The winners of the 2021 EE British Academy Film Awards were revealed across two ceremonies this weekend, celebrating the year’s top achievements in film. Saturday’s Opening Night was hosted by Clara Amfo from the Royal Albert Hall, featuring guests Rhianna Dhillon and Joanna Scanlon presenting eight awards, as well as an in-depth look at the filmmaking process. Sunday’s event at the Hall was hosted by Edith Bowman and Demort O’Leary, with nominees attending virtually as the remaining honors were bestowed.
Disney-Pixar’s Soul added two more trophies to its awards season shelf, winning both the Animated Film and Original Score BAFTAs. Pete Docter and Kemp Power’s beautifully animated meditation on the meaning of life is striking a chord with voters this awards season, having picked up top honors at the Golden Globes, PGA, Critics Choice Super, VES and AFI Awards. Atticus Ross — and his least shy child — accepted the Original Score win on behalf of himself and collaborators Trent Reznor and Jon Batiste (watch here). The award for Animated Film was accepted virtually by producer Dana Murray, who began her speech noting, “Soul is a film about finding real priorities in our lives, and there’s nothing like a worldwide pandemic to help you realize what is truly important.”
The British Short Animation prize went to Mole Hill’s The Owl and the Pussycat, an innovative “waximation” piece celebrating the 150th anniversary of Edward Lear’s beloved nonsense poem, in which the unlikely animal duo set sail with few precious possessions and lose everything — except each other. Cheshire’s Consortium of Gentlemen is the production and sales co. for the four-minute film. Watch the award presentation here.
Christopher Nolan’s Tenet was awarded the Special Visual Effects Prize, accepted via video from a blustery beach by VFX supervisor Andrew Jackson, holding a stand-in BAFTA stone (which will surely be replaced in post). Watch it here.
The Special Award for Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema was given to filmmaker Noel Clarke, while the British Academy’s highest honor, the Fellowship, was introduced by Hugh Grant and presented to director Ang Lee.
The Owl and the Pussycat
Select category winners and nominees below; find the full list here.
Onward | Dan Scanlon, Kori Rae
Wolfwalkers | Tomm Moore, Ross Stewart, Paul Young
WINNER: Soul | Pete Docter, Dana Murray
British Short Animation
The Fire Next Time | Renaldho Pelle, Yanling Wang, Kerry Jade Kolbe
The Song of a Lost Boy | Daniel Quirke, Jamie MacDonald, Brid Arnstein
WINNER: The Owl and the Pussycat | Mole Hill, Laura Duncalf
Special Visual Effects
Greyhound | Pete Bebb, Nathan McGuinness, Sebastian von Overheidt
The Midnight Sky | Matt Kasmir, Chris Lawrence, David Watkins
Mulan | Sean Faden, Steve Ingram, Anders Langlands, Seth Maury
The One and Only Ivan | Santiago Colomo Martinez, Nick Davis, Greg Fisher
WINNER: Tenet | Scott Fisher, Andrew Jackson, Andrew Lockley
Mank | Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross
Minari | Emile Mosseri
News of the World | James Newton Howard
Promising Young Woman | Anthony Willis
WINNER: Soul | Jon Batiste, Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross