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EDITIONS
Monday, 26 March, 2001, 05:28 GMT 06:28 UK
Brits miss out at Oscars
Jamie Bell and Julia Walters
Julie Walters missed out with Billy Elliot
Ridley Scott's epic Gladiator has won best film at the Oscars, but he failed to pick up the best director award on a disappointing night for the British.

Things started badly with Julie Walters and Dame Judi Dench missing out in the best supporting actress category.

The actresses had been nominated for their parts in Billy Elliot and Chocolat respectively.

Ridley Scott
Ridley Scott's Gladiator got best film
Albert Finney also lost out in the best supporting actor category for his part in Erin Brockovich, alongside Julia Roberts. Instead Benicio Del Toro won the award for Traffic.

Gladiator, which was partly filmed in the UK using British technicians, had been the bookies' favourite to take the best film award.

Scott had also been tipped for best director but missed out to Steven Soderbergh, who directed Traffic.

Gladiator's star Russell Crowe scooped the Oscar for best actor and in his acceptance speech said he owed it all to Scott.

'Dream'

"Really folks, you know, I owe this to one bloke - and his name is Ridley Scott," he said.

"You know when you grow up in the suburbs of Sydney, Auckland or Newcastle like Ridley Scott or Jamie Bell - the suburbs of anywhere - a dream like this seems unimaginable."

Catherine Zeta-Jones
Catherine Zeta-Jones presented an award
The first British success of the night went to Janty Yates, costume designer on Gladiator.

The clearly shocked winner said: "A huge thankyou to Ridley Scott for his vision and his incredible inspiration, but this doesn't belong to me alone. It belongs to a huge costume crew which worked so hard in Malta in Morocco and the UK."

The Roman epic is 63-year-old Scott's biggest hit since Blade Runner in 1982. He was last nominated for an Oscar for 1992's Thelma and Louise.

Standing ovation

British composer Rachel Portman missed out on an Academy Award for her score for the film Chocolat.

She had been hoping to add to the Oscar she picked up in 1997 for the score to Emma.

Trudie Styler and Sting
Sting failed to win an Oscar
Sting also failed to win an the award for best song for the Disney cartoon The Emperor's New Groove.

He had been hoping to repeat Phil Collins' triumph last year with My Funny Friend And Me, performed with David Hartley.

In a previously announced award, Jack Cardiff, one of the greatest British cinematographers, was honoured for lifetime achievement.

He is best known for films such as A Matter of Life and Death, The Red Shoes, The African Queen, The Vikings and Black Narcissus, for which he got his only Oscar.

Grabbing the trophy from Dustin Hoffman before a standing ovation, he said: "I must be dreaming."



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