Pride wins big at British Independent Film Awards

pride BIFA winner

Pride, based on the inspiring true story of the alliance between lesbian and gay activists, and Welsh miners during the strikes in 1984, has won Best Film at last night’s British Independent Film Awards, beating out stiff competition from the likes of Mr Turner and The Imitation Game.  The awards, which are now in their 17th year, were hosted by The Inbetweeners star Simon Bird.  Pride was the big winner of the night, with the film also taking away two other awards, with Imelda Staunton being awarded Best Supporting Actress, and Andrew Scott winning Best Supporting Actor.

Despite receiving the most nominations at nine, thriller ‘71 only went away with one award for as Yann Demange was named Best Director.  Gugu Mbatha-Raw was awarded Best Actress for her first major film role in Belle, a  film based on the true story of a mixed-race aristocrat in the 1780s.

Winning the Best Actor award was the brilliant Brendan Gleeson for his portrayal as a priest under pressure in dark-comedy Calvary, beating front-runners Timothy Spall in Mr Turner and Benedict Cumberbatch in The Imitation Game.  

Cumberbatch didn’t go away empty-handed though, as he won the Variety award – an award that recognises an actor, director, writer or producer who has helped to shine the international spotlight on the UK.

Boyhood continued its critical success with the jury awarding it Best International Film.  This follows plaudits from both the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, and the New York Film Critics Circle, with the film winning the Best Picture at both.  The multitude of awards Boyhood has gathered so far is causing speculation as to whether Richard Linklater’s film, which was filmed over 12 years, will be the front-runner for Best Picture come Academy Award time.

Finally, the wonderful Emma Thompson took away the Richard Harris Award for outstanding contribution by an actor to British film.

The full list of winners are below:

BEST BRITISH INDEPENDENT FILM – Pride

BEST DIRECTOR – Yann Demange –  ’71

THE DOUGLAS HICKOX AWARD [BEST DEBUT DIRECTOR] – Iain Forsyth, Jane Pollard –  20,000 Days on Earth

BEST SCREENPLAY – Jon Ronson, Peter Straughan –  Frank

BEST ACTRESS – Gugu Mbatha-Raw –  Belle

BEST ACTOR – Brendan Gleeson – Calvary

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS – Imelda Staunton –  Pride

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR – Andrew Scott – Pride

MOST PROMISING NEWCOMER – Sameena Jabeen Ahmed –  Catch Me Daddy

BEST ACHIEVEMENT IN PRODUCTION – The Goob

BEST TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT – Stephen Rennicks – Music –  Frank

BEST DOCUMENTARY – Next Goal Wins

BEST BRITISH SHORT – The Kármán Line

BEST INTERNATIONAL INDEPENDENT FILM – Boyhood

THE RAINDANCE AWARD – Luna

THE RICHARD HARRIS AWARD (for outstanding contribution by an actor to British Film) – Emma Thompson

THE VARIETY AWARD – Benedict Cumberbatch

THE SPECIAL JURY PRIZE – John Boorman