This year the BAFTA Film Awards are pulling out all the stops, with the star-studded ceremony set to be one of the most well attended by nominees on-record.
Honouring the best work in film, both in the UK and internationally, A-list stars from around the globe will compete to take home a distinctive golden-mask statuette. But how does it feel to get a nod?
From “too insane” to “creative intimidation” and “deep gratification”, four BAFTA nominees tell Sky News about the rollercoaster ride to being nominated on the British film industry’s biggest night.
The Oscar-winning writer-director behind previous hits including Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri and In Bruges, already has a shelf full of BAFTAs at home – four to be precise.
Now his Irish tragicomedy Banshees Of Inisherin – which tells the tale of male friendship gone sour – may mean he has to put up a second shelf, with the movie up for a score of BAFTAs.
The stars of the film – Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, Barry Keoghan and Kerry Condon are all up for acting awards on the night too.
Embodying the phrase ‘Hope for the best and be prepared for the worst’, McDonagh told Sky News: “I’m bad at public speaking, so I kind of I’m half happy when we lose so I don’t have to go up there.
“But no, it’s better to be in the mix than not to be in the mix. So, it’s weirdly both exciting and scary at the same time.”
She first gained international attention as a Bond girl in Tomorrow Never Dies, and got her first BAFTA nomination for her starring role in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon – but it’s Everything Everywhere All At Once that could nab Michelle Yeoh her first BAFTA.
The Malaysian actress plays Evelyn Wang, a middle-aged laundrette owner transported into ever more baffling parallel worlds, in the multiverse madness that is Everything Everywhere. Like Banshees it’s scored ten nods.
This touching indie sci-fi has been a word-of-mouth and critically acclaimed hit, and is directed by Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert – collectively known as the Daniels (they are up for a best director BAFTA too).
An unexpected lead contender in this year’s awards season, and far from normal awards-season fare, perhaps one of the movie’s lead characters – Waymond Wang as Alpha Waymond – puts it best when he tells Evelyn: “Every rejection, every disappointment has led you to this moment. Don’t let anything distract you from it.”
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Ke Huy Quan, who plays Waymond, is also up for a BAFTA, as is co-star Jamie Lee Curtis.
Yeoh told Sky News: “Normally people would go like, this is too insane. But our world is chaotic and insane and unpredictable, and we have to learn to embrace whatever comes our way.”
Despite leaning into it, she also revealed she is really just like the rest of us, admitting: “I don’t like the pressure. This is my first time [being nominated at lots of big awards].
“So, I don’t understand how intense it is. Just getting the nominations was terrifying… Because it felt like a big part of the world was wanting it so bad.”
One of Britain’s most popular actors, with credits including Love Actually and Harry Potter, Bill Nighy already has two BAFTAs to his name – and now he’s up for another one.
The 73-year-old star plays buttoned-up civil servant Mr Williams, who works joylessly in the county public works department, until a terminal diagnosis inspires him to make a change.
Living is The Kazuo Ishiguro-scripted remake of Akira Kurosawa’s 1952 film Ikiru – which quite literally reminds us to make the most of life – is up for three BAFTAs in total.
Nighy told Sky News: “People really respond to the movie and they’re inspired by it, which is what it was designed to do. So, it’s deeply, deeply gratifying.”
Asked if he was enjoying his awards buzz, he took a melancholy note from the character that earned him the nod, saying: “As much as I’m able to enjoy anything, I have a negative tendency which I have to really kind of combat.
“But no, seriously, yeah, it’s absolutely marvellous.”
One of the biggest stars of the 1990s, Canadian-American actor Brendan Fraser’s return to Hollywood after nearly 20 years out of the limelight has been nothing short of spectacular.
The 53-year-old’s comeback even inspired its own definition – the “Bren-aissance”.
His warmly received re-entry into showbiz has earned him nods aplenty, including a BAFTA nomination for best lead actor.
Directed by Black Swan filmmaker Darren Aronofsky, The Whale tells the story of an extremely obese man trying to reconnect with his daughter. The movie has four BAFTA nominations in total.
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Fraser told Sky News: “Of the award stuff. It’s new to me, but we’re all frothy and happy and giddy and happy for this with fingers crossed and best fondest hopes for success.
“But who knows what the result is going to be. But I’m confident, I think that we’ve got a shot at making it to the finish line.”
As for whether he thought the film would be a success when he first took it on, he said: “I didn’t have any doubts… If anything, I had enthusiasm and some hope and some humility and a little bit of creative intimidation.”
The BAFTA Film Awards take place on Sunday 19 February at the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall in London.
The ceremony will be broadcast from 7pm on BBC One and iPlayer. Sky News will be covering live from the red carpet beforehand and throughout the ceremony before the programme itself begins.