London: Indian actor Adarsh Gourav has bagged the leading actor BAFTA nod for his performance in the Netflix film "The White Tiger", the British Academy announced on Tuesday.
The movie, an adaptation of Aravind Adiga's Booker Prize winning novel of the same name, marks the first lead role of Gourav, known for his appearance in "My Name is Khan", "Mom" and Netflix series "Leila".
The English language film is directed by Ramin Bahrani.
Bahrani, known for "Fahrenheit 451" and "99 Homes", has also received a nomination in the adapted screenplay category.
Gourav's Balram is the Netflix movie's protagonist, who works as a driver for Ashok, a wealthy businessman, played by Rajkummar Rao.
From being ridiculed by his employers for his underprivileged background and forcing him to take the fall for a crime he didn't commit, the film charts his journey to becoming a successful entrepreneur.
"This is so unexpected and overwhelming. This is unbelievable. It is surreal," Gourav told PTI when asked to comment on the nomination.
The film also stars Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Mahesh Manjrekar and Vijay Maurya.
Chopra Jonas took to Twitter to celebrate her co-star's BAFTA nod.
"What a proud moment for Indian with 2 BAFTA nominations for an all Indian star cast!! Ecstatic for you @_GouravAdarsh, you are so deserving of this recognition, and congratulations #RaminBahrani, so well deserved," she wrote.
The actor, who also served as an executive producer on the film, said she is "extremely proud" to be associated with "The White Tiger".
Gourav will compete against award season favourites Riz Ahmed for "Sound Of Metal" and late Chadwick Boseman for "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" and Mads Mikkelsen for the Danish language film "Another Round".
Veteran British actor Anthony Hopkins ("The Father") and French actor Tahar Rahim ("The Mauritanian" are also part of the line-up.
"Nomadland" and "Rocks", directed by Sarah Gavron, dominated the BAFTAs with seven nominations each.
In the leading actress category, "The Crown" star Vanessa Kirby has been nominated for her film "Pieces Of A Woman" and Oscar winner Frances McDormand has landed a nod for the critically acclaimed "Nomadland", directed by Chloe Zhao.
Bukky Bakray ("Rocks"), Radha Blank ("The Forty-Year-Old Version"), Wunmi Mosaku ("His House") and Alfre Woodard ("Clemency") are the other names to be nominated in the category.
Like Bahrani, Zhao has also secured a nomination in the best adapted screenplay BAFTA category for "Nomadland". Other nominees are Moira Buffini for "The Dig"; Christopher Hampton and Florian Zeller for "The Father", and Rory Haines, Sohrab Noshirvani, and MB Traven for "The Mauritanian".
"Nomadland", "The Father", "Promising Young Woman", "The Mauritanian", and "The Trial of the Chicago 7" are the best film nominees.
Both Zhao and Gavron have landed nods in the best director segment, alongside Thomas Vinterberg for Danish film "Another Round", Shannon Murphy for "Babyteeth", Jasmila Zbanic for Bosnian film "Quo Vadis, Aida?", and Lee Isaac Chung for Korean-English language feature "Minari".
The nominees in the supporting actor category are Daniel Kaluuya ("Judas And The Black Messiah"), Barry Keoghan ("Calm With Horses"), child actor Alan Kim ("Minari"), Leslie Odom Jr ("One Night In Miami..."), Clarke Peters ("Da 5 Bloods"), and Paul Raci ("Sound Of Metal").
Veteran South Korean actor Yuh-Jung Youn ("Minari"), Niamh Algar ("Calm With Horses"), Kosar Ali ("Rocks"), Maria Bakalova ("Borat Subsequent Moviefilm"), Dominique Fishback ("Judas And The Black Messiah"), and Ashley Madekwe ("County Lines") have received the best supporting actress nods.
This appears to be a welcome change after the British Academy was last year sharply criticised for the lack of representation and diversity in the top acting categories and the director segment did not include a single female filmmaker.
Competing for the BAFTA of outstanding British film are: "Calm With Horses", "The Dig", "The Father", "His House", "Limbo", "The Mauritanian", another Ahmed-starrer "Mogul Mowgli", "Promising Young Woman", "Rocks", and "Saint Maud".
The features to be nominated in the film not in the English language segment are "Another Round", Russian film "Dear Comrades!", French movie "Les Miserables", "Minari", and "Quo Vadis, Aida?" Tobias Lindholm and Thomas Vinterberg for "Another Round"; the late Jack Fincher for "Mank"; "The Crown" actor Emerald Fennell for her directorial debut "Promising Young Woman"; Theresa Ikoko and Claire Wilson for "Rocks", and Aaron Sorkin for "The Trial Of The Chicago 7" have secured nominations in the original screenplay segment.
In the visual effects category, "Greyhound", "The Midnight Sky", "Mulan", "The One And Only Ivan", and "Tenet" have earned the nominations.
"Collective", "David Attenborough: A Life On Our Planet", "The Dissident", "My Octopus Teacher", and "The Social Dilemma" are part of the documentary films list.
Nominees in the animated film category are "Onward", "Soul", and "Wolfwalkers".
The BAFTA awards ceremony will be held on April 11.