Baftas 2016: The Revenant bags three of biggest awards

Leonardo DiCaprio (right) holding his BAFTA for Best Award with actor Tom Cruise. Picture: Getty Images

Leonardo DiCaprio (right) holding his BAFTA for Best Award with actor Tom Cruise. Picture: Getty Images

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The Revenant dominated this year’s Baftas last night, winning three of the biggest awards including best actor for Leonardo DiCaprio.

The outdoor epic was named best film, while Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu received the best director award.

As an actor I’ve been influenced by so many British actors. I want to thank one particular British actor and that is Mr Tom Hardy

Leonardo DiCaprio

DiCaprio, 41, hailed the influence of British actors on his career, thanked his co-star Tom Hardy and sent happy birthday wishes to his mother as he collected his award.

The American, who is hoping to collect his first Oscar later this month, said: “Thank you Bafta – I’m absolutely honoured by this award.

“As an actor I’ve been influenced by so many British actors. I want to thank one particular British actor and that is Mr Tom Hardy.

“Of course Alejandro - thank you for becoming a great friend. I didn’t grow up in a life of privilege. Mom – happy birthday. I love you very much.”

DiCaprio beat last year’s winner Eddie Redmayne, who was nominated for The Danish Girl, as well as Michael Fassbender, Matt Damon and Bryan Cranston.

Mexican director Inarritu described his win as “a true honour” and paid tribute to the film’s cast. The 52-year-old, who won the best director Oscar in 2015 for Birdman, was presented with his Bafta by actor Stanley Tucci.

Brie Larson was named best actress for her leading role in claustrophobic drama Room.

The American, who was the overwhelming favourite for the award, was unable to attend the event because she was filming elsewhere.

Picking up the award on her behalf, Room director Lenny Abrahamson said: “Brie, looking for a little bit of something light and nice to do after Room, is wrestling a large gorilla in Australia.”

He said she is “incredibly honoured” to receive the award and he described her as “one of the best actors of her generation”.

Redmayne presented Kate Winslet with the best supporting actress gong for her performance in Steve Jobs.

Collecting the award, Winslet said she was quite “overwhelmed”.

She hailed director Danny Boyle as “amazing” to work with, and called the film’s lead star Fassbender “an extraordinary actor”.

Mark Rylance was named best supporting actor for his role as a Russian spy in Bridge of Spies.

Sidney Poitier won the Bafta Fellowship Award but could not be at the event due to ill-health. Instead, the award was presented to him on screen by actor Jamie Foxx and Poitier’s daughter. The 88-year-old described it as an “extraordinary moment”.

Oprah Winfrey said of Poitier: “I just love this man... He became a symbol of what was possible as an African-American in the United States. You are an unyielding example of how true strength of character has the power to shift an industry.”

Protesters staged a peaceful demonstration outside the Royal Opera House in London, where the ceremony took place, calling for more diversity in front of the camera.

Members of the Creatives of Colour Network lined up beside the red carpet with actor Leon Herbert, who appeared in the films Batman and Alien 3.

Competing with the screams of excited fans, the group chanted “cameras, lights, action, diversity and satisfaction” to promote their message.

Members held a banner which read: “The TV and film industry are male, pale and stale. In fear of diversity, opportunity and inclusion. We want a quota system.”

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