Aftersun, the debut feature from Charlotte Wells, which premiered at Cannes and swept through the fall festivals to end up the best-reviewed film of the year, won in seven categories at the 2022 British Independent Film Awards last night: Best British Independent Film, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Debut Director, Best Cinematography, Best Editing and Best Music Supervision (in no small part due to that “Under Pressure” needle drop). The film, inspired by Wells’s growing up years, follows a young girl (Frankie Corio) and her father (Paul Mescal) in the 90s on a holiday to Turkey where burgeoning sexuality and depression hold court in their complex relationship. The film had led the nominations with 16.
Georgia Oakley’s debut film Blue Jean was next with 13 nominations, earning four wins in total: Best Lead Performance for Rosy McEwan and Best Supporting Performance for Kerrie Hayes. The social drama about homophobia in Thatcher-era Britain also won the Best Debut Screenwriter award for Oakley.
The pair of Letitia Wright and Tamara Lawrance won the newly created Best Joint Lead Performance award for The Silent Twins, marking the first time all acting wins were by female actors in non-gendered categories.
The annual ceremony was held in London and hosted by Ben Bailey Smith. Here is the full list of winners.
Best British Independent Film: Aftersun
Best Director: Charlotte Wells, Aftersun
Best Lead Performance: Rosy McEwen, Blue Jean
Best Supporting Performance: Kerrie Hayes, Blue Jean
Best Joint Lead Performance: Letitia Wright and Tamara Lawrance, The Silent Twins
Breakthrough Performance: Safia Oakley-Green, The Origin
Best Ensemble Performance: Our River… Our Sky
-Zainab Joda, Darina Al Joundi, Amed Hashimi, Mahmoud Abo Al Abbas, Basim Hajar, Labwa Arab, Meriam Abbas, Siham Mustafa
Best Screenplay: Charlotte Wells, Aftersun
Best Feature Documentary: Nothing Compares
Best International Independent Film: The Worst Person in the World
Douglas Hickox Award (Best Debut Director): Charlotte Wells, Aftersun
Best Debut Screenwriter: Georgia Oakley, Blue Jean
Breakthrough Producer: Nadira Murray, Winners
Best Debut Director – Feature Documentary: Kathryn Ferguson, Nothing Compares
Best Casting: Shaheen Baig, Blue Jean
Best Cinematography: Gregory Oke, Aftersun
Best Costume Design: Jenny Beavan, Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris
Best Editing: Blair McClendon, Aftersun
Best Effects: Dadiv Simpson, Men
Best Make-Up & Hair Design: Eugene Souleiman and Scarlett O’Connell, Medusa Deluxe
Best Original Music: Matthew Herbert, The Wonder
Best Music Supervision: Lucy Bright, Aftersun
Best Production Design: Helen Scott, Living
Best Sound: Tim Harrison, Raoul Brand, and Cassandra Rutledge, Flux Gourmet
The Raindance Discovery Award: Winners
Best British Short Film: Too Rough
Special Jury Prize: Open Door
The Richard Harris Award: Samantha Morton