'The Great Gatsby' Sweeps Australian Academy Awards
SYDNEY – It was Baz Luhrmann's night at the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards Thursday, as the director-producer's lavish 3D spectacle The Great Gatsby won best film and best director and four other trophies, while the award show's closing performance was a a glitzy musical tribute to his "Red Curtain" films, with songs from Strictly Ballroom, Moulin Rouge, Romeo and Juliet and Gatsby.
As it did in the craft and technical awards on Tuesday, Gatsby nearly swept the field, winning in six of its seven nominated categories. Other Gatsby wins included best lead actor for Leonardo DiCaprio, best supporting actress for Elizabeth Debicki and best supporting actor for Joel Edgerton, as well as best adapted screenplay.
Gatsby's wins effectively shut out its major competition, Kim Mordaunt's Laotian-language Oscar entrant, The Rocket, which had been nominated in twelve categories overall.
However, Mordaunt won best original screenplay for The Rocket and Luhrmann, while accepting the best actor award on behalf of DiCaprio, received a warm round of applause for his heartfelt encouragement of The Rocket's Laotian star, Sitthiphon Disamoe.
Away from Gatsby's dominance, the best lead actress award went somewhat controversially to Rose Byrne for her 7-minute appearance in one chapter of omnibus feature, The Turning. It was the shortest role ever to receive a best actor award.
In the TV categories, Top Of The Lake, unsurprisingly won best mini-series or telefeature, while ABC TV's indigenous themed contemporary urban drama, Redfern Now, won best TV drama. Josh Thomas' Please Like Me won best TV comedy.
Notably, The Nine Network's retelling of the relationship of Australia's two most powerful media barons, Kerry Packer and Rupert Murdoch, won three awards: best direction for Geoff Bennett, best actor for Lachy Hume's portrayal of Packer, and best supporting actor for Luke Ford.
If Baz Lurhmann had the spotlight on him most of the night, it could be argued that Jacki Weaver occasionally stole it. After receiving the Raymond Longford Award for lifetime achievement, with tributes from Jack Thompson, Claudia Karvan, David Michod and Bradley Cooper, the 64-year old blushed as she revealed that George Clooney is the actor she'd most love to work with. She also ended up with the quote of the night, declaring, after the audience were treated to a sneak peak of the upcoming violent crime thriller, The Rover, with Robert Pattinson: “Wow, another light comedy from David Michod”.
The full list of the 2014 AACTA award winners is below.
THE GREAT GATSBY Baz Luhrmann, Catherine Martin, Douglas Wick, Lucy Fisher
and Catherine Knapman
THE GREAT GATSBY Baz Luhrmann
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
THE ROCKET Kim Mordaunt
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
THE GREAT GATSBY Baz Luhrmann and Craig Pearce
BEST LEAD ACTOR
Leonardo DiCaprio THE GREAT GATSBY
BEST LEAD ACTRESS
Rose Byrne THE TURNING
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Joel Edgerton THE GREAT GATSBY
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Elizabeth Debicki THE GREAT GATSBY
BEST TELEVISION COMEDY OR LIGHT ENTERTAINMENT SERIES
PLEASE LIKE ME Todd Abbott - ABC2
BEST REALITY TELEVISION SERIES
MASTERCHEF: THE PROFESSIONALS Margaret Bashfield, David McDonald, Mark
Barlin and Tim Toni - Network Ten
BEST TELEVISION DRAMA SERIES
REDFERN NOW - SERIES 2 Darren Dale and Miranda Dear - ABC1
BEST TELEFEATURE OR MINI SERIES
TOP OF THE LAKE Emile Sherman, Iain Canning, Jane Campion and Philippa Campbell - FOXTEL – UKTV
BEST DIRECTION IN A TELEVISION DRAMA OR COMEDY
POWER GAMES: THE PACKER-MURDOCH STORY Part 1 Geoff Bennett - Nine
BEST SCREENPLAY IN TELEVISION
OFFSPRING - SEASON 4 Episode 13 Debra Oswald - Network Ten
BEST LEAD ACTOR IN A TELEVISION DRAMA
Lachy Hulme POWER GAMES: THE PACKER-MURDOCH STORY - Nine Network
AACTA AWARD FOR BEST LEAD ACTRESS IN A TELEVISION DRAMA
Claudia Karvan THE TIME OF OUR LIVES - ABC1
BEST GUEST OR SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A TELEVISION DRAMA
Luke Ford POWER GAMES: THE PACKER-MURDOCH STORY Part 2 - Nine Network
BEST GUEST OR SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A TELEVISION DRAMA
Kat Stewart OFFSPRING - SEASON 4 Episode 9 - Network Ten
BEST PERFORMANCE IN A TELEVISION COMEDY
Shaun Micallef SHAUN MICALLEF'S MAD AS HELL - SERIES 2 - ABC1
BEST FEATURE LENGTH DOCUMENTARY
RED OBSESSION Warwick Ross
AACTA RAYMOND LONGFORD AWARD
BYRON KENNEDY AWARD
Australian Cinematographers Society (ACS)