Our anonymous voters finally reveal how they are going to cast their ballots.

Awards Whispers_red

Source: Stock Image

Producer 1, female, Bafta and Ampas voter

Best film: Nomadland for the Bafta, no question. I’m almost certain that I’ll vote the same for the Oscars… but Judas And The Black Messiah may sway me.

Outstanding British Film: I am still torn between Mogul Mowgli, His House and Rocks.

Best director: The Bafta best director list has been very satisfying to reflect on. I have oscillated between Chloé Zhao, Shannon Murphy and Jasmila Žbanić because they achieve such different things. But I think that my heart is set on Shannon Murphy. For the Oscars, it’s a straightforward decision – Chloé Zhao.

Lead actress: The Bafta list a tough one too, but Alfre Woodard in Clemency is outstanding, and that is the performance I’ll be voting for. For the Oscars, whilst Frances McDormand brings (seemingly effortless) tender nuance to her role in Nomadland, Viola Davis’s energy in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom was magnetic and will be getting my vote.

Lead actor: This is Riz Ahmed’s year, and I’ll be voting for him for the intimacy and rawness of his performance in Sound Of Metal - for both for the Bafta and the Oscar. 

Supporting actress: For the Bafta, Kosar Ali has my heart for the sheer energy of Rocks. In some way, Kosar Ali is also representative of all the “supporting” actresses of the film – Rocks is an ensemble film. Ensemble both in sense of the French “together” as well as in its Latin root “at the same time”. Rocks isn’t a film of centre/margin, it’s a film entirely set in a margin that has been displaced and made into the centre which is why it is so magical to behold. For the Oscars, I will be voting for Yuh-Jung Youn in Minari – with warmth, humour and a lot of misunderstandings: she is the grandma that every migrant child can intimately relate to. 

Supporting actor: I feel conflicted to have to choose between Daniel Kaluuya and LaKeith Stanfield for the Oscars because both were exceptional, and their roles were subtly symbiotic as well as actually speaking to the dynamic of centre/margin in relation to Black Power. That they should coexist in one category underlines how far this industry still has to go in the space of meaningful representation, even in a year of relatively pleasing representation dynamics. Following this line of reasoning, I will likely vote for Paul Raci for both the Oscars and the Baftas. His performance was the gravitational force of Sound Of Metal. His grace and wisdom on screen moved me immensely.

Best international/foreign-language film: I’ll be voting for Quo Vadis, Aida? This is an exceptional, powerful piece of filmmaking. I’ve been haunted by it ever since first seeing it and know that I will carry it with me for a long time to come.

Best documentary: The Bafta nominations pain me for the stark mirror they hold up to how the British Academy relates to the form. I will be voting for Collective – it is the only film deserving of such visibility and accolades, but I must underline that it is also an exceptional, powerful piece of filmmaking. On the Oscar list, I am still a little torn. I loved Crip Camp and am moved by everything the film represents and has enabled in the conversation of disability rights and representation… but I think that Time has the edge for me – it is one of the most tender, thoughtful and powerful documentaries of recent years. 

Minari c A24

Source: A24


Filmmaker, male, Bafta and Ampas voter

Best film and best director: For both Oscar and Bafta I am splitting my votes with Nomadland as best film, and Minari’s Lee Isaac Chung as best director.

Outstanding Britsh film: I am going with Rocks – it feels time a film like this should be rewarded where they have been ignored for 30 years.

Lead actress: Frances McDormand, because she is just brilliant. 

Lead actor: I think Chadwick Boseman will get it, for his performance and partly in sympathy.

Supporting actress: Yuh-jung Youn for both; such a strong performance and moving film. 

Supporting actor: Daniel Kaluuya. There is a real British pride and a wave of talent, which he is leading. 

Best international/foreign-language film: Minari. Even though we have seen similar storylines before, this still feels like a new experience.

