With a total of 12 honors, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is just trailing Cold Mountain's by one nod, but like the first two films in director Peter Jackson's trilogy, the majority of its BAFTA nominations are in technical categories.
Following Cold Mountain and The Return of the King in the total nominations race are Girl With a Pearl Earring with ten, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World and Lost in Translation with eight and Big Fish with seven.
Cold Mountain star Nicole Kidman, however, failed to get a BAFTA nod. Nominees for best actress include Anne Reid (The Mother); Naomi Watts (21 Grams); Uma Thurman (Kill Bill Vol. 1); and a double nomination for Scarlett Johansson for Lost in Translation and Girl with a Pearl Earring.
Sean Penn also received two best actor nominations for Mystic River and 21 Grams. Also nominated were Benicio del Toro (21 Grams); Bill Murray (Lost in Translation); Johnny Depp (Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl); and Jude Law (Cold Mountain).
The supporting actress category includes Renee Zellweger (Cold Mountain); Holly Hunter (Thirteen); Emma Thompson (Love Actually); Judy Parfitt ( Girl with a Pearl Earring) and Laura Linney (Mystic River).
In the supporting actor category, Tim Robbins (Mystic River) goes up against Bill Nighy for Love Actually; Ian McKellen for The Return of the King; Albert Finney for Big Fish; and a bespectacled Paul Bettany for Master and Commander.
The BAFTAs use to take place after the Academy Awards but organizers moved up the date to ensure that a steady bevy of Hollywood celebs would attend the London gala to give their films broader exposure overseas. The BAFTA winners will be announced Feb. 15--two weeks before the Oscars.