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Three Billboards tops Baftas as Times Up campaign shares stage

AFP  |  London 

Crime drama "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" captured five British film awards today, including best film, topping an emotionally charged ceremony that featured fashion and rhetoric in support of the fight against sweeping Hollywood.

The movie, chronicling a grieving mothers campaign for justice, won for original screenplay and outstanding British film, while bagged best and best supporting prizes.

"The Shape of Water" -- the most heavily nominated film of the night with 12 nods -- came away with only three awards, including best director for Guillermo Del Toro, while "Darkest Hour" claimed two prizes, including for as best

With Hollywood still reeling from the fallout of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, the resulting anti-campaigns were reflected in the mood of the evening.

"Our film is a hopeful one in lots of ways but its also an angry one," Martin McDonagh, and director of "Three Billboards", said in his acceptance speech.

"And as weve seen this year, sometimes anger is the only way to get people to listen and to change, so were thrilled that has recognised this."


Star's arrived at predominantly dressed in black in solidarity with the #MeToo and "Times Up" campaigns, mirroring other recent American red carpets including last months

Angelina Jolie, and were among the stars who wore black.

British royals avoid making overtly political statements or gestures, so there was little surprise when the Duchess of chose to wear a dark green dress, by British Jenny Packham, as she accompanied husband William, of Bafta, to the ceremony.

Jane Lush, of Bafta, opened the evening soberly telling the star-studded audience it was important to acknowledge a "difficult" past year, and noted efforts to tackle inequality.

"Brave revelations have followed brave revelations of bullying and sexual harassment, and which to all our shame has been hidden in plain sight for decades," she said.

"This is a moment in history, it should be a watershed, a catalyst for lasting change."

Host Joanna Lumley, a British film and TV star, also praised the equality movement as a continuation of the work of the Suffragettes a century ago.

She hailed the "determination to eradicate the abuse of women the world over" as she took to the stage.

Meanwhile in an open letter published before the awards, almost 200 British and Irish stars backed a new fund to help women facing and abuse at work.

It echoes a similar initiative launched in Hollywood last month, and was kick-started with a USD 1.4 million donation from and activist

Choices at the Baftas, which fall between the Globes and the Oscars, often mirror those of the American heavyweights.

"The Shape of Water", a story of love between a mute cleaning woman and a mystery merman-like creature, led the pack just as it has across the Atlantic, where it has topped the list of nominations with 13 nods, including for best picture.

As well as for direction, collected the original music award -- his third win -- and the film also won best production design.

won best supporting for her role as the mother of controversial figure in biopic "I, Tonya".

"I loved doing this crazy part and finding her humanity, thats what I try and do in all roles," she said backstage.

Gary Oldman's turn as in "Darkest Hour" has so far won him a Golden Globe, a and the chance of an on March 4.

He paid tribute to the wartime British leader, saying: "In those dark, uncertain days in 1940, he held the line for honour, for integrity and freedom for his nation and the world, so I thank you, Sir "

Accepting her best accolade, McDormand, who chose not to wear black, quoted her on-screen character who has "a little trouble with compliance".

"But I want you to know I stand in full solidarity with my sisters tonight in black," she added.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, February 19 2018. 08:10 IST
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