It’s the biggest night on the British television calendar as Hollywood stars including Kate Winslet, Gary Oldman and Daniel Radcliffe vie for the prizes.
Over 100 shows are nominated in 27 categories after a record number of awards submissions this year, and with hits like Slow Horses, Bad Sisters, The Traitors and The White Lotus, the competition promises to be fierce.
Some of Britain’s biggest TV stars are gearing up for an evening celebrating their craft, and we’ll take a look at what you can expect from the show.
Who could win?
The leading nominees are NHS medical comedy drama It’s Gonna Hurt and police drama The Responder, both with six nods.
Both shows were created by former public servants – with This Is Going To Hurt based on a memoir written by doctor turned comedian Adam Kay, and The Responder written by former Merseyside Police Constable Tony Schumacher.
See the full list of BAFTA nominations
The lead actors in each series – Martin Freeman as demoted police inspector Chris Carson and Ben Whishaw as Adam Kay – are nominated for Best Actor.
Following the real-life theme carried over to television, actor Adeel Akhtar is nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Sherwood, a brutal crime drama inspired by true murders in a Nottinghamshire community.
Speaking about the awards, Akhtar told Sky News that he believes people respond to stories that are rooted in reality because: “By creating a TV that looks at historical injustices that have happened or current injustices that have happened simply by analyzing them and delving into [we can] work out mechanisms for what is happening and whether we could do it better.”
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Sharon Horgan’s dark comedy Bad Sisters, the royal fiction-based novel The Crown, the epic Western The English, and the spy thriller Slow Horses all have five nods each.
Comedy Daisy May Cooper Am I being unreasonable? has four nominations, as does the trio of shows that all feature in the title – Jack Rooke’s Big Boys, Pete Jackson’s Somewhere Boy and Ronan Bennett’s Top Boy receive four nominations each.
The Memorable Moment category – the only award voted by the public – includes Paddington meeting the Queen at a palace party, the Stranger Things gang rescuing Max in Kate Bush’s hit, and the final roundtable in Traitors.
The BAFTA Craft Awards were announced in April, with Adam Kay’s Game Of Thrones prequel House Of The Dragon and This Is Going To Hurt being the biggest winners of the night, taking home three awards each.
This year has been a good one for stars who haven’t competed in BAFTAs before, but that doesn’t mean we’ve never heard of these names.
There are 18 first-time nominees in the acting categories – including Cillian Murphy, Daniel Radcliffe, Sue Perkins, Siobhan McSweeney and Taron Egerton.
Three Emerging Talent nominees – Big Boy’s Jack Rooke, Mood’s Nicole Lecky and Somewhere Boy’s Pete Jackson – also racked up the most nominations.
Meanwhile, comedian Ben Elton is nominated for an award, 30 years after his last nod.
Nominated for a one-off reissue of his 80s hit Friday Night Live, he told Sky News: “It means more because I won three times in the 80s which was amazing. Then it ceased to exist in 1999 and has never been back. But my kids are alive now, it would be nice to have one to see me accept. The kids are all grown up and yet they weren’t born the last time I was here for a BAFTA.”
Who will present?
Comedians Rob Beckett and Romesh Ranganathan will host the awards, with Ranganathan himself also competing for the award.
His show The Misadventures of Romesh Ranganathan is up for Best Feature and will see him battling with Joe Lycett, Big Zuu and Martin Lewis to take home the coveted BAFTA mask award.
Speaking to Sky News ahead of the awards, Ranganathan and Beckett likened their hosting duties to being “the best man and award-winning stag”, adding “and people get nervous when the best man goes and tries. make a day out of them so we’re not like that.”
Who will perform?
In addition to the awards ceremony, there will also be an exclusive performance that evening.
Lewis Capaldi will make his first TV appearance with his new single Wish You The Best.
The Scottish star’s debut album, Divinely Uninspired To A Hellish Extent, has sold over 10 million copies worldwide and became the UK’s best-selling album of 2019 and 2020.
His performance follows a sold-out North American tour, followed by performances at the Reading and Leeds festivals and at Glastonbury.
While nominations don’t always translate to wins, at least one of the night’s award winners is guaranteed.
Historian and television presenter David Olusoga will also be honored with a BAFTA Special Award for “outstanding” television contributions during his 30-year career.
The award is one of the academy’s highest honours, with previous recipients including sportscaster John Motson, comedian Sir Lenny Henry, TV presenter Cilla Black and actor Idris Elba.
The 53-year-old Nigerian-born star has featured in a number of hits including A House Through Time,
The Black and the British: Forgotten History and Britain’s Forgotten Slaveholders. He is also the author of seven books.
Meanwhile in America
And of course, as we celebrate the best of British and international television, US TV writers strike picket lines.
Members of the Writers Guild of America are demanding a higher minimum wage, more writers per show, and less exclusivity for individual projects.
They say they suffered financially during the streaming TV boom, in part due to shorter seasons and smaller residual payments. Supported by the Writers Guild of Great Britain, no British writer will cross the picket line to work for American programs during the strike.
So, while the celebrity BAFTA TV Awards take place, many industry professionals present will be in solidarity – albeit remotely – with their American counterparts.