Dark drama ‘Joker’ leads BAFTA nominations with 11 nods


LONDON (Reuters) – “Joker”, an origins story of the villainous comic book character, led the nominations for the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) awards on Tuesday, earning 11 nods at Britain’s top movie honors.

FILE PHOTO: Joaquin Phoenix attends the premiere for the film “Joker” in Los Angeles, California, U.S., September 28, 2019. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni/File Photo

Netflix film “The Irishman”, a star-studded gangster drama directed by Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”, which won the best comedy/musical Golden Globe on Sunday, followed with 10 nominations each.

Also fresh from its triumph at the Golden Globes – where it picked up best drama and best director for Briton Sam Mendes – immersive World War One drama “1917” got nine nominations.

The four movies will compete against South Korean director Bong Joon-ho’s darkly comic “Parasite” for best film at the Feb. 2 awards in London as well as for best director.

“Joker” won the top Golden Lion award at the Venice Film Festival and a Golden Globe acting prize for Joaquin Phoenix, who has received critical acclaim for his transformation from vulnerable loner into confident villain in the movie.

Phoenix got a BAFTA leading actor nod and “Joker” was also nominated for adapted screenplay, original score, casting, cinematography, editing, sound, production design as well as makeup and hair.


For leading actor, Phoenix will compete against Oscar winner Leonardo DiCaprio for “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”, Adam Driver for Netflix divorce drama “Marriage Story”, Golden Globe winner Taron Egerton in Elton John musical biopic “Rocketman” and Jonathan Pryce in papal drama “The Two Popes”.

The nominees for leading actress featured Scarlett Johansson for “Marriage Story”, Saoirse Ronan for the latest adaptation of “Little Women”, Charlize Theron for “Bombshell”, a drama about sexual harassment allegations at Fox News. Other nominees in this category are Jessie Buckley for musical drama “Wild Rose” and Renee Zellweger for “Judy”, in which she plays actress Judy Garland, a role which won her a Golden Globe.

Johansson was also nominated as supporting actress for “Jojo Rabbit”, a comic satire set during World War Two which in total got six nominations.

She faces competition from her “Marriage Story” co-star Laura Dern, Florence Pugh for “Little Women” and a twice-nominated Margot Robbie for “Bombshell” and “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”.

“The Irishman” secured supporting actor nods for Al Pacino and Joe Pesci. Fellow supporting actor nominees included Tom Hanks for “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”, Anthony Hopkins for “The Two Popes” and Brad Pitt for “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”.

“Parasite”, which won the top Palme d’Or prize at the Cannes Film Festival and best foreign film at the Golden Globes, was also nominated for film not in the English language. Completing that list are “The Farewell”, “For Sama”, “Pain and Glory” and “Portrait of a Lady on Fire”.

“Little Women”, “Marriage Story” and “The Two Popes” got five nominations each in total.

Reporting by Marie-Louise Gumuchian; Editing by Andrew Cawthorne and Emelia Sithole-Matarise

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