Slumdog Millionaire was the big winner at tonight’s Orange British Academy Film awards - scooping seven gongs including best film.
The weather might have been a total washout, but even the rain couldn't dampen the high spirits at this year's event. The gorgeous, the glamorous and, er, Mickey Rourke were out to celebrate an incredible year for movie-making.
Danny Boyle was named best director for his film which charts the path of a street kid in Mumbai from his childhood up to an appearance on the Indian version of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire.
The film, which is hoping to add some Oscar statuettes to its collection on February 22, also won awards for Simon Beaufoy’s adapted screenplay, AR Rahman’s music, Chris Dickens’ editing, Anthony Dod Mantle’s cinematography, while Glenn Freemantle, Resul Pookutty, Richard Pryke, Tom Sayers and Ian Tapp won the sound prize.
In his director's acceptance speech, Boyle revealed that the wiring at his dad's house blew out last night and gave "a big shout out" to everyone who helped to sort out an extension cable so he could watch.
It was a good night all round for British film, with Kate Winslet winning the hotly contested best actress category for The Reader, beating off stiff competition from Changeling actress Angelina Jolie, I've Loved You So Long's Kristen Scott Thomas and Doubt star Meryl Streep - not to mention herself, since she was also nominated for her award for her role in Revolutionary Road. Another British winner on the night was writer/director Martin McDonagh, who won best original screenplay for comedy In Bruges.
Mickey Rourke, meanwhile, turned the air blue as he collected his best actor award for The Wrestler. Accepting the award he said he had been "fucking up my career for my 15 years”.
Ross - who was under scrutiny after his recent radio debacle over comments to Andrew Sachs, which saw him taken off the air temporarily - joked to the audience: "After that speech, he's now suspended for three months."
Among the other acting gongs was Penelope Cruz who took home the best supporting actress award for her work on Woody Allen comedy Vicky Cristina Barcelona.
Other stars in attendance included Daniel Craig (looking double-oh dashing in his tux), Robert Downey Jr and Brad Pitt. Pitt - nominated for both best leading actor (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) and supporting actor (Burn After Reading) - drew huge cheers from the crowd as he arrived with Angelina.
One star tragically absent from the event was Heath Ledger, who was posthumously awarded the best supporting actor Bafta for his performance as The Joker in The Dark Knight.
Terry Gilliam, who was honoured with an Academy fellowship and had been working with Ledger on The Imaginarium Of Doctor Parnassus, also paid tribute to the late actor's talent, saying: "We only saw a tiny tip of the iceberg."
Among the big losers on the night were Frost/Nixon, which didn't win a single award, despite six nominations and Clint Eastwood's Changeling which left with nothing despite being up in eight categories. The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button filmmakers, meanwhile had to make do with production awards.
A full list of winners and nominees is below.
The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button - Kathleen Kennedy/Frank Marshall/Ceán Chaffin
Frost/Nixon - Tim Bevan/Eric Fellner/Brian Grazer/Ron Howard
Milk - Dan Jinks/Bruce Cohen
The Reader - Anthony Minghella/Sydney Pollack/Donna Gigliotti/Redmond Morris
WINNER: Slumdog Millionaire - Christian Colson
OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM
Hunger - Laura Hastings-Smith/Robin Gutch/Steve McQueen/Enda Walsh
In Bruges - Graham Broadbent/Pete Czernin/Martin McDonagh
Mamma Mia! - Judy Craymer/Gary Goetzman/Phyllida Lloyd/Catherine Johnson
WINNER: Man On Wire - Simon Chinn/James Marsh
Slumdog Millionaire - Christian Colson/Danny Boyle/Simon Beaufoy
THE CARL FOREMAN AWARD (for Special Achievement by a British Director, Writer or Producer for their First Feature Film)
Simon Chinn - Producer – Man On Wire
Judy Craymer - Producer – Mamma Mia!
