The BAFTAs 2024: Key Moments You Might Have Missed
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The BAFTAs 2024: Key Moments You Might Have Missed

Hot topics from last night's ceremony

The stars flooded London’s Royal Festival Hall last night for the 77th annual British Academy Film Awards, which were hosted this year by former Doctor Who star David Tennant. It was a big night for films like Oppenheimer and Poor Things, who scooped up seven and three awards respectively. But what were this year’s viral moments? Here are the highlights from the BAFTAs 2024, from dogs to royals and ‘Murder On The Dancefloor’.

Highlights From The BAFTAs 2024

Andrew Scott at the BAFTAs 2024

Andrew Scott at the BAFTAs 2024, image courtesy of Berluti

A Star-Studded Night

There was a slight worry the Berlin Film Festival clash would mean a less star-studded event, but the overlap didn’t seem to affect the guestlist too much. Some of the world’s biggest stars turned up for the awards, including Ryan Gosling, Margot Robbie, Florence Pugh, Andrew Scott, Paul Mescal, Robert Downey Jr, Bradley Cooper, Carey Mulligan and many more. An appearance from David Beckham also got people talking, as well as Prince William, who attended on his own as Kate is recovering from her recent abdominal surgery. 

Sophie Ellis Bextor’s Performance

While none of Saltburn’s nominations turned into awards, the buzzy film remained in the spotlight thanks to a performance from Sophie Ellis Bextor. Of course she sang ‘Murder On The Dancefloor’, her 2001 song which soared back into the charts after featuring in the film’s infamous scene, which sees Barry Keoghan dancing around the Saltburn mansion naked. He didn’t join in this time, but the cameras did pan to him watching along and smiling away.

Cillian Murphy’s Oppenhomies Shout Out

It was a night of wins for Oppenheimer, Christopher Nolan’s film which scooped up seven BAFTAs – including the biggest of all, best film. Cillian Murphy was also named best actor, and in his acceptance speech saw him delighting fans with a little shout out, in which he thanked his ‘Oppenhomies’. He was up against names like Bradley Cooper for Maestro, Barry Keoghan for Saltburn and Paul Giamatti for The Holdovers.

‘I’m a really proud Irishman, it means a lot,’ he said. ‘People have come up to me on the street and said they’ve seen the film [Oppenheimer] five, six, seven times… it’s very humbling… and it’s been a brilliant year for cinema.’

David Tennant And Bark Ruffalo

David Tennant took the reins from the likes of Richard E Grant and Alison Hammond to host the 2024 BAFTAs – and overall he was deemed a success. He had a little help from a co-host though: Bark Ruffalo, Michael Sheen’s dog who joined Tennant on stage. The awards show kicked off with a pre-recorded sketch about dog sitting Sheen’s new pet, which involved a Zoom call between Tennant and Sheen in which Sheen tells Tennant he’ll be bringing his dog Bark Ruffalo round on Sunday for him to look after. 

‘I don’t want any of your excuses, David, you promised,’ Sheen says, before ending the call. We then see Tennant frantically trying to get other celebrities to help, trying names like Stanley Tucci, Tom Hiddleston and Dame Judi Dench. 

The ceremony then began with Tennant arriving on stage with the dog in tow – but eventually Sheen, who was sitting in the front row, took Bark Ruffalo off his hands, allowing Tennant to present dog-free. 

Michael J Fox’s Appearance

Back To The Future’s Michael J Fox, who rarely makes public appearances, presented the best film award. The star was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease when he was just 29, and he came on stage in a wheelchair, but insisted on standing up at the podium to hand out the prize to Christopher Nolan. He received a standing ovation, and audience members said on social media his appearance had brought people to tears.

A Spotlight On The Zone Of Interest

It was a big night, too, for The Zone of Interest, Jonathan Glazer’s historical drama, which tells the story of the head of Auschwitz, who lived next to the camp with his young family. The film took home three awards for best sound, outstanding British film, and best film not in the English language.

In his acceptance speech for best film not in the English language, producer James Wilson said: ‘Walls aren’t new from before or since the Holocaust and it seems stark right now that we should care about innocent people being killed in Gaza or Yemen or Mariupol or Israel.’

Emma’s Stone’s Acceptance Speech

Yorgos Lanthimos’s Poor Things dominated the awards night too, taking home five awards – including leading actress for Emma Stone, who played Bella Baxter. She used her acceptance speech to thank her mother, saying: ‘I really want to thank my mom because she’s the best person I know in the world and she inspires me every single day and she’s always made me believe this kind of crazy idea that I could do something like this and I’m beyond grateful.’

Stone was up against names including Carey Mulligan for Maestro, Fantasia Barrino for The Color Purple and Margot Robbie for Barbie.

Featured image: Sophie Ellis Bexter at the BAFTAs, image courtesy of Roger Vivier