Helen Mirren, Queen of the BAFTAs

Dame Helen Mirren might have been joking on the way in: "They're all great women. It's a battle of the Dames and the broads," she said of her fellow Best Actress nominees, but things got slightly more serious when she was handed the actual award.

"What an honour, especially to be nominated - just to be nominated - amongst those incredible powerhouse performances this year from women."

She then broke down in tears, dedicating her performance to the late, great Ian Richardson, who sadly passed away on Friday.

“Many years ago when I started off as an actress I had the immense good fortune to work with an actor that was so generous at sharing his craft," she said.

It was Mirren’s first film BAFTA, which she can stick on the same shelf as her three previous telly ones if she wants, or simply build a brand new cabinet just for this one. It’s up to her.

Other British hopefuls weren’t quite so lucky. Daniel Craig lost out to hot Oscar tip Forest Whitaker for the Best Actor gong, and Casino Royale took home only one of its nine nominations – Best Sound – which must be a hearty disappointment for everyone involved.

Still, the Bond team had one more reason to be cheerful. Bond girl Eva Green became gong girl, winning the Orange Rising Star award, which is voted for by the public, and therefore much more worthwhile.