Colman, Bale lead British talent charge in Oscar race

January 22, 2019

LONDON (Reuters) – Actors Olivia Colman and Christian Bale lead the British charge in the race for this year’s Oscars, with a horde of UK talent nominated on Tuesday for their work in front of and behind the camera in the film industry’s top honors.

British stars will contend for prizes in all four acting categories at the glitzy Feb. 24 awards, which in the past have seen UK films like “The King’s Speech” triumph.

Colman was nominated for her portrayal of a frail and tempestuous Queen Anne in 18th century Britain in “The Favourite” while Bale was recognized for political comedy “Vice”, in which he plays former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney.

Both have already won Golden Globes for their respective roles and have been nominated at the Screen Actors Guild Awards and Britain’s BAFTAs.

Colman’s co-star Rachel Weisz is in the running for Actress in a Supporting Role while Richard E. Grant was nominated as Actor in a Supporting Role for “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”.

“British talent always does well at the Oscars, there’s no question about it,” Screen International Editor Matt Mueller told Reuters.

“It’s always a good strong showing …’The Favourite’ obviously is a huge success story.”

The dark comedy, an Irish, British and U.S. co-production, secured 10 nominations, making it and Mexican black-and-white film “Roma” the most-nominated movies at this year’s Oscars.

“Bohemian Rhapsody”, the British-American musical about rock band Queen, also made the cut.

British costume designer Sandy Powell bagged two nominations for her creations in “The Favourite” and Disney’s “Mary Poppins Returns”.

Among her fellow Costume Design contenders is Briton Alexandra Byrne for historical drama “Mary Queen of Scots”, a film which also saw British make-up artist Jenny Shircore nominated alongside colleagues.

“The Favourite” was also recognized for Original Screenplay, with Deborah Davis cited alongside Australian Tony McNamara.

British film “Black Sheep” was included in the Documentary Short category.

On the technical side, Briton Nathan Crowley was nominated for Production Design on space race drama “First Man”.

“Shallow” from “A Star Is Born”, a tune co-written by British music producer Mark Ronson, is in the running for Original Song.

“Congratulations to all the Oscar nominees,” the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) tweeted.

“Once again there’s a strong field of British talent up for awards, which is GREAT!”


(Reporting By Marie-Louise Gumuchian; Additional reporting by Holta Celmeta; Editing by Catherine Evans)