'District 9' gets seven nods for Baftas

2010-01-23 00:00

DISTRICT 9 director Neill Blomkamp has been nominated in the best director category at this year’s British Academy of Film Awards (Baftas), Britain’s equivalent of the Academy Awards (Oscars).

The South African will be competing against James Cameron (Avatar), Lone Scherfig (An Education), Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker) and Quentin Tarantino (Inglourious Basterds) for the coveted prize.

Blomkamp and his writing partner, Terri Tatchell, will also be hoping for success in the best adapted screenplay category, one of seven nominations the South African-set thriller received.

Competition in this category includes Nick Hornby for An Education, Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Armando Iannucci and Tony Roche for In The Loop, Geoffrey Fletcher for Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire, and Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner for Up in the Air.

District 9’s other nominations were for cinematography, editing, production design, sound and special visual effects.

The gritty, lowbudget thriller tells the story of an extraterrestrial race who are forced to live in slum-like conditions in Johannesburg, after their ship stalled over the city 20 years earlier, marooning them on Earth.

Things get nasty when the government decides to forcibly move them.

Made for a modest (by Hollywood standards) $30 million, District 9 took $37 million in its opening weekend in North America and was praised by critics.

The awards will be presented on February 21.

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