Irish actor and comedian Pat Shortt has jointly won the Best Actor category at the Evening Standard British Film Awards for his performance in 'Garage'.

In an unusual move the award was given to two actors with Michael Sheen also being recognised for his performance in 'Frost/Nixon'.

Sheen's portrayal of broadcaster David Frost as he tangles with the slippery Richard Nixon could not be separated from Shortt's performance as a lonely pump attendant in 'Garage'.

'Hunger', an exploration of Irish hunger striker Bobby Sands, won the coveted Best Film award. The film by Steve McQueen dramatises the controversial events that took place at the Maze prison in the 1980s.

Tilda Swinton pipped Kate Winslet to the award for Best Actress for her moving performance as Julia in Erick Zonca's kidnapping drama 'Julia'. Winslet has recently enjoyed great success winning awards at the Golden Globes and the Screen Actor's Guild for her portrayal as a former Nazi concentration camp guard in 'The Reader'.

Danny Boyle ('Slumdog Millionaire') was beaten to the Best Director award by Stephen Daldry with 'The Reader'.

Director Joanna Hogg won the Most Promising Newcomer award for her film 'Unrelated' and veteran film maker Mike Leigh scooped the Alexander Walker Special Award for his contribution to British Film and for nurturing new talent.