This might have been a year of unprecedented disruption and upheaval, but on Friday 31 July, the annual BAFTA TV awards ceremony pulled out all the stops and went ahead regardless — albeit in a novel socially-distanced form.
We were thrilled to see so many great programme-makers, including many Directors UK members, receive recognition for their work.
The drama categories at this year’s BAFTAs showcased an explosion of directing talent. The End of the F***ing World — directed by Directors UK member Lucy Forbes and Destiny Ekaragha — took home the award for Drama Series, while the award for Single Drama was won by The Left Behind, directed by Joseph Bullman. Chernobyl, helmed by Directors UK member Johan Renck, had the largest awards haul of the evening, including the BAFTA for Mini Series. In Soap and Continuing Drama, the production team of Emmerdale — including many brilliant directors — emerged victorious.
Work from our members also lit up TV comedy this year, as the award for Comedy Entertainment was presented to Taskmaster, directed by Directors UK member Andy Devonshire, and the award for Scripted Comedy went to Stath Lets Flats, directed by member Tom Kingsley.
The factual categories were no less a celebration of fantastic work: Leaving Neverland, by member Dan Reed, won in the Factual Series category, while The Last Survivors, directed by fellow member Arthur Cary, picked up the award for Single Doc. Meanwhile, Directors UK member Liza Williams saw her documentary The Yorkshire Ripper Files: A Very British Crime Story win for Specialist Factual. Elsewhere, Race Across the World — by a production team including fantastic Directors UK members — was the winner in Reality and Constructed Factual category. Undercover: Inside China’s Digital Gulag, directed by Robin Barwell, won the award for Current Affairs programme.
It was another great year for Entertainment TV, with outstanding TV moments recognised across the board. Strictly Come Dancing, directed by member Nikki Parsons, won for Entertainment Programme. Meanwhile, the excellent production teams of The Misadventures of Romesh Ranganathan and Blue Planet Live saw their work recognised in the Features and Live Event categories respectively.
Finally, Ava DuVernay’s When They See Us took home the International award, and Brain in Gear, directed by Fergus Costello and Gbemisola Ikumelo, won the award for Best Short Form programme.
These awards were announced just one week after the BAFTA TV Craft Awards, which also provided terrific news for Directors UK Members: Johan Renck won the award for Best Director: Fiction for Chernobyl, Janet Fraser-Cook was awarded Best Director: Multi-Camera for Glastonbury 2019, and Arthur Cary was awarded Best Director: Factual for The Last Survivors.
Congratulations to all of this year’s fantastic winners and nominees, a true testament to the quality of programme-making talent in the UK. You can read a full list of winners and nominees here.