Movies

Chloe Zhao will be ‘very hungover tomorrow’ after Nomadland wins best film at Baftas: ‘It’s never too early to be drunk in California’


Chloe is the first Asian woman to win best director at the Baftas (Picture: BBC)

Chloe Zhao is ‘very honoured’ to be the first Asian woman to win best director at the Baftas.

Zhao has become the first Asian woman, and only the second woman after The Hurt Locker director Kathryn Bigelow, to win the Bafta for best director for the film Nomadland.

Speaking about the significance of her win to Metro.co.uk and other press, she said: ‘I feel very honoured. I love doing what I do and if this means more people like me get to live their dreams, I’m very grateful.’

Her win came in a landmark year where four women – Sarah Havron, Shannon Murphy, Jasmila Žbanić and Zhao – were nominated for best direction, and she said: ‘It’s about time, it’s great. More, please.’

Nomadland also beat The Father, The Mauritanian, Promising Young Woman and The Trial of the Chicago 7 to be named Best Film, with Zhao and producers Peter Spears, Mollye Asher and Dan Janvey all celebrating over Zoom.

Due to the crew being in the States, they were accepting their award at around 10.30am in Los Angeles, with Spears saying he would be celebrating with ‘bagels, lox, coffee and orange juice’.

Nomadland won best picture (Picture: Searchlight Pictures via AP)

Janvey joked that his big party would be a rather British binge, quipping: ‘I have one episode left in season two in The Great British Baking Show.’

However, Zhao’s plans sounded a bit wilder.

She said: ‘I don’t know about today but tomorrow morning I’ll very hungover. 

‘It’s never too early to be drunk in California. I’ll be having orange juice with a little something in there.’

Nomadland also took the award for best cinematography for Joshua James Richards and best actress for Frances McDormand. 

Other big winners at the Baftas included Promising Young Woman, which was named outstanding British film and best original screenplay for Emerald Fennell. 

Anthony Hopkins won best actor for The Father, which also won best adapted screenplay, while Daniel Kaluuya won best supporting actor for Judas and the Black Messiah and Yuh-jung Youn won best supporting actress for Minari.

Rocks actress Bukky Bakray was also named this year’s rising star.



Baftas 2021 winners

Best animated film – Soul
Best adapted screenplay – The Father
Best editing – Sound of Metal
Best film not in the English language – Another Round
Best cinematography – Nomadland
Best supporting actress – Yuh-jung Youn, Minari
Best original screenplay – Emerald Fennell, Promising Young Woman
Best supporting actor – Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah
Outstanding debut – Remi Weekes, His House
Best documentary – My Octopus Teacher
Best original score – Soul
Outstanding British film – Promising Young Woman
Rising star – Bukky Bakray, Rocks
Fellowship – Ang Lee
Best director – Chloe Zhao, Nomadland
Best actress – Frances McDormand, Nomadland
Best actor – Anthony Hopkins, The Father
Best film – Nomadland


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