King's Speech scoops four Oscars

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Colin Firth accepts the Oscar for best performance by an actor in a leading role for The King's Speech at the 83rd Academy Awards (AP)

The King’s Speech has been crowned Best Picture at the Oscars, with Colin Firth threatening to dance with joy after winning the award for Best Actor.

The British film also picked up Best Director for Tom Hooper and Best Original Screenplay by David Seidler.

Firth told the audience at the 83rd Academy Awards at the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles: “I have a feeling my career has just peaked. My deepest thanks to the Academy.

“I’m afraid I have to warn you that I’m experiencing stirrings somewhere in the upper abdominals which are threatening to form themselves into dance moves which, joyous as they may be for me, it would be extremely problematic if they make it to my legs before I get off stage.”

Speaking afterwards, he said he never expected the film to have such broad appeal: “What has struck me is that the emotional response to this has been quite personal and diverse. It’s very powerful to be on the receiving end of that kind of feedback.”

The team behind the film was presented with the Best Picture award by Steven Spielberg, and producer Iain Canning thanked the “best of British crew” and the film’s “acting royalty”.

The Fighter’s Melissa Leo won Best Supporting Actress Oscar and Welsh-born Christian Bale picked up Best Supporting Actor for the same film. Bale said: “Bloody hell. What a room full of talented, inspirational people and what am I doing in the midst of you?”

The Best Actress award went to Natalie Portman for her role in the dark ballet thriller Black Swan, while London-born Christopher Nolan saw his film, Inception, miss out on the big prizes but still picked up four Oscar – one more than The Social Network.

Bristol-based graffiti artist Banksy lost out in the race for the Best Documentary award which went to Inside Job, which tells the story of the collapse of America’s financial institutions.

British musician Atticus Ross picked up the Oscar for Best Original Score for his work with Trent Reznor for The Social Network, beating Alexandre Desplat and The King’s Speech to the prize.

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