? I thought he’d be a lock for best supporting.

  • 4 12-06-2009 at 5:07 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Jason: With respect to Sarsgaard, who I think is strong in the film, he never had (or deserved, to my mind) as much buzz as Alfred Molina, which doesn’t help him.

    Sieben: I agree the award for Henshaw is an odd one. Michael Fassbender and Alfred Molina can count themselves robbed, as far as I’m concerned.

  • 5 12-06-2009 at 5:25 pm

    Simone said...

    I thought Michael Fassbender had this one in the bag too, but I reckon since he won last year’s Best Actor for Hunger, they wanted to spread the love all over. But I’m glad that Andrea is the FIRST female director to win the award, and kudos to Katie Jarvis.

    I’m intrigued about ‘Moon’, can’t wait to see it. And I’m also interested in Bronson too because of Tom Hardy. Just saw him in Star Trek Nemesis last week – cool actor.

    Guy, why do you think Tom will be ignored by BAFTA? I’m not even going to ask about Oscar.

  • 6 12-06-2009 at 5:47 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    For the same reasons that they sidelined “Hunger” last year — ever since they moved up in the awards calendar to become Oscar precursors, BAFTA has increasingly little time for challenging British independents that haven’t crossed over internationally. (Or even ones that have — see “Happy-Go-Lucky.”)

  • 7 12-06-2009 at 5:47 pm

    Jim T said...

    Simone, BAFTAs are trying to predict the Oscars. They won’t take chances.

  • 8 12-06-2009 at 5:51 pm

    Simone said...

    I enjoyed the BAFTAs previously because they were a little different than the Oscars. Oh those where the days.

    If anyone is interested, here is an excellent interview with Fassbender at the DP/30 blog. It’s a .mov video so it will take a while to download, but he talks about Fish Tank and Inglourious Basterds as well as his training as an actor. One day I hope he wins a BAFTA or Oscar.


  • 9 12-06-2009 at 6:11 pm

    Patryk said...

    Really happy for Tom Hardy. I was lucky enough to have seen it in a one week run last week – I just don’t get why the performance hasn’t gotten much media attention over here.

  • 10 12-06-2009 at 8:04 pm

    Patricia said...

    Terrific that Tom Hardy is getting recognition for his outstanding and really unique performance and that Greig Fraser won for his stunning work on “Bright Star.” I’m very disappointed, particularly as an American, that you say the Brit awards are looking more to what happens in LA than recognizing your own art and craft. But on the other hand, there are grumbles here that the Brits have taken over the Oscars. Poetic justice?

  • 11 12-25-2009 at 9:12 am

    Big Braveheart said...

    Tom Hardy was absolutely brilliant in Bronson
    and deserves his award for what may have been
    one of the best ( and slightly mental ) British
    performances of the last twenty years. He should be up for an Oscar and would love to see a canpaign for him to win!! Why not?