Casting director, female, Bafta and Ampas voter

Best film: The Mauritanian is my pick for the Baftas – however, I must say I slightly struggled with this one, as I felt outstanding British film was a stronger, more exciting category. For the Oscar, Minari or Sound Of Metal, which are both brilliant fresh voices.

Outstanding British film: Rocks is exceptional in its spirit and as an example of successful collaborative film making, and Mogul Mowgli is a showcase of brilliant South Asian talent.

Best director: I’m torn between Lee Isaac Chung and Jasmila Žbanić for the Bafta – both beautifully accomplished and powerful films. For Oscar, my vote goes to Chung.

Lead actress: Alfre Woodard or Radha Blank at Bafta, and Viola Davis at Oscar. 

Lead actor: Riz Ahmed gets my Bafta vote, and for Oscar I am undecided between Riz and Steven Yeun.

Supporting actress: I am torn between Maria Bakalova and Kosar Ali at Bafta, and between Maria and Yuh-jung Youn at Oscar.

Supporting actor: It’s between Daniel Kaluuya and Paul Raci for both Bafta and Oscar. 

Best international/foreign-language film:  My choice for both is Quo Vadis, Aida?

Best documentary: Collective for Bafta and Crip Camp for Oscar.  

nomadland new

Source: Searchlight Pictures


Executive, male, Bafta and Ampas voter

Best film and best director: Nomadland is my film of the year, and deserves to win the best picture and director Oscars, and also at the Baftas.

Outstanding British film: The Father. It’s tragic and beautiful storytelling, and remarkably cinematic considering it’s all in one apartment. 

Lead actress: Frances McDormand gets my vote for the Oscar, but I am going with Rocks’ Bukky Bakray at the Baftas, Her’s was an amazing performance from a young untrained actress.

Lead actor: Anthony Hopkins for both Bafta and Oscar.

Supporting actress: While I will vote Borat Subsequent Moviefilm’s Maria Bakalova for the best supporting actress Oscar, I am plumping for Rocks’ Kosar Ali at the Baftas – a fresh, amazing and authentic performance.

Supporting actor: Daniel Kaluuya wins for me at both Oscar and Bafta.

Best international/foreign-language film: It has to be Another Round – a film that is as funny and entertaining as it is interesting and compelling.

Executive, female, bafta voter 

Best film: Nomadland. Delicately and masterfully put together, on a subject that is raw and urgent, and somewhat under the radar.

Outstanding British film: Rocks. Exuberant, engrossing and giving an authentic voice to a wonderful group of young women.

Best director: Chloé Zhao. For exquisite storytelling and astonishing performances (that Frances McDormand’s wasn’t even the standout for me says it all).

Lead actress: Frances McDormand. 

Lead actor: Mads Mikkelsen. The embodiment of vulnerable masculinity and hugely versatile performance.

Supporting actress: Kosar Ali. Lithe, charismatic and wonderful presence, always a joy to watch.

Supporting actor: Alan Kim, just incredible.

Best foreign-language/international film:  Les Misérables. An astonishing debut, urgent and compelling

Best documentary: Collective

Limbo_dir by Ben Sharrock_1 copy

Source: MUBI

Amir El-Masry (left) in ‘Limbo’

Acquisitions executive, male, Bafta voter

Best film: Nomadland. Beautiful, modest, profound and sad. The film stayed with me long after the first viewing.

Outstanding British Film: Limbo is the stand out. It’s a truly wonderful film.

Best director: Chloé Zhao for her beautiful film. It’s an extraordinary achievement.

Best actress: Bukky Bakray. She was outstanding in the film. A total joy to watch.

Best actor: Anthony Hopkins. A late-career stunner.

Supporting actress: Maria Bakalova. A fantastic performance of total commitment and bravery. She brought real emotional resonance to an absurd comedy.

Supporting actor: Daniel Kaluuya. Charismatic and empathetic beyond belief.

Best international/foreign-language film: Quo Vadis, Aida? is an important film. It’s well made and emotionally devastating. It’s also a warning from recent European history that peace is fragile and needs to be nurtured.

