2012 marked James Bond's return to the bigscreen but it also put 007 firmly back in the capital with much of 'Skyfall'filmed in London. It went on to become the UK's highest grossing movie last year,with that commercial success now reflected in _this _year's BAFTAnominations.
The 23rd Bond film, directed by Sam Mendes,was shortlisted in eight categories including Outstanding British Film, Cinematogtraphyand Production design. On-screen talent recognised includes Dame JudiDench who is shortlisted for Best Supporting Actress for her role as spymaster M. Skyfall's soundtrack also gets a nomination for its soundtrack - anod to Tottenham singer Adele who sings the theme tune of the same name.
Elsewhere another Dame isrecognised, and an Essex one at that! Dame Helen Mirren is up for Best Leadingactress for her performance in 'Hitchcock'. She stars opposite Anthony Hopkinsas the legendary filmmaker's wife, Alma Reville. Inthe category she goes up against Emmanuelle Riva for Amour, JenniferLawrence for Silver Linings Playbook, Jessica Chastain for Zero Dark Thirty andMarion Cotillard for Rust and Bone.
The West End stage has also made a contribution, albeit indirectly. Tom Hooper's big screen version of 'Les Miserables' has received ninenominations (just one less than pack leader 'Lincoln') including Best Actor forHugh Jackman, Best Supporting Actress for Anne Hathaway, Best Film andOutstanding British Film. However, London-born Hooper was not included in theDirector category.
Elsewhere, a nod to Enfield born Dexter Fletcherrecognised for his directing and writing on 'Wild Bill'. And Mike Newell'sadaptation of Dickens' 'Great Expectation' managed a nomination for CostumeDesign.
As with the Golden Globes (announced at the end of lastyear) the BAFTA nominations are a good indicator of how Oscar nods will turnout. These are announced tomorrow where it's heavily predicted Spielberg's epic'Lincoln' will be the front-runner.
And while Bond films have been largely disregarded by theAcademy, 'Skyfall' could very well be in the running for Best Picture. What iscertain is that 007 will be celebrated at the Oscars this year in a specialtribute to mark the franchise's 50th anniversary.