February 28, 2011 / 4:10 AM / 6 years ago

Tom Hooper wins director Oscar for "King's Speech"

2 Min Read

<p>British director Tom Hooper accepts the Oscar for best director for his film "The King's Speech" during the 83rd Academy Awards in Hollywood, California, February 27, 2011.Gary Hershorn</p>

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - British filmmaker Tom Hooper on Sunday, won the Academy Award for directing "The King's Speech," and he said it might not have happened without a little help from his mom.

Hooper said his mother, Meredith, went to see a play reading in 2007 about a speech therapist who helped the future King George VI of England overcome a crippling stammer.

When she got home, Hooper's mother, who is Australian as the speech therapist in the play was, told Hooper that she may have found his next film project. That play became "The King's Speech."

"With this tonight, I honor you, and the moral of the story is: Listen to your mother," Hooper said.

Hooper's victory was one of four wins for "The King's Speech," including the all-important best picture. It had been the frontrunner entering the night's festivities.

David Seidler won for his writing on the movie, and Colin Firth, who played the king, won for best actor.

Geoffrey Rush played the Australian speech therapist, and on stage Hooper jokingly paid tribute to both his leading men.

"Thank you to my wonderful actors, the triangle of man-love which is Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush and me," Hooper said.

Even though Hooper recently won the bellwether prize from the Directors Guild of America, the Oscar race was seen as a toss-up with David Fincher of "The Social Network." But some of the excitement was taken out of the battle after "Inception" director Christopher Nolan failed to secure a nomination.

"The King's Speech" was Hooper's third feature film. He made his name in the United States directing the HBO miniseries "John Adams."

Besides Fincher, the other nominees were Darren Aronofsky for "Black Swan," David O. Russell for "The Fighter" and previous winners Joel and Ethan Coen for "True Grit."

Additional reporting by Dean Goodman; Editing by Sandra Maler

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