2018 British Independent Film Awards: ‘The Favourite’ has the most nominations

October 31, 2018

The Favourite
Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone in “The Favourite” (Photo by Atsushi Nishijima)

The following is a press release from the British Independent Film Awards:

“The Favourite” leads the list of nominations for the 2018 British Independent Film Awards (BIFAs) announced this morning by British actors Ellie Bamber and Arinzé Kene at the Everyman Cinema, King’s Cross. Yorgos Lanthimos’s black comedy about the 18th century court of Queen Anne is recognized for Best British Independent FilmBest Director sponsored by Broadsword Event House and Best Screenplay sponsored by BBC Films. Olivia Colman is nominated for Best Actress sponsored by MAC, with her co-stars in the female-led ensemble, Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz, competing in the Best Supporting Actress category, Weisz also receives a Best Actress nomination for Sapphic drama “Disobedience.” “The Favourite” also sweeps the technical categories, newly introduced for the 2017 awards, with nominations for seven of the nine awards, including Best Production DesignBest Cinematography supported by Blackmagic DesignBest Make-up & Hair Design and Best Costume Design.

The Best British Independent Film nominees are “American Animals” (11 nominations), “Beast” (10 nominations), “Disobedience” (5 nominations), “The Favourite” (13 nominations) and “You Were Never Really Here” (8 nominations). The nominations list demonstrates a record year for female representation, with over 40% of the individual nominations recognizing women in the industry across directing, writing, producing, performance and craft. Female nominees make up over 50% of the talent nominated for Best British Independent Film and dominate both Most Promising Newcomer and Breakthrough Producer supported by Creativity Media, with four out of five nominations for each award. Over 140 British films were submitted for consideration and 37 different British feature films have been nominated across the BIFA categories.

The broad recognition for “American Animals” and “You Were Never Really Here” marks the return of previous award winners, writer-directors Lynne Ramsay and Bart Layton. Layton won Best Debut Director for his documentary “The Imposter” in 2012 and his true-crime heist drama “American Animals” secures him nominations for Best Director and for both Best Screenplay and Debut Screenwriter. The film sees Evan Peters and Barry Keoghan compete in the Best Supporting Actor category, marking their first BIFA nominations. Ramsay continues her long association with BIFA, with her third nomination for Best Screenplay and her second for Best Director, following past recognition for “Ratcatcher,” “Morvern Callar” and “We Need To Talk About Kevin.” Joaquin Phoenix secures his second BIFA Best Actor nomination for his role as a tortured hitman in the psychological noir thriller, with Jonny Greenwood and Tom Townend being recognized for Best Music sponsored by Universal Music Publishing Group and Best Cinematography respectively.

Following a breakout year for British directorial debuts at the 2017 awards, this year’s nominations list continues the trend with acclaim for Michael Pearces romantic thriller “Beast” and Daniel Kokotajlo’s “Apostasy,” a sensitive drama set within the Jehovah’s Witness community. In addition to its Best British Independent Film nomination, “Beast” receives nods for Pearce in all directing and screenwriting categories: Best DirectorBest ScreenplayDebut Screenwriter and The Douglas Hickox Award for Best Debut Director sponsored by Kodak & Pinewood. Lead Jessie Buckley receives nominations for both Best Actress and Most Promising Newcomer, alongside “Apostasy’s” Molly Wright who also receives nods in both categories. Kokotajlo features alongside Pearce with nominations for Best Debut Director and Debut Screenwriter.

Joe Cole (“A Prayer Before Dawn”)Rupert Everett (“The Happy Prince”) and Charlie Plummer (“Lean on Pete”) all feature in the Best Actor category as first time BIFA nominees, alongside Steve Coogan (“Stan & Ollie”) and Joaquin PhoenixGemma Arterton (“The Escape”) and Maxine Peake (“Funny Cow”) round out the Best Actress category, with Peake making her debut on the list.

The Richard Harris Award and The Variety Award are to be announced in November. The Richard Harris Award, introduced in 2002 in honor of Richard Harris, recognizes outstanding contribution to British Film by an actor. Previous winners have been Daniel Day Lewis, Julie Walters, John Hurt, Emma Thompson and Vanessa Redgrave in 2017. The Variety Award recognizes a director, actor, writer or producer who has made a global impact and helped focus the international spotlight on the UK. Past winners include Kate Winslet, Richard Curtis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Sir Michael Caine and Dame Helen Mirren.

Winners will be announced at the British Independent Film Award Ceremony on Sunday 2 December at Old Billingsgate.

UPDATE: Judi Dench will receive the 2018 Richard Harris Award. Felicity Jones will receive the 2018 Variety Award.

Here is the complete list of nominations:

Best British Independent Film
“American Animals” (Producers: Bart Layton, Katherine Butler, Dimitri Doganis, Derrin Schlesinger, Mary Jane Skalski

“Beast (Producers: Michael Pearce, Kristian Brodie, Lauren Dark, Ivana MacKinnon)

“Disobedience” (Producers: Sebastián Lelio, Rebecca Lenkiewicz, Ed Guiney, Frida Torresblanco, Rachel Weisz)

“The Favourite” (Producers: Yorgos Lanthimos, Deborah Davis, Tony McNamara, Ceci Dempsey, Ed Guiney, Lee Magiday)

“You Were Never Really Here” (Producers: Lynne Ramsay, Pascal Caucheteux, Rosa Attab, James Wilson, Rebecca O’Brien)