Garth Jennings - Writer – Son Of Rambow
WINNER: Steve McQueen - Director/Writer – Hunger
Solon Papadopoulos/Roy Boulter - Producers – Of Time And The City
Burn After Reading - Joel Coen/Ethan Coen
Changeling - J Michael Straczynski
I've Loved You So Long - Philippe Claudel
WINNER: In Bruges - Martin McDonagh
Milk - Dustin Lance Black
FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
The Baader Meinhof Complex - Bernard Eichinger/Uli Edel
Gomorrah - Domenico Procacci/Matteo Garrone
WINNER: I've Loved You So Long - Yves Marmion/Philippe Claudel
Persepolis - Marc-Antoine Robert/Xavier Rigault/Marjane Satrapi/Vincent Parannaud
Waltz With Bashir - Serge Lalou/Gerhard Meixner/Yael Nahl Ieli/Ari Folman
ORANGE RISING STAR
WINNER: Noel Clarke
The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button - Alexandre Desplat
The Dark Knight - Hans Zimmer/James Newton Howard
Mamma Mia! - Benny Andersson/Björn Ulvaeus
WINNER: Slumdog Millionaire - A R Rahman
WALL•E - Thomas Newman
Changeling - Tom Stern
The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button - Claudio Miranda
The Dark Knight - Wally Pfister
The Reader - Chris Menges/Roger Deakins
WINNER: Slumdog Millionaire - Anthony Dod Mantle
Changeling - Joel Cox/Gary D Roach
The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button - Kirk Baxter/Angus Wall
The Dark Knight - Lee Smith
Frost/Nixon - Mike Hill/Dan Hanley
In Bruges - Jon Gregory
WINNER: Slumdog Millionaire - Chris Dickens
Changeling - Walt Martin/Alan Robert Murray/John Reit/Gregg Rudloff
The Dark Knight - Lora Hirschberg/Richard King/Ed Novick/Gary Rizzo
Quantum Of Solace - Eddy Joseph/Chris Munro/Mike Prestwood Smith/Mark Taylor
WINNER: Slumdog Millionaire - Glenn Freemantle/Resul Pookutty/Richard Pryke/Tom Sayers/Ian Tapp
WALL•E - Ben Burtt/Tom Myers/Michael Semanick/Matthew Wood
Changeling - James J. Murakami/Gary Fettis
WINNER: The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button - Donald Graham Burt/Victor J Zolfo
The Dark Knight - Nathan Crowley/Peter Lando
Revolutionary Road - Kristi Zea/Debra Schutt
Slumdog Millionaire - Mark Digby/Michelle Day
WINNER: The Duchess – Michael O'Connor
Changeling – Deborah Hopper
The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button – Jacqueline West
The Dark Knight – Lindy Hemming
Revolutionary Road – Albert Wolsky
SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS
Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull - Pablo Helman/Marshall Krasser/Steve Rawlins
Iron Man - Hal Hickel/Shane Patrick Mahan/John Nelson/Ben Snow
WINNER: The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button - Eric Barba/Craig Barron/Nathan McGuinness/Edson Williams
The Dark Knight - Chris Corbould/Nick Davis/Paul Franklin/Tim Webber Quantum Of Solace - Chris Corbould/Kevin Tod Haug
MAKE-UP AND HAIR
WINNER: The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button - Jean Black/Colleen Callaghan
The Dark Knight - Peter Robb-King
The Duchess - Daniel Phillips/Jan Archibald
Frost/Nixon - Edouard Henriques/Kim Santantonio
Milk - Steven E Anderson/Michael White
Love You More - Caroline Harvey/Anthony Minghella/Sam Taylor-Wood/Patrick Marber
Kingsland #1 The Dreamer - Kate Ogborn/Tony Grisoni
Ralph - Olivier Kaempfer/Alex Winckler
WINNER: September - Stewart le Maréchal/Esther May Campbell
Voyage D’Affaires (The Business Trip) - Celine Quideau/Sean Ellis
WINNER: Wallace And Gromit: A Matter Of Loaf And Death - Steve Pegram/Nick Park/Bob Baker
Codswallop - Greg McLeod/Myles McLeod
Varmints - Sue Goffe/Marc Craste