Saturday, 23 October 2021

The Shape of Water leads Baftas nominations

 The Shape of Water 2

LONDON: Guillermo del Toro’s fantasy film “The shape of Water” leads the nominations at Sunday’s Baftas, where Hollywood stars will again turn the red carpet black in solidarity with the #MeToo movement.

The Cold War-era movie has 12 nominations, while crime drama “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” and “Darkest Hour”, about British wartime leader Winston Churchill, each have nine.

All three are up for the best film award, along with another World War II drama, Christopher Nolan’s “Dunkirk”, and Luca Guadagnino’s coming-of-age romance “Call Me By Your Name”.

The Shape of Water

Del Toro, Guadagnino, Nolan and Martin McDonagh (“Three Billboards”) are up for best director alongside Denis Villeneuve for “Blade Runner 2049” – an all-male lineup that has drawn criticism, particularly this year.

With Hollywood still reeling from the fallout of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, actresses look set to wear all-black outfits at London’s Albert Hall, just as they did at last month’s Golden Globes.

Bafta nominees Margot Robbie and Allison Janney are among those who say they will repeat the gesture, which was a powerful statement by the A-list against a culture of sexual harassment and abuse.

It is not yet clear whether the Duchess of Cambridge will follow suit, however, when she attends with her husband Prince William, president of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (Bafta).

The Shape of Water 1

Last year she wore a black Alexander McQueen gown with white flowers, but may be wary of being seen to breach royal protocol by aligning herself with a public protest.

In an open letter published Sunday before the awards, around 200 British stars demanded an end to sexual harassment and abuse.

Signatories, including Kate Winslet, Emma Watson, Emma Thompson, Kristin Scott Thomas, Keira Knightley and Saoirse Ronan, expressed solidarity with the Time’s Up movement in the United States and called for donations to a new “justice and equality fund” for victims.

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