Low-key is the phrase which comes to mind when attending the BAFTA TV Craft Awards on April 23, especially when compared to the BAFTA Film Awards several months back. Low-key, undoubtedly more relaxed but yet, just as classy. It’s also looser, so to speak.
Here in the press poom, where there are 21 of us compared to 50 plus at the film awards, there are their sandwiches, crisps (or chips to Americans) and chocolate to gorge on. And there are buckets full of bottles of beer, as well as a very healthy flow of red and white wine … seemingly on tap. That may not mean all that much but at the film ceremony, we were fed only cookies, tea and coffee. It’s a much nicer-looking refreshment table this time, which is quite welcome given that it promises to be a long night. Subsequently, there’s a cheery smattering of chatter in the press room and even an cheerier smatter coming from the nominees lounge.
The lack of pure star-power means a decrease in security. The BAFTA Film Awards at the Royal Albert Hall were at one point on lock-down as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrived. Here, however, at the more relaxed venue of The Brewery in east central London, security are fewer in numbers and, to put it bluntly, friendlier in approach.
That does not mean there isn’t a certain aura around The Brewery, however, with nominees and attendees, presenters and press and staff alike adorning their glad rags. And, besides, this is still the BAFTAs and still an awards ceremony; they are famous faces flecked around the facility, of course.
Of the nominees in these categories, a few names leap out: Stephen Daldry and Susanne Bier, both up for Best Director: Fiction for helming the hit show “The Crown” and “The Night Manager,” respectively. Peter Morgan, of “The Queen” fame, is also nominated for “The Crown,” this time for Best Writing: Drama, while Oscar-nominee and BAFTA-winner (both for “Philomena”) Steve Coogan is nominated for Best Writing: Comedy for “Alan Partridge’s Scissored Isle.”
There are also plenty of other big shows nominated tonight ranging from “Sherlock” to “Planet Earth II” to “The Hollow Crown” and even the BBC’s coverage of Wimbledon 2016. There’s still plenty of meat to chew on, just not as rich as the Film BAFTAs, perhaps.
The Writing and Directing categories are probably the biggest ones tonight, while the rest of the categories are made up from areas such as editing, production design, sound, cinematography, music, title designs and more. The big hitting categories, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Television Series and all their branches, are being saved for BAFTA TV’s second awards ceremony (the main one) on May 14.