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Bafta announce shortlist for 2004 awards

Story by: Jack Foley

QUENTIN Tarantino's violent revenge flick, Kill Bill: Volume One, has been included in the Bafta shortlist for best film - but another samurai sword epic, The Last Samurai, has been snubbed.

The prestigious awards, viewed by many as the British equivalent of the Oscars, will be announced next month, and has also included early Oscar favourites, The Return of the King, Cold Mountain and Mystic River on its nominees list.

British movies Calendar Girls and Love Actually were also among the 15 notable nominees.

But while Cruise, whose movie did not make it on to the Golden Globes best film shortlist either, the actor does feature in the running for best actor.

The most popular nominee for Bafta members, however, was Anthony Minghella's US Civil War epic, Cold Mountain, which leads the field with 18 nominations, including best actor (Jude Law), best actress (Nicole Kidman), and best supporting actor and actress, for Philip Seymour Hoffman and Renee Zellweger, respectively.

US actress, Scarlett Johansson, 19, is featured twice on the best actress longlist - for her eye-catching roles in Sofia Coppola's Lost in Translation and Peter Webber's Girl With a Pearl Earring.

But the youngest actress on the best actress list is Keisha Castle-Hughes, who, at 13, received a nod her her acclaimed performance in Whale Rider.

Also among this year's hopefuls for best film are family favourite, Finding Nemo, the oddball comedy, The Station Agent, about a man born with dwarfism, and epics such as Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Pirates of the Caribbean, Seabiscuit, and 21 Grams.

Last year's best picture winner was holocaust film, The Pianist, which went on to enjoy considerable success at the Oscars, for star, Adrien Brody, and director, Roman Polanski.

The best film shortlist in full:
21 Grams
Big Fish
Calendar Girls
Cold Mountain
Finding Nemo
Girl With a Pearl Earring
Kill Bill Volume I
Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
Lost in Translation
Love Actually
Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World
Mystic River
Pirates of the Caribbean
The Station Agent

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