Three Billboards wins big as stars speak out against harassment — BAFTA

Three Billboards wins big as stars speak out against harassment — BAFTA

Frances McDormand, who scooped the Best Actress award for her role in Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, defied the black-out by instead wearing a graphic floor-length gown decorated with pink and red lipstick print.

Director Martin McDonagh's bleak drama about a mother's quest for answers about her daughter's murder struck a nerve with British Academy of Film and Television Arts voters.

British writer-director Martin McDonagh, whose film Three Billboards took home five awards, said he felt the film's theme - an angry woman deciding to act - was appropriate to the mood of the time.

Other films in the race for the Best Film were Call Me By Your Name, Darkest Hour, Dunkirk and The Shape of Water.

Ahead of the awards ceremony, which saw Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri take the best film gong, more than 200 stars signed an open letter calling for the eradication of sexual harassment across all industries. For Best Leading Actor, this includes Mahatma Gandhi (Gandhi), Ray Charles (Ray), Idi Amin (The Last King of Scotland), Solomon Northup (12 Years a Slave), and Dith Pran (The Killing Fields).

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The British trophies, known as BAFTAs, are considered a key indicator of likely success at Hollywood's Oscars in two weeks' time. This last title has been big surprise in an edition of Bafta that has perched at same time to podium of best film next to category of Best British film.

The British ceremony also recognized the work of director Ridley Scott, known for films like Blade Runner, Alien, Thelma and Louise and Gladiator.

Scott Thomas said she is pleased by the conversation the entertainment industry is having about misconduct, but thinks a tougher task will be moving it from conversation to action.

Get Out's Kaluuya picked up the Rising Star award - the only award decided by a public vote, so audiences clearly love his performance, even if the judges overlooked him on this occasion.

However there were also those who avoided the blackout, with Best Actress victor Frances McDormand and Israeli model Hofit Golan among those in a different colour.

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Joanna Lumley launched the Baftas with a nod to the suffragettes, in an opening speech laced with her characteristic gags.

Gary Oldman, the favourite among bookies, won the Best Actor prize for playing British Prime Minister Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour. Accepting his Bafta, an emotional Oldman said: "This is made all the more special because I can share it with my family tonight".

Baby Driver received the BAFTA for Editing and Phantom Thread won for Costume Design.

It's the first time a Korean film won at the BAFTAs.

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