WAKE UP! I'VE WON AN OSCAR; ACADEMY AWARD GLORY NIGHT FOR SWINTON AS EUROPE SWEEPS ALL FOUR ACTING PRIZES Tilda Calls Home at 4am to Tell Sleeping John of Win

Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland), February 26, 2008 | Go to article overview

WAKE UP! I'VE WON AN OSCAR; ACADEMY AWARD GLORY NIGHT FOR SWINTON AS EUROPE SWEEPS ALL FOUR ACTING PRIZES Tilda Calls Home at 4am to Tell Sleeping John of Win


Byline: By Charlie Gall and Jim Lawson

TILDA Swinton's partner slept through her Oscar win - because he doesn't have a telly.

Tutti Frutti writer John Byrne found out in a low-key phone call home to Scotland minutes after Tilda got her gong.

Byrne, 68, said: "It's wonderful. I am very pleased about it. There was no party here, the party was in Hollywood.

"I did not watch it because I have not had a telly for over six years.

"Tilda phoned me two or three minutes after 4am. I had just woken up.

"She said in a very small voice, 'I've won.' She'd only just received the Oscar."

The 47-year-old's performance as lawyer opposite George Clooney in legal thriller Michael Clayton earned her the same best supporting actress prize she won at the Baftas.

It completed a European clean sweep of the acting awards - for only the second in the Oscars' 80-year history.

British actor Daniel Day-Lewis won best actor for There Will Be Blood at the ceremony in Los Angeles.

He knelt down to be "knighted" by fellow Brit Helen Mirren - who won an Oscar last year for The Queen - as she handed over his prize.

France's Marion Cotillard's role as Edith Piaff in La Vie En Rose got her the best actress gong.

And Javier Bardem, from Spain, was best supporting actor for No Country For Old Men, which also took best picture, adapted screenplay and direction.

The only other time all four acting winners were foreign-born was 1964, when the recipients were Britons Rex Harrison, Julie Andrews and Peter Ustinov and Russian Lila Kedrova.

Tilda's toyboy lover Sandro Kopp was with her as she collected the award at the Kodak Theatre.

Byrne said: "She was so surprised, she really was. I'm delighted for her and it is well deserved. It's your peers so it really is worth it and it was richly deserved.

"I went back to sleep absolutely delighted and I treated myself to a slightly longer lie-in this morning.

"I don't know yet when she will be home or which party she went to over there."

The couple's 10-year-old twins Honor and Xavier greeted the news with glee back in Nairn.

Byrne said "They came up and said to me, 'One, two, three, four, mummy's won an Oscar.' "They do not even know what it is.

"They are not aware of the significance of it. They are just pleased that their mummy has won a prize." But he might never get to see her Oscar - as she said she was giving it away in her acceptance speech.

Tilda told the audience: "I have an American agent who is the spitting image of this.

"Really, truly, the same shaped head and, it has to be said, the buttocks.

"I'm giving this to him because there is no way I would be in America at all, ever on a plane, if it wasn't for him."

She told reporters she had never even watched the Oscars on TV.

But winning still left her astonished. She said: "I think I heard someone else's name.

"Suddenly I slowly heard my own. And I'mstill recovering from that moment.

"I have absolutely no idea what happened after that.

"You could tell me my dress fell down and I'd believe you."

Byrne gave Tilda one of her early TV breaks with a role in Your Cheatin' Heart.

The Cambridge graduate - whose father was lord-lieutenant of Berwickshire - spent time with the Royal Shakespeare Company before joining up with the Traverse theatre in Edinburgh.

She was in several of controversial filmmaker Derek Jarman's productions and has a taste for challenging roles. She starred in Orlando - playing a nobleman who lives through four centuries and changes sexes. …

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