Silent French film The Artist, about a 1920's star who loses his popularity following the advent of the "talkies", is looking unbeatable ahead of the Oscars in February. Starring Jean Dujardin and directed by Michel Hazanavicius, the movie leads the way with 12 nominations for this year's BAFTA and scooped major prizes at the recent Golden Globes.
At the BAFTA the movie finds itself in the category of Best Film alongside the British cold war spy thriller 'Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy', with Gary Oldman and Colin Firth. The French movie is the overwhelming favorite to take the evening's biggest prize, though there could be success for Oldman, who is up for Best Actor. Elsewhere, Brad Pitt is once again nominated for his role in baseball movie Moneyball, while Michael Fassbender continues his strong awards season with a nomination for his role as a sex-addicted Manhattan businessman in Shame. Actress Meryl Streep is almost certain to continue her awards dominance after being nominated for Best Actress, though 'We Need to Talk About Kevin' star Tilda Swinton could upset the form-guide with a win in the same category. A big winner at the BAFTA is Martin Scorsese's magical 3d tale 'Hugo', which landed nine nominations including Best Director for the veteran filmmaker. The awards ceremony will be hosted by broadcaster and writer Stephen Fry at the Royal Opera House in London on February 12.
The 12 nominations for The Artist follow the movie's success at the Golden Globes on Sunday (15 January, 2012). It is now the huge favourite to win Best Film at the Oscars in February, and can only realistically be stopped by Alexander Payne's The Descendants.