On a night when Boyhood, a film 12 years in the making, beat the Stephen Hawking biopic The Theory of Everything to the best film award, Moore was the leading lady as she was honoured for her performance as a woman struck down by Alzheimer’s in Still Alice.
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Her voice broke with emotion as she said: “And finally to the five Scottish women who poured love into me: my great aunts May, Mary and Cissy, my grandmother Flora and my mother Anne. This is for you.”
Moore has always been proud of her Scottish roots and took British citizenship four years ago to celebrate her Greenock-born mother Anne Love Smith, who died suddenly following an embolism two years earlier. The four-time Oscar nominee even wrote a book entitled My Mom Is A Foreigner, But Not To Me in 2013 about her experience growing up with a strong sense of her Scottish heritage.
Speaking afterwards backstage, an emotional Moore said: “My pitch kept going up because I was so nervous during my speech. I did want to mention my mother, my grandmother and my great aunts, because they’re all from Scotland. That was important to me.”
US director Richard Linklater was one of the night’s other big winners as he picked up the best director award for his coming-of-age masterpiece, Boyhood, starring Ellar Coltrane, Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke, which was also acclaimed as the best movie. It pipped The Theory of Everything to the top prize, after the biopic was earlier named best British film and won the best adapted screenplay as well as the leading actor Bafta for its star Eddie Redmayne.
Patricia Arquette was named best supporting actress for her performance in Boyhood, Thanking its director, she said last night: “I have been in a work of art here because of you, Richard Linklater.”
It was a disappointing night, however, for other Scottish hopefuls, with Fife playwright Gregory Burke, who was up for best British film and outstanding debut – for the thriller ’71 and Under the Skin, which was filmed in locations around Glasgow. They both failed to take home any prizes.
Former Bafta president and filmmaker Lord Attenborough, who died last year, was remembered with tributes from Robert Downey Jr and the Duke of Cambridge during the ceremony.
The Duke described him as “inclusive” and “a leader with a vision”, and praised his “passion for nurturing, supporting and developing talent”.
He said: “I hope that everyone who watches his films and learns about him as a person will be encouraged to follow his example.”
Downey Jr, who played the title role in Attenborough’s film Chaplin, said: “I’m sad. I miss you, Dickie.”
Benedict Cumberbatch was among the stars to grace the red carpet before the ceremony, arriving with his pregnant fiancee, Edinburgh-raised theatre director Sophie Hunter.
Professor Stephen Hawking was a special guest at the ceremony at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. He took to the stage to a standing ovation with the actress Felicity Jones, who plays his ex-wife in The Theory of Everything.
The scientist, described by Jones as the only man more intelligent than the night’s host Stephen Fry, joked that he was also “better looking” than the comedian, before presenting the Bafta for special visual effects to the makers of Interstellar.
One film that fared well last night was The Grand Budapest Hotel. The award for original music went to Alexandre Desplat for his work on the film, that also picked up Bafta for production design and costume design. Desplat paid tribute to the film’s director Wes Anderson, who he said was “unique”. He said: “His world looks like nobody else’s.”
Rockers Kasabian opened the show, performing in front of a big screen showing highlights from some of the nominated films. They came on stage after a brief introduction from Bafta chairman Anne Morrison who thanked the audience on behalf of host Stephen Fry for “coming to his wedding reception”.
BBC Films, responsible for titles including Philomena, Billy Elliot, Eastern Promises and Last Resort, won the Bafta for outstanding contribution to cinema.
Best Film – Boyhood
Director – Richard Linklater for Boyhood
Leading Actress – Julianne Moore for Still Alice
Leading Actor – Eddie Redmayne for The Theory Of Everything
Supporting Actor – JK Simmons for Whiplash
Supporting Actress – Patricia Arquette for Boyhood
Outstanding British Film – The Theory Of Everything
Cinematography – Birdman
Outstanding Debut By A British Writer, Director Or Producer – Stephen Beresford and David Livingstone for Pride
Original Screenplay – The Grand Budapest Hotel
Film Not In The English Language – Ida
Adapted Screenplay – The Theory Of Everything
Costume Design – The Grand Budapest Hotel
EE Rising Star – Jack O’Connell
Fellowship – Mike Leigh
Original Music – The Grand Budapest Hotel
Documentary – CitizenFour
Make-up and hair – The Grand Budapest Hotel
Production design – The Grand Budapest Hotel
British Short Film – Boogaloo And Graham
British Short Animation – The Bigger Picture
Editing – Whiplash
Sound – Whiplash
Animated Film – The Lego Movie
Special Visual Effects – Interstellar
Outstanding Contribution to British Cinema – BBC Films