Danny Boyle wins Oscar for directing ’Slumdog’

LOS ANGELES - British filmmaker Danny Boyle on Sunday won the Academy Award for directing “Slumdog Millionaire,” the acclaimed rags-to-riches tale set in the slums of Mumbai.

By (Reuters)

Published: Mon 23 Feb 2009, 10:33 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 8:52 AM

Boyle, 52, who had never before been nominated for an Oscar, beat David Fincher (”The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”), Ron Howard (”Frost/Nixon”), Gus Van Sant (”Milk”), and Stephen Daldry (”The Reader”). It was the movie’s seventh award of the night and it was a top contender for the final prize, best picture.

Boyle also becomes the first British winner of best director since Sam Mendes was honored in 2000 for “American Beauty.”

“You’ve been so generous to us this evening,” Boyle said, as he accepted his statuette onstage at the Kodak Theatre. The film earlier won six Oscars.

Boyle was the clear favorite to win the Oscar, having already amassed awards from bellwether groups, such as the Directors Guild of America.

“Slumdog Millionaire” marks a rare mainstream hit for Boyle, who rose to fame with the grim 1996 drugs tale ”Trainspotting.” It revolves around an orphan’s improbable triumph on the Indian version of “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire,” with frequent flashbacks to his tragic childhood.

Working with a cast of unknowns in Mumbai’s teeming slums, Boyle and his crew braved such obstacles as pythons, stifling heat and Indian bureaucracy during their three-month shoot.

After production wrapped in February 2007, the film was itself orphaned when it was dropped by financier Warner Independent Pictures, a division of giant Warner Bros.

It was eventually picked up by Fox Searchlight Pictures, which released it to commercial and critical acclaim in November. Since then, it has earned nearly $150 million at at the worldwide box office, although it has come under some criticism in India for its depictions of people living in Mumbai slums.

Here are the winners as they are announced:

  • Best Movie: Slumdog Millionaire

  • Best Actress: Kate Winslet - The Reader

  • Best Actor: Sean Penn - Milk

  • Best director: Danny Boyle - Slumdog Millionaire

  • Best supporting actress: Penelope Cruz - Vicky Cristina Barcelona
  • Best original screenplay: Milk
  • Best adapted screenplay: Slumdog Millionaire
  • Best animated feature film: Wall-E
  • Best animated short film: La Maison en Petits Cubes
  • Art direction: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
  • Costume design: The Duchess
  • Make-up: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
  • Cinematography: Slumdog Millionaire
  • Best live action short film: Spielzeugland (Toyland)
  • Best supporting actor: Heath Ledger - The Dark Knight
  • Best documentary feature: Man on Wire
  • Best documentary short subject: Smile Pinki
  • Visual effects: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
  • Sound editing: The Dark Knight
  • Sound mixing: Slumdog Millionaire
  • Film editing: Slumdog Millionaire
  • Best original score: Slumdog Millionaire
  • Best original song: Jai Ho - Slumdog Millionaire
  • Best foreign language film: Departures - Japan

Click here for the detail list of Academywinners and nominees

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