12 Years A Slave wins two Baftas
Slavery drama 12 Years A Slave resisted the force of Gravity to pick up two of the big awards at this year's Baftas.
It won the leading actor award for its star Chiwetel Ejiofor and was named best film. Its director Steve McQueen accepted the best film gong and thanked his "one and only mother for having the faith, never give up". He told the audience: "There are 21 million people in slavery as we sit here. I just hope 150 years from now our ambivalence will not allow another film-maker to make this film".
Chiwetel, who accepted his award from Uma Thurman, said he was "so deeply honoured and privileged to receive it" and thanked Steve for his "artistry and passion". He said: "You really brought us all through it and had the real vision to tell this extraordinary story. Thank you for this. This is yours by the way, I know that, you know that. I'm going to keep it but it's yours".
Gravity won six Baftas including outstanding British film and best director. Accepting his award, Alfonso said: "You can not tell from my accent but I consider myself a part of the British film industry."
The night ended with the honorary fellowship award for Dame Helen Mirren which was presented by the Duke of Cambridge who described her as "an extremely talented British actress who I should probably call granny".
Accepting her award, Dame Helen paid her own tribute to one of her former teachers, Alys Welding, who died recently and "alone was the person who encouraged me to be an actor".
Cate Blanchett was named best actress for her role in the Woody Allen film Blue Jasmine. She dedicated her win to Philip Seymour Hoffman, who died earlier this month in New York, calling him "a continual profound touchstone". She said: "Phil, buddy, this is for you, you b*****d. I hope you're proud."