Gallery: Brits sweep the boards at The Oscars

The Oscars provided the usual mix of gongs and gowns. Carl Jones reports on the highlights of 2014’s Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles

Check out interviews with all last nights big winners:

It was a good night for the Brits – and the chance to show off the latest trend for nude frocks.

Film and fashion go hand in hand at the Oscars and there was as much debate about the frocks on show as the gongs being handed out.

After a rainbow of colours last year, 2014 was a year of ivories, golds and classic whites.

And Oscar winner Cate Blanchett led the way with a stunning Giorgio Armani in a light tan, which she said was “heavy, but I love it”.

Even Angelina Jolie cast off her usual black number for an embellished gown in golds and nudes.

Blanchett was named best actress for her role in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine, beating Bullock, Dame Judi Dench, Amy Adams and Meryl Streep in the process. 

But the big winner of the night was British director Steve McQueen’s 12 Years A Slave, which resisted the force of Gravity to be named best picture at the Oscars.

The slavery epic also picked up awards for best adapted screenplay and best supporting actress for Lupita Nyong’o on a night when it seemed - for a while at least - that British-made Gravity was going to sweep the board.

The outer-space drama picked up a handful of Oscars for its backroom staff – many of whom are British – and the best director award for Alfonso Cuaron.

But McQueen, the former modern artist-turned film-maker got his moment in the spotlight as the ceremony in Los Angeles ended in triumph for his film which is based on the story of a free New Yorker, Solomon Northup, kidnapped and sold into slavery in the Deep South of the United States

McQueen, a Londoner who now lives in Amsterdam, said: “Everyone deserves not just to survive but to live. This is thee most important legacy of Solomon Northup. I dedicate this award to all the people who have endured slavery and 21 million people who still suffer slavery today”.

The best actor Oscar went to Matthew McConaughey for Dallas Buyers Club, a role that saw him lose several stone in order to play an Aids victim.

McConaughey’s Dallas Buyers Club co-star Jared Leto was the first big winner on the night and promised to celebrate to “the break of dawn”.

Les Miserables star Anne Hathaway handed the Oscar for best supporting actor to Leto for his role as an HIV-positive transgender woman in the film.

Leto, who dedicated his win to the “36 million people who have lost the battle to Aids”, beat big names including Michael Fassbender who was nominated for 12 Years A Slave.

Speaking backstage, Leto said: “I never thought this would happen, nobody talked about results or awards or potential, only how could we do the best job to bring this story to life. I never in a million years dreamed I would be here talking to you, it was a fantasy. I never dreamed they would give me a prize, I never won an award for doing anything on screen until Dallas Buyers Club.

There were two early British wins with the visual effects team behind Gravity picking up an Oscar before the award for best documentary short went to The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life – a week after its inspiration, pianist and world’s oldest Holocaust survivor, Alice Herz-Sommer, 110, died in London.

Director Malcolm Clarke, who now lives in Canada but learned his trade at the BBC and Granada TV, dedicated the win to her “extraordinary capacity for joy and her amazing capacity for forgiveness”.

The technical expertise of the UK film industry was recognised when Gravity picked up awards for sound mixing and sound editing.

Bill Murray paid tribute to  Ghostbusters co-star Harold Ramis, who died last month, before handing over another award – this time for cinematography – to Gravity which continued to pick up awards when director Alfonso Cuaron and Mark Sanger won the Oscar for film editing.

Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch joined Jennifer Garner on stage to present the award for production design to The Great Gatsby, before the Oscar for original score went to Steven Price for Gravity.

The musician from Nottingham praised Cuaron for inspiring him and thanked his family, joking: “Mum, Dad, Jenny sorry I made so much noise while I was growing up.”

Irish supergroup U2 lost out on the chance for an Oscar when the award for best song went to Let It Go from Frozen and Steve Coogan failed to win the best adapted screenplay Oscar for Philomena with 12 Years A Slave writer John Ridley picking up the prize.

The award for best original screenplay went to Spike Jonze for Her.

Among those enjoying the glitz and the glamour of Hollywood’s biggest night was former Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

And the winners are . . . Oscars highlights

Performance by an actor in a leading role: Matthew McConaughey for Dallas Buyers Club.

Performance by an actress in a leading role: Cate Blanchett for Blue Jasmine.

Performance by an actor in a supporting role: Jared Leto for Dallas Buyers Club.

Performance by an actress in a supporting role: Lupita Nyong’o for 12 Years A Slave.

Achievement in directing: Alfonso Cuaron for Gravity.

Best motion picture of the year: 12 Years A Slave.

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original score): Steven Price for Gravity.

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original song): Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez for Let It Go from Frozen.

Adapted screenplay: John Ridley for 12 Years A Slave.

Original screenplay: Spike Jonze for Her.

Best animated short: Mr Hublot.

Best cinematography: Gravity.

Best costume design: The Great Gatsby.

Best documentary feature: 20 Feet from Stardom.

Best documentary short: The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved my Life.

Best make-up: Dallas Buyers Club.

Best foreign film: The Great Beauty (Italy).

Best live action short: Helium.

Best production design: The Great Gatsby.

Best sound editing award: Gravity

Best sound mixing award: Gravity

Best visual effects: Gravity

Check out our video of the stars arriving at Elton John's Oscar After Party:

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