‘The Favourite’ Dominates at the European Film Awards

Antonio Banderas and Olivia Colman win the acting awards for “Pain and Glory” and “The Favourite”

The Favourite
"The Favourite" / Fox Searchlight

Eleven months after receiving 10 Academy Award nominations, Yorgos Lanthimos’ black comedy “The Favourite” dominated the European Film Awards on Saturday night in Berlin, winning four awards including the top honor, European Film.

Although the film was released in the U.S. in 2018, it was eligible for the EFA because it was released in January 2019 in the U.K.

Lanthimos also won the best director award, and his film about intrigue in the court of Queen Anne was named the year’s best European comedy. Olivia Colman was named best actress for the role that won her an Oscar in February.

Best-actor honors went to Antonio Banderas for Pedro Almodovar’s “Pain and Glory.”

Ladj Ly’s “Les Miserables” won the European Discovery award, “For Sama” was named the best European documentary and “Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles,” an animated Spanish film about director Luis Buñuel shooting his 1933 film “Land Without Bread,” won the award for animated feature.

Celine Sciamma won the screenwriting award for “Portrait of a Lady on Fire.”

Honorary awards went to actress Juliette Binoche and director Werner Herzog.

Going into the ceremony, Roman Polanski’s “An Officer and a Spy” was tied for the lead in nominations, four, with “Pain and Glory,” “The Favourite” and Marco Bellocchio’s “The Traitor.” The Polanski film did not win in any category.

Also at the ceremony, which was filled with playfully surreal skits, the European Film Academy announced that it was joining with the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam and the International Film Festival Rotterdam to create the International Coalition for Filmmakers at Risk, an organization “aimed at supporting filmmakers facing political persecution for their work.”

Over the last 10 years, seven European Film Award winners have gone on to receive Oscar nominations for Best Foreign Language Film, and three of those — “Amour” in 2012, “The Great Beauty” in 2013 and “Ida” in 2014 — have won the Oscar. “Amour” is one of three EFA winners to be nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars, along with “The Full Monty” in 1997 and “Life Is Beautiful” in 1998, but none have won in that category.

The winners:

European Film: “The Favourite”
European Comedy: “The Favourite”
European Discovery: “Les Miserables”
European Documentary: “For Sama”
European Animated Feature Film: “Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles”
European Director: Yorgos Lanthimos, “The Favourite”
European Actress: Olivia Colman, “The Favourite”
European Actor: Antonio Banderas, “Pain and Glory”
European Screenwriter: Celine Sciamma, “Portrait of a Lady on Fire”
European Short Film: “The Christmas Gift,” Bogdan Muresanu
European Achievement in Fiction Series: “Babylon Berlin,” Achim von Borries, Henk Handloegten and Tom Tykwer
Eurimages Coproduction Award: Ankica Juric
People’s Choice Award: “Cold War,” Pawel Pawlikowski
European Achievement in World Cinema: Juliette Binoche
EFA Lifetime Achievement Award
: Werner Herzog