All Quiet On The Western Front leads BAFTA nominations

With 14 nominations, Netflix’s German drama All Quiet On The Western Front is leading the field at this year’s BAFTA Film Awards – the critically-acclaimed World War One epic presented as a new screen adaptation of the 1928 novel by Erich Maria Remarque.

Elsewhere, The Banshees of Inisherin and Everything Everywhere All At Once get 10 nominations each, with Elvis following closely behind with nine.

Nominees in the acting categories this year include Cate Blanchett, Emma Thompson, Colin Farrell, Michelle Yeoh, Eddie Redmayne and Viola Davis.

Several box office smashes have also been recognised in this year’s shortlist, including Top Gun: Maverick and Avatar: The Way of Water.

However, all of the nominations scored by both films are for technical prizes. In total, there are 45 films nominated this year across all categories.

There are some notable absences – such as actress Olivia Colman and director Steven Spielberg – neither of whom made the BAFTA longlist.

But some omissions are thought to be at least partly due to the new methods the British Academy uses to determine nominees.

The BAFTA Film Awards 2023 will take place on Feb 19 at the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall in London with Richard E Grant as host.

All Quiet On The Western Front

The German drama is a brutally violent but widely praised adaptation of the novel of the same name. It was previously adapted for the screen in 1930 and 1979.

Meanwhile, the last non-English language film to win the BAFTA for best film was Alfonso Cuaron’s Roma in 2019.

Critics have lavished praise on the latest version, which is directed by Edward Berger and stars Austrian actor Felix Kammerer.

The film looks at World War One from the German perspective, through the eyes of an idealistic young soldier named Paul Baumer (Kammerer) who is confronted with the increasingly barbaric realities of war.

In the top BAFTA best film category, it faces competition from Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis Presley biopic, and Todd Field’s psychological drama Tar, which follows a disgraced orchestra conductor.

The other nominees include Martin McDonagh’s comedy The Banshees of Inisherin, which is about two feuding friends in 1920s Ireland. The film did well at the recent Golden Globes.

On the other hand, the sci-fi adventure Everything Everywhere All At Once, which follows a woman who hops through the multiverse exploring different versions of herself, is also in contention.

Cate Blanchett

Cate Blanchett is nominated for leading actress for her performance in Tar – in which she plays a renowned orchestra conductor whose career starts to unravel when she is accused of abuse.

The actress has previously been nominated for seven BAFTA Film Awards, winning three times for Blue Jasmine, The Aviator and Elizabeth.

Widely seen as one of the frontrunners for the best actress Oscar, Blanchett faces competition in the category at the BAFTAS from fellow awards favourite Michelle Yeoh (for Everything Everywhere All At Once).

The other nominees are Viola Davis (for The Woman King), Danielle Deadwyler (Till), Ana De Armas (Blonde), and Emma Thompson (Good Luck to You, Leo Grande).

Leading actor

The leading actor category, meanwhile, sees recognition for all three of the Oscar frontrunners – Austin Butler (for Elvis), Brendan Fraser (The Whale) and Colin Farrell (The Banshees of Inisherin).

The other nominees in the category are Bill Nighy (for Living), Daryl McCormack (Good Luck to You, Leo Grande) and Paul Mescal (Aftersun).

Across all the acting categories, 40 persons of the nominees this year are people belonging to ethnic minorities – 10 of the 24 available slots.

Who missed out?

There are some notable absences in this year’s BAFTA list – Hollywood giants Steven Spielberg (The Fabelmans) and James Cameron (Avatar: The Way of Water) were not even longlisted for best director.

However, such absences are thought to be partly due to the relatively new methods BAFTA use to compile nominations. Since 2021’s ceremony, juries have been enlisted to determine a certain number of nominees in most categories, as part of a drive to ensure diversity.

The director longlist was required to have an even split of male and female nominees. Eight of each were longlisted earlier this month, but more than twice the number of men had been submitted as women.

However, Spielberg is nominated in the best original screenplay category – marking the only nomination for The Fabelmans, a strong Oscars contender.

In the acting categories, another omission from the longlists was Olivia Colman, usually an awards season favourite. However, her Empire of Light co-star, Michael Ward, is nominated for best supporting actor.

Women Talking, which follows abused women from an isolated Mennonite colony, and the popular Knives Out sequel Glass Onion, have been shut out entirely despite receiving four longlist nominations each.

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