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banner Tuesday, 12 March, 2002, 09:48 GMT
UK Oscar stars party on
Jim Broadbent is hoping to add to his Bafta win
Jim Broadbent is hoping to add to his Bafta win
The UK's Oscar hopefuls have been out partying ahead of this year's Academy Awards.

Nominated stars, including Kate Winslet, Sir Ben Kingsley, Jim Broadbent, Helen Mirren and Tom Wilkinson were invited to a pre-ceremony lunch in Beverly Hills.

I don't think I have got a chance in hell

Helen Mirren
Director Ridley Scott and Sting, who are both up for gongs, well also at the star studded party.

Helen Mirren and Sir Ian McKellen are favourites for the best supporting actors' prizes after victory in the Screen Actors' Guild awards.

Mirren, who stars as the housekeeper Mrs Wilson in Gosford Park, said she doubts she will win the Oscar.

Winslet loves the Oscar parties
Winslet loves the Oscar parties
She said: "I'm just a tiny blip on that particular radar screen. Personally I don't think I have got a chance in hell.

"It's always a tough competition in this category because there are not enough leading roles for women so you get good roles for women very often in the supporting category."

She faces competition from her Gosford Park co-star Dame Maggie Smith, Winslet, Jennifer Connolly (A Beautiful Mind) and Marisa Tomei (In the Bedroom).

Winslet, who stars as the young Iris Murdoch in the film Iris, said she enjoys the parties.

She said: "This is the third time I will have done it. I'm quite good at losing it and knowing it's about enjoying the event."

Kingsley is
Kingsley is "delighted" with nomination
Wilkinson receives his first nomination for an Academy Award for In The Bedroom.

The Full Monty star said his recognition was "beyond your wildest dreams".

He said: "You mean it to happen, you don't play to lose. I'm delighted with the progress so far."

Wilkinson must beat Russell Crowe (A Beautiful Mind), Denzel Washington (Training Day), Will Smith (Ali) and Sean Penn (I Am Sam).

Broadbent said that being nominated for his role as Iris Murdoch's husband John Bayley in the movie Iris was "unbelievable".

Mirren is up for an award for Gosford Park
Mirren is up for an award for Gosford Park
The 52-year-old said: "I don't yet know what it means to be nominated. It was a great shock. I'm just getting used to the idea."

Also in the best supporting actor category is Sir Ben Kingsley, who said he was "delighted" with his nomination for his role in Sexy Beast, especially coming so soon after he was made a knight.

McKellen, Ethan Hawke (Training Day) and veteran actor Jon Voight (Ali) are also nominated.

Sting has been nominated for last two years
Sting has been nominated for last two years
Sting - nominated for best song for his track Until for the film Kate and Leopold - said he was "extremely surprised" to be short listed.

He said: "I was nominated last year , didn't win but had a great time. To be nominated twice in two years is quite something when you think of how many songs are written in a year."

The Oscars ceremony will be broadcast live on BBC Two on Monday 25 March from 0045-0600 GMT and reported live on BBC News Online.

See also:

11 Mar 02 | Film
Surprises at actors' awards
Links to more Oscars 2002 stories are at the foot of the page.

Links to more Oscars 2002 stories