Amour bags hat-trick of London Critics’ Circle Film Awards

Amour Amour also stars French film actor Jean-Louis Trintignant

Bafta and Oscar-nominated film Amour has bagged a hat-trick of London Critics' Circle Film Awards, including film and screenplay of the year for writer and director Michael Haneke.

French screen veteran Emmanuelle Riva was named actress of the year for her turn as an elderly music teacher who is struck down by a stroke.

Berberian Sound Studio was named British film of the year.

A single award for Les Miserables went to Anne Hathaway as supporting actress.

Amour won the Palme D'Or in Cannes in May last year, and picked up a Golden Globe award last week. It has been nominated for five Oscars and four Baftas.

Joaquin Phoenix and Phillip Seymour Hoffman, who both star in The Master, won best actor and best supporting actor respectively.

British actress of the year went to Bafta Rising star nominee Andrea Riseborough for her turn as an IRA informant in Shadow Dancer. Toby Jones was named best British actor for Berberian Sound Studio.

Jones told the BBC: "I'm genuinely surprised, it's an extraordinary category - and to be compared with such brilliant actors and for the film to be compared to such massive budget films."

He was up against Daniel Craig (Skyfall), Daniel Day-Lewis (Lincoln) and Charlie Creed-Miles (Wild Bill).

The film had to compete with The Imposter, Les Miserables, Sightseers and Skyfall.

Ang Lee was honoured with director of the year for his film Life of Pi, based on the Booker prize-winning novel by Yann Martel. The film's 3D special effects also earned it a technical achievement recognition for Bill Westenhofer.

Newcomers

The young star of tsunami drama The Impossible, Tom Holland, was presented with the young British performer of the year.

"I can't stop smiling... I was very nervous beforehand. It's really lovely to be recognised and to be here. Even if I hadn't won I'd have been delighted to be here," he told the BBC.

"This is the icing on the cake."

Tom Holland: "I can't stop smiling"

Alice Lowe and Steve Oram, whose brutal dark comedy Sightseers was nominated for a Bafta, were jointly given the breakthrough British film-maker award.

Lowe said: "We're blown away by this recognition. I was watching the clips of all the nominees and we were thinking 'We haven't got a chance.'"

Oram said it was particularly satisfying to be honoured by film critics, "the toughest crowd you can ever play to".

Jacques Audiard's Rust and Bone was named foreign language film of the year while The Imposter, the shocking true tale of a missing US schoolboy was named documentary of the year. Its British director Bart Layton was there to collect it.

Layton said it "feels really good to be in such esteemed company".

The film has also been nominated for a Bafta but missed out on an Oscar nomination.

"I was disappointed but not surprised about the Academy Awards," Layton told the BBC. "It was a long shot."

The London Film Critics' Circle comprises more than 120 members of UK film critics, broadcasters and writers.

Their highest honour, the Dilys Powell award for excellence in film, was presented to actress Helena Bonham Carter by director Mike Newell.

The actress plays Miss Haversham in Newell's Great Expectations and also stars in Les Miserables.

Chairman of the London Critics' Circle Film Awards, Rich Cline, said: "She won our British actress award back in 1998, and she's still giving unforgettable performances - including three in this past year alone."

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