Sunday saw the 15th annual Moet British Independent Film Awards, in London’s Old Billingsgate.
Presented by James Nesbitt, himself a previous winner, the nominees and winners were a mix of both the well-known and unfamiliar. The Variety Award was won by someone you might just have heard of, a certain Jude Law. Much of the rest, however, were picked up by names that don’t immediately trip off the tongue, but who no doubt have big futures ahead of them.
One in particular is Sally El Hoisani with her film My Brother the Devil. The night capped an exceptional year for this critically acclaimed work, as James Floyd received the Most Promising Newcomer gong for his role in the picture, adding to the multiple awards it has bagged at several international festivals in 2012 (not to mention the 100% fresh rating it currently holds on Rotten Tomatoes). Berberian Sound Studio was the biggest success story overall, with four wins to its credit, with Broken and The Imposter both landing a brace. A special mention should go to Rory Kinnear (Broken), who fought off well-established players such as Billy Connolly and Cillian Murphy to take the title of Best Supporting Actor.
These days of course, an awards ceremony just wouldn’t be the same without some kind of lifetime achievement. BIFA’s version of this is in honour of arguably the Emerald Isle’s finest export since the rest of the world began sipping pints of the Black Stuff, Richard Harris. How apt, then, that this year it should go to Michael Gambon, who took over the mantle of Professor Dumbledore after Harris’s passing in 2002. No doubt many a Harry Potter fan saw the poetic justice in that.
The evening was yet another reason to suggest that British film is hot on the heels of America. As Elliot Grove, the founder of BIFA, said: “This year’s nominations demonstrate that British filmmakers are now an international force to be reckoned with.” I couldn’t agree more.
The Full List of Winners are as Follows:
BEST BRITISH INDEPENDENT FILM
Sponsored by Moët & Chandon
Sponsored by AllCity & Intermission
Peter Strickland – Berberian Sound Studio
THE DOUGLAS HICKOX AWARD [BEST DEBUT DIRECTOR]
Sponsored by 3 Mills Studios
Bart Layton – The Imposter
Sponsored by BBC Films
Alice Lowe, Steve Oram, Amy Jump – Sightseers
Sponsored by M.A.C
Andrea Riseborough (Colette McVeigh) – Shadow Dancer
Toby Jones (Gilderoy) – Berberian Sound Studio
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Olivia Colman (Queen Elizabeth) – Hyde Park on Hudson
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Sponsored by Sanderson & St Martins Lane
Rory Kinnear (Bob Oswald) – Broken
MOST PROMISING NEWCOMER
Sponsored by Studiocanal
James Floyd (Rashid) – My Brother the Devil
BEST ACHIEVEMENT IN PRODUCTION
Sponsored by Company3
Berberian Sound Studio
BEST TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT
Sponsored by LightBrigade Media
Joakim Sundström, Stevie Haywood AMPS IPS- Sound Design – Berberian Sound Studio
BEST BRITISH SHORT
Supported by the BFI
BEST INTERNATIONAL INDEPENDENT FILM
THE RAINDANCE AWARD
THE RICHARD HARRIS AWARD (for outstanding contribution by an actor to British Film)
Sir Michael Gambon
THE VARIETY AWARD
THE SPECIAL JURY PRIZE