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British Academy Film Awards

'Slumdog' wins 7 BAFTA awards, including best film

'The Curious Case of Benjamin Button' garners 3 prizes; Mickey Rourke and Kate Winslet win in lead categories.

February 09, 2009|Susan King

"Slumdog Millionaire" dominated the British Academy Film Awards on Sunday evening, taking home the prize in seven categories, including best film.

"Slumdog," which revolves around an impoverished teenager who ends up competing on the Indian version of the TV game show "Who Wants to be a Millionaire," also won director honors for Danny Boyle, as well as adapted screenplay for Simon Beaufoy. The drama also scored in the music, cinematography, editing and sound categories.

The British Academy Film Awards, presented by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA), is considered England's version of the Academy Awards.

"Slumdog" seems to be an unstoppable force this movie award season -- it swept the Golden Globes and recently won a top Screen Actors Guild Award as well as the Producers Guild of America prize.

Boyle also won the Directors Guild of America Award, and Beaufoy won the Writers Guild of America Award for adapted screenplay Saturday evening. "Slumdog" is nominated for 10 Academy Awards and is considered the odds-on favorite to win the best film Oscar.

"The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" earned three BAFTA awards: for production design, hair and makeup, and special visual effects.

Kate Winslet was named outstanding actress for "The Reader" during Sunday's ceremony at London's Royal Opera House. Winslet, who is nominated for a lead actress Oscar for her performance as a former Nazi prison guard, previously won in the Golden Globe and SAG Award supporting actress categories for "The Reader."

Mickey Rourke, who won the Golden Globe and is nominated for an Oscar, won the BAFTA for outstanding actor as an aging athlete in "The Wrestler."

The late Heath Ledger, who also won Globe and SAG honors, earned a BAFTA for supporting actor as the Joker in "The Dark Knight." And Oscar-nominee Penelope Cruz received the supporting actress award for her performance as an obsessively jealous ex-wife in "Vicky Cristina Barcelona."

Other winners on Sunday:

* Original screenplay: Martin McDonagh, "In Bruges."

* Best British film: "Man on Wire"

* The Carl Foreman Award for special achievement by a British director, writer or producer in their first feature film: Steve McQueen, director and writer of "Hunger"

* Film not in the English language: "I've Loved You So Long"

* Animated film: "Wall-E"

* Outstanding British contribution to cinema: Pinewood Studios/Shepperton Studios

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susan.king@latimes.com

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