Violent thriller ‘No Country’ dominates Oscars, Europeans score high

HOLLYWOOD, Feb 24, 2008 (AFP) – Violent thriller “No Country for Old Men” won the best picture Oscar at the 80th Academy Awards here Sunday as European stars scored a clean sweep in the acting honors in an historic Hollywood night. The Golden Globes were canceled after stars vowed to boycott the event in support of striking writers and fears of a similar no-show had plagued the Oscars until the strike was called off earlier this month. “No Country for Old Men” emerged as the biggest winner of the evening, scooping four Oscars including best director for brothers Joel and Ethan Coen, best adapted screenplay and best supporting actor for Javier Bardem.

The film, a bleak and bloody drama about a drug deal that goes wrong and its murderous aftermath, was the overwhelming pre-Oscars favorite.

“Ethan and I have been making stories with movie cameras since we were kids … what we do now doesn’t feel that much different than what we were doing,” Joel Coen said after collecting the best director award.

“We’re very thankful to all of you out there for letting us continue to play in our corner of the sandbox.”

The evening’s acting awards were dominated by European talent, with France’s Marion Cotillard winning best actress