Nick Hornby's British film adaptation of journalist Lynn Barber's memoir An Education, alongside director James Cameron's Sci-Fi Avatar and his ex-wife Kathryn Bigelow's direction of Iraq drama The Hurt Locker are going head to head with eight nominations apiece in the BAFTA film nominations. South African sci-fi District 9 gets seven with Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds and recession era drama Up In the Air get six apiece.
Avatar has already won the Golden Globe for best film drama while The Hurt Locker won the Screen Critics award, so a good British film thrown into the mix for the British Academy of Film and Television Awards really heats up this category.
All three go head to head to head in only two categories though:
- Best Film (along with Precious and Up in the Air)
- Best Director Lone Scherfig for An Education plus Neill Blomlamp for District 9 and Quentin Tarantino for Inglourious Basterds
None can do a clean sweep of the 4 major prizes Film, Direction, Acting as none are listed in both acting categories.
Jeremy Renner gets a nod for best leading actor for The Hurt Locker with Jeff Bridges Crazy Heart, George Clooney Up In the Air, Colin Firth A Single Man and Andy Serkis Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll. Carey Milligan is up in the actress category for An Education against Saoirse Ronan The Lovely Bones, Gabourey Sidibe Precious, Meryl Streep Julie & Julia and Audrey Taytou Coco Before Chanel.
An Education's Alfred Molina is up in the best supporting actor category facing Alec Baldwin It's Complicated, Christian McKay Me And Orson Wells, Stanley Tucci The Lovely Bones and Christoph Waltz Inglourious Basterds. Supporting actress is either nowhere or up in the air put will be precious all the same as Anne-Marie Duff and Kirstin Scott Thomas both for Nowhere Boy, Vera Farmiga and Anna Kendrick both for Up in the Air along with Mo'Nique for Precious make up the short list.
For Cinematography Avatar and The Hurt Locker face competition from District 9, Inglorious Basterds and The Road. For editing they face District 9, Inglorious Basterds and Up In the Air. For sound there two again face off along side District 9, Star Trek and Up and in special visual effects replace Up with Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.
An Education is also up for outstanding British film, adapted screenplay, costume design, make-up & hair. Avatar is in the running for music and production design while The Hurt Locker also features in the original screenplay shortlist.