Best Director 
Andrew Haigh,  “Lean on Pete”
Yorgos Lanthmos, “The Favourite”
Bart Layton, “American Animals”
Michael Pearce, “Beast”
Lynne Ramsay, “You Were Never Really Here”

Best Screenplay
Deborah Davis, Tony McNamara, “The Favourite”
Bart Layton, “American Animals”
Sebastian Lelio, Rebecca Lenkiewicz, “Disobedience”
Michael Pearce, “Beast”
Lynne Ramsay, “You Were Never Really Here”

Best Actress
Gemma Arterton, “The Escape”
Jessie Buckley, “Beast”
Olivia Colman, “The Favourite”
Maxine Peake, “Funny Cow”
Rachel Weisz, “Disobedience”

Best Supporting Actress
Nina Arianda, “Stan & Ollie”
Rachel McAdams, “Disobedience”
Emma Stone, “The Favourite”
Rachel Weisz, “The Favourite”
Molly Wright, “Apostasy”

Best Actor
Joe Cole, “A Prayer Before Dawn”
Steve Coogan, “Stan & Ollie”
Rupert Everett, “The Happy Prince”
Joaquin Phoenix, “You Were Never Really Here”
Charlie Plummer, “Lean on Pete”

Best Supporting Actor
Steve Buscemi, “Lean on Pete”
Barry Keoghan, “American Animals”
Alessandro Nivola, “Disobedience”
Van Peters, “American Animals”
Dominic West, “Colette”

Most Promising Newcomer
Jessie Buckley, “Beast”
Michaela Coel, “Been So Long”
Liv Hill, “Jellyfish”
Marcus Rutherford, “Obey”
Molly Wright, “Apostasy”

The Douglas Hickox Award (Best Debut Director)
Richard Billingham, “Ray & Liz”
Daniel Kokotajlo, “Apostasy”
Matt Palmer, “Calibre”
Michael Pearce, “Beast”
Leanne Welham, “Pili”

Debut Screenwriter
Karen Gillan, “The Party’s Just Beginning”
Daniel Kokotajlo, “Apostasy”
Bart Layton, “American Animals”
Matt Palmer, “Calibre”
Michael Pearce, “Beast”

Breakthrough Producer
Kristian Brodie, “Beast”
Jacqui Davies, “Ray & Liz”
Anna Griffin, “Calibre”
Marcie MacLellan, “Apostasy”
Faye Ward, “Stan & Ollie”

The Discovery Award
“The Dig” (Directors: Andy Tohill, Ryan Tohill. Producers: Stuart Drennan, Brian J. Falconer. Writer: Stuart Drennan.)

“Irene’s Ghost” (Director: Iain Cunningham. Writers: Iain Cunningham, David Arthur. Producer: Rebecca Mark-Lawson. Director of Animation: Ellie Land.)

“A Moment in the Reeds” (Director/writer/producer: Mikko Makela. Producer: James Watson.)

“Super November” (Director/producer: Douglas King. Writer: Josie Long.)

“Voyageuse” (Director/writer/producer: May Miles Thomas)

Best Documentary
“Being Frank: The Chris Sievey Story” (Director/producer: Steve Sullivan)

“Evelyn” (Director: Orlando von Einsiedel. Producer: Joanna Natasegara.)

“Island” (Director: Steven Eastwood. Producer: Elhum Shakerifar.)

“Nae Pasaran” (Director/producer: Felipe Bustos Sierra)

“Under the Wire” (Director: Christopher Martin. Producer: Tom Brisley.)

Best British Short Film 
“The Big Day”

“Bitter Sea”

“The Field”


“To Know Him”

Best International Independent Film 
“Capernum” (Director/writer: Nadine Labaki. Writers: Jihad Hojeily, Michelle Keserwani, Producers: Khaled Mouzanar, Michel Merkt.)

“Cold War” (Director/writer: Pawel Pawlikowski. Writer: Janusz Glowacki. Producers: Ewa Puszczynska, Tanya Seghatchian)

“The Rider” (Director/writer/producer: Chloé Zhao. Producers: Mollye Asher, Sacha Ben Harroche, Bert Hamelinck.)

“Roma,” (Director/writer/producer: Alfonso Cuarón. Producers: Nicolás Celis, Gabriela Rodriguez.)

“Shoplifters” (Director/writer/producer: Hirokazu Koreeda)

Best Casting
Dixie Chassay, “The Favourite”
Julie Harkin, “Beast”
Avy Kaufman, “American Animals”
Andy Pryor, “Stan & Ollie”
Michelle Smith, “Apostasy”

Best Cinematography
Ole Bratt Birkeland, “American Animals”
Magnus Nordenhof Jønck, “Lean on Pete”
Robbie Ryan, “The Favourite”
Tom Townend, “You Were Never Really Here”
David Ungaro, “A Prayer Before Dawn”

Best Costume Design
Jacqueline Durran, “Peterloo”
Aandrea Flesch, “Colette”
Sandy Powell, “The Favourite”
Guy Sperenza, “Stan & Ollie”
Alyssa Tull, “An Evening With Beverly Luff Lin”

Best Editing
Joe Bini, “You Were Never Really Here”
Marc Boucrot, “A Prayer Before Dawn”
Nick Fenton, Julian Hart, Chris Gill, “American Animals”
Yorgos Mavropsaridis, “The Favourite”
Ben Wheatley, “Happy New Year, Colin Burstead”

Best Effects
Howard Jones, “Early Man”
Matthew Stranger, Mark Wellband, “Dead in a Week (Or Your Money Back)”
George Zwier, Paul Driver, “Peterloo”

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