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The BAFTA Film Awards are an integral part of Hollywood’s annual awards season, helping to set the pace for the Academy Awards, and often recognizing performances and technical accomplishments that other awards ceremonies overlook. Ahead of this year’s event, which takes place on Sunday February 2, and airs that night at 9/8c on BBC America, here are some records and milestones from the BAFTA Film Awards’ illustrious past.

1. Dame Maggie Smith has won more Best Actress awards than anyone else – four.

She won for The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1969), A Private Function (1984), A Room with a View (1985), and The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne (1987). She also won a Best Supporting Actress award for Tea with Mussolini in 1999, taking her overall haul in competitive categories to five. On top of this, she received the Special Award in 1993 and a BAFTA Fellowship three years later.

2. Dame Judi Dench has won more Best Supporting Actress awards than anyone else – three – from a record nine nominations in this category.

She won for A Room with a View (1986), A Handful of Dust (1987), and Shakespeare in Love (1998). She also has two Best Actress wins for Mrs Brown (1997) and Iris (2001), taking her overall haul to five – the same number as her good friend Dame Maggie Smith.

3. The late Denholm Elliott won more Best Supporting Actor awards than anyone else – three.

And Elliott, described by film critic Roger Ebert as “the most dependable of all British character actors,” won them in three consecutive years: for Trading Places in 1983, A Private Function in 1984, and Defence of the Realm in 1985.

4. At just 14 years old, Jamie Bell became the youngest ever Best Actor recipient when he won for Billy Elliott in 2000.

Doesn’t he look surprised!

5. The late Peter Finch won more Best Actor awards than anyone else – a massive five.

He won for A Town Like Alice (1956), The Trials of Oscar Wilde (1960), No Love for Johnnie (1961), Sunday Bloody Sunday (1971), and Network (1976).

6. Sir Richard Attenborough’s Gandhi received a record 16 nominations in 1983, more than any film before or since.

It won five prizes on the night, including Best Picture, Best Direction, and Best Actor for Sir Ben Kingsley.

7. Three actors jointly hold the record for most Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor nominations combined: Peter Finch, Sir Laurence Olivier, and Sir Michael Caine, with eight apiece.

In 1984, Caine was presented with his Best Actor award for Educating Rita by the iconic Audrey Hepburn, herself a three-time BAFTA Film Award winner.

8. Nine directors have won the Best Direction prize twice: John Schlesinger, Roman Polanski, Woody Allen, Alan Parker, Louis Malle, Joel Coen, Peter Weir, Ang Lee, and Alfonso Cuarón.

If Martin Scorsese wins this year for The Irishman, he’ll become the 10th double winner in this category. He already holds the record for the most Best Direction nominations, with a very impressive 10 nods.

9. Sir Anthony Hopkins’ nominations now span more than half a century.

He was first nominated for Best Supporting Actor in 1969 for The Lion in Winter, and will compete in the same category this year for The Two Popes. In between, he’s won three Best Actor prizes for War & Peace in 1973, Silence of the Lambs in 1992, and Remains of the Day in 1984.

10. Kate Winslet has racked up eight acting nominations since 1996.

She’s won three times: Best Actress for The Reader in 2009, and Best Supporting Actress for Sense and Sensibility in 1996 and Steve Jobs in 2016.

As well as watching the BAFTA Film Awards on Sunday at 9/8c on BBC America, you can stream the red carpet arrivals live from London, starting at Noon at bbcamerica.com/BAFTARedCarpet

Who are you tipping to win at this year’s BAFTA Film Awards?

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Filed Under: BAFTA Film Awards
By Nick Levine