BAFTA Awards 2016: Predictions

The highlight of the British film calendar is almost upon us. Tomorrow night, the glitz and glamour of Hollywood will sweep Covent Garden’s Royal Opera House as it plays host to the 69th British Academy Film Awards.

Though the BAFTAs are  widely considered as the precursor to the Oscars, the British Academy’s decisions are markedly more difficult to predict than those of their American counterparts. Whereas more often than not grit and spectacle are favoured across the pond, here there tends to be a stronger celebration of sentimentality and, of course, Britishness.

That said, the difficulty of getting predictions right in no way diminishes the fun involved in actually making them. Here are the thoughts of Pick of the Flicks on how it will all go down tomorrow night.

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BEST FILM

Will win: Spotlight
Should win: Carol

This year, the Best Film category is one of the hardest to call, the closest the competition has been for a number of years. Carol may be the strongest film of the five that have been nominated, but Spotlight and even The Revenant have more momentum behind them. Spotlight will probably win out, but the sheer number of nominations Carol has received (9, equalled only by Bridge of Spies) means that it might just have the potential to take home the biggest prize of the night.

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BEST ACTOR

Will win: Leonardo DiCaprio (The Revenant)
Should win: Leonardo DiCaprio (The Revenant)

Though The Revenant hardly sees DiCaprio at his best, there is no way any of his fellow nominees will come close to causing an upset. There is no competition here. It is just a shame that Room’s brilliant Jacob Tremblay did not receive the nomination he so thoroughly deserves.

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BEST ACTRESS

Will win: Brie Larson (Room)
Should win: Alicia Vikander (The Danish Girl)

If performance alone decided this, Alicia Vikander’s stunning turn in The Danish Girl would see her walk out of the Royal Opera House a winner. However, a strong performance from Brie Larson in Room, combined with the Oscar buzz surrounding her, likely means this will be Larson’s night. Saoirse Ronan stands a decent chance in this category, too, but the real race is between Vikander and Larson.

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BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Will win: Mark Rylance (Bridge of Spies)
Should win: Idris Elba (Beasts of No Nation)

BAFTA will surely lap up the chance to celebrate the man who is widely considered to be one of Britain’s finest stage actors. As such, Mark Rylance’s subtle, taciturn performance as Rudolf Abel in Bridge of Spies will be enough for a win here, even though Idris Elba’s turn as the brutish Commandant in Beasts of No Nation is stronger.

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BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Will win: Rooney Mara (Carol)
Should win: Rooney Mara (Carol)

Rooney Mara’s wonderful performance in Carol should make her the worthy winner of this particular award. But never underestimate the Brit Factor at the BAFTAs; Kate Winslet could well pip her at the post for her brilliant portrayal of Joanna Hoffman in Steve Jobs. Even Julie Walters could get a look in here for her small role as a strict housekeeper in Brooklyn, though this is unlikely.

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OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM

Will win: Brooklyn
Should win: Brooklyn

45 Years stands a very strong chance in this category. But Brooklyn is the more heartwarming of the two tales, and has certainly reached a wider audience, and that hopefully will be enough to score it a victory.

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BEST DIRECTOR

Will win: Alejandro  González Iñárritu (The Revenant)
Should win: Todd Haynes (Carol)

The spectacle of The Revenant may be enough to secure a win for Iñárritu, but Haynes’s careful, considered, and frankly brilliant direction of Carol makes him more deserving. However, Ridley Scott has real potential to cause an upset here. A popular Brit who has yet to win in this category, BAFTA may well decide that this could be his year.

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BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Will win: Spotlight
Should win: Inside Out

The serious subject matter of Spotlight means that its tightly-plotted script is probably the favourite. The sheer originality of Inside Out (and even Ex Machina) would make it a more worthy winner, but it is unlikely that an animated film will win in this particular category.

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BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

Will win: Carol
Should win: Steve Jobs

Phyllis Nagy’s wonderfully intricate adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s The Price of Salt has rightfully won her much praise in recent months, and will likely bag her a golden mask tomorrow night. However, Aaron Sorkin’s sharp, witty and cutting script for Steve Jobs deserves just as much recognition. Brooklyn has the potential to do well here, too, which makes for an interesting race in this category.

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BEST ANIMATED FILM

Will win: Inside Out
Should win: Inside Out

The makers of Minions and Shaun the Sheep: The Movie need not even turn up. This award belonged to Inside Out from the get-go.

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BEST ORIGINAL MUSIC

Will win: Ennio Morricone (The Hateful Eight)
Should win: Ennio Morricone (The Hateful Eight)

The brilliant, haunting work of Ennio Morricone in Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight is the shoo-in. John Williams poses no real threat for his underwhelming work in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, nor do any of the other nominees.

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BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

Will win: Carol
Should win: Carol

BAFTA are likely to recognise the gorgeous cinematography of Carol, but it faces tough competition from The Revenant and Bridge of Spies.

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BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

Will win: Mad Max: Fury Road
Should win: Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian has the potential to do well here, but the creativity and originality that spawned the mad world of Mad Max will likely win out.

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BEST EDITING

Will win: The Revenant
Should win: Mad Max: Fury Road

A tough race to call. At the front of the pack are The Revenant and Mad Max: Fury Road, two films which have been lauded for their technical brilliance. But in the absence of winning any big awards, this could be one consolation prize that Bridge of Spies picks up.

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BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Will win: Cinderella
Should win: Cinderella

It is almost a dead cert that Sandy Powell will win this category. Though she stands a decent chance for winning for her work in Carol, the glamour of her costumes for Cinderella makes it an even stronger contender.

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BEST MAKE-UP AND HAIR

Will win: Mad Max: Fury Road
Should win: Mad Max: Fury Road

This is very much Mad Max’s to lose. And it is unlikely to.

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BEST SOUND

Will win: Mad Max: Fury Road
Should win: The Revenant

Once again, this is a close race between the two technically brilliant films of the year, The Revenant and Mad Max: Fury Road. There is not much between them.

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BEST SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS

Will win: Mad Max: Fury Road
Should win: Mad Max: Fury Road

The subtle but brilliant visual effects in Ex Machina are an intrinsic part of the film, but this is a category where spectacle wins out. The Martian and even Star Wars: The Force Awakens could do well here, but this is another gong which surely belongs to Mad Max.

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OUTSTANDING DEBUT BY A BRITISH WRITER, DIRECTOR OR PRODUCER

Will win: Alex Garland (Ex Machina)
Should win: Alex Garland (Ex Machina)

Alex Garland’s widely-praised, highly-lauded is the only likely winner in this category.

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BEST DOCUMENTARY

Will win: Amy
Should win: Amy

Another category with very little competition. The tragic story of Amy Winehouse will tug on BAFTA’s heartstrings and surely bag the award.

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EE RISING STAR

Will win: John Boyega
Should win: John Boyega

Once more, this category boasts an impressive set of nominees. Bel Powley is the real underdog here, whilst Brie Larson and Dakota Johnson are also unlikely to win, despite their presence on the grand stage of Hollywood. Really, this is a showdown between two Brits, Taron Egerton and John Boyega. Egerton arguably has more strings to his bow, but the sheer likeability of Boyega, coupled with the Star Wars Effect, makes him the strong favourite.

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The BAFTAs will be broadcast at 9pm on BBC One on Sunday 14th February 2016.

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