Best documentary: The Social Dilemma. We need to start to take back control of our lives from big tech and this film is a useful rallying cry. 

Producer 2, female, Bafta voter

Best film: Nomadland for its authenticity.

Outstanding British film: Saint Maud is the one that left me speechless so that’s the winner for me.

Best director: Shannon Murphy, which ought to also be up for best film, screenplay, actors and cinematography.

Lead actress: Vanessa Kirby for an absolute powerhouse of a performance.

Lead actor: Anthony Hopkins is incredibly heart-breaking in The Father but I think Adarsh Gourav should take it, as a newcomer with incredible range.

Supporting actress: Kosar Ali plays that role with so much personality, I loved her.

Supporting actor: Daniel Kaluuya for the charisma and how he holds himself.

Best international/foreign-language film: There’s one I haven’t seen yet (Quo Vadis, Aida?) which by all accounts might be the best so I need to reserve judgement on this. 

Best documentary: My Octopus Teacher because of all the warm feelings.

The Father

Source: Sundance Film Festival

The Father

Commissioning executive, male, Bafta and Ampas voter

Best film: I’m going for Nomadland for best picture for the Oscars for the simple reason that it is the most purely cinematic offering. As I did actually first see this film in a real cinema, I was able to fully appreciate the visual grandeur as well as its emotional power. My choice for the best film Bafta is The Father which couldn’t offer more of a contrast in terms of its location. Whereas Frances McDormand traverses the vast and open vistas of America, Anthony Hopkins is confined to his London flat, albeit one that is constantly shape-shifting.

Best director: Chloé Zhao for the Oscars and I went for Vinterberg as best director for the Baftas in a commendably diverse and strong field.

Outstanding British film: Trying to choose a winner from these nominees is probably the most difficult task of all, partly because there is so much variety in terms of budget, genre etc, and partly because there are elements of each that I genuinely loved. Ultimately, I have decided to plump for Rocks as the first among equals. The fact the production was built from the ground up through collaboration with characters who are portrayed on screen creates a truthful, compassionate and ultimately triumphant portrait of teenage girls navigating the challenges of growing up in London… for real!

Lead actress: Carey Mulligan’s performance in Promising Young Woman was just such a diabolical mix of wit and emotion that she gets my vote for best actress (Oscars) and would have doubled up at the Baftas but weirdly it didn’t make the cut (I’d love to know who was on that jury!). That omission allows me to choose Frances McDormand for best actress, she gives yet another remarkable performance that’s as feisty as it is heartfelt and as always delivers something deeper and more meaningful than one was expecting.

Lead actor: The extraordinary range of his performance sees Hopkins garner my vote for best actor (Oscars). And it’s Mads Mikkelsen for best actor (Baftas) which is obviously for his poignant and powerful performance as a whole, but I’d have handed him the award for that final unforgettable dance scene alone.

Supporting actress: The ever-wonderful Olivia Colman. Olivia was excluded from the Bafta list so I am going for Kosar Ali for her role in the heartbreaking and joyous Rocks. She gives such an authentic and raw performance that fully deserves a nomination alongside more experienced actresses.

Supporting actor: I am splitting my vote between Daniel Kaluuya (Oscars) for his high-octane depiction of Black Panther leader Fred Hampton in Judas And The Black Messiah and Barry Keoghan (Baftas) who is filled with sinister malice and yet strangely sympathetic in the den of thieves that populate Calm With Horses.

Best international/foreign-language film: Another Round. Thomas Vinterberg and Mads Mikkelsen revel in subverting the usual cautionary treatise about the effect of alcohol and instead revel in a mischievous and dramatic (a)morality tale. 

Best documentary: In another incredibly strong year for documentaries I went for Time (Oscars) and Collective (Baftas). Although the subject matter of these two films has nothing in common, they share similar themes in that they depict human perseverance in the pursuit of justice.