Europeans take top acting Oscars

Marion Cotillard becomes first French actress to win best actress Oscar since 1960.

    The only other time foreigners took all four of the acting prizes was in 1964  [Reuters]

    Europeans have swept up the top acting prizes at the 80th annual Oscars ceremony in Hollywood, California.
    Daniel Day-Lewis, a British-Irish actor, late on Sunday was awarded the Oscar for best actor, for his role as a sadistic early 20th century oil prospector in "There Will Be Blood".
    "That's the closest I'll ever come to getting a knighthood," Day-Lewis said, upon receiving his prize from Helen Mirren, the actress who played Queen Elizabeth in "The Queen".
    Marion Cotillard was named best actress in "La Vie En Rose" for her portrayal of singer Edith Piaf, becoming the first French actress to win the Oscar in that category since 1960.
    'No Country' honoured
    For supporting actor, Javier Bardem became the first Spaniard to win an acting Oscar, playing a psychopathic hitman in "No Country for Old Men."
    "This is pretty amazing. It's a great honour for me to have this," Bardem said, paying tribute to directors Joel and Ethan Coen.

    The Oscar goes to...

    Best picture, director and adapted screenplay: "No Country For Old Men"

    Lead actor: Daniel Day-Lewis in "There Will Be Blood"

    Lead actress: Marion Cotillard in "La Vie en Rose"

    Supporting actor: Javier Bardem in "No Country For Old Men"

    Supporting actress: Tilda Swinton in "Michael Clayton"

    Foreign language film: "The Counterfeiters" - Austria

    Animated feature: Brad Bird for "Ratatouille"

    Documenatary: Alex Gibney and Eva Orner for "Taxi to the Dark Side"

    Original screenplay: Diablo Cody for "Juno"

    Cinematography: Robert Elswit for "There Will Be Blood"

    Original score: Dario Marianelli for "Atonement"

    "Thank you to the Coens for being crazy enough to think I could do that and put one of the most horrible hair cuts in history on my head," he added.
    Coming out on top, "No Country for Old Men" also took scooped up Oscars for best picture, best adapted screenplay, and best director for brothers Joel and Ethan Coen.
    British actress Tilda Swinton won best supporting actress for her role in "Michael Clayton".
    Asked about the number of European winners at the show, Swinton replied:  "Dude, Hollywood is built on Europeans. I'm just really sad I couldn't give a speech in gaelic but if I could, I would have."
    The only other foreign sweep of the US Academy Awards acting prizes occurred in 1964.
    In other highlights, the best documentary Oscar went to Alex Gibney's "Taxi to the Dark Side."
    The film spotlights interrogation techniques at US military facilities, investigating the death in custody of a young Afghan taxi driver, called Dilawar, at a prison in Afghanistan in 2002.
    "This is dedicated to two people who are no longer with us - Dilawar, the young Afghan taxi driver, and my father a Navy interrogator who urged me to make this film because of his fury at what was being done to the rule of law," Gibney said as he collected his Oscar.
    "Let's hope we can turn this country around, move away from the dark side and go back to the light."
    Austria's "The Counterfeiters", meanwhile, won the best foreign film award for its true story of a group of Jewish prisoners recruited by the Nazis to mount one of the largest counterfeiting operations in history.
    The Oscars this year took place after months of uncertainty following the Hollywood screenwriters strike that wreaked havoc with the entertainment industry's awards season.
    The Golden Globes award show was canceled after stars vowed to boycott the event in support of striking writers and fears of a similar no-show had plagued the Oscars until the strike was called off earlier this month.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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