It was an unusual Virgin Media TV British Academy Television Awards (Bafta) this year and memorable in more ways than one…
COMEDIAN and entertainer Romesh Ranganathan was handed his first Bafta for his idiosyncratic travel show, ‘The Misadventures of Romesh Ranganathan’, last night.
The Arsenal fan and former teacher, who started out as a stand-up, won in the Features category of the awards which were broadcast on BBC One in the evening in a 90-minute show.
There were also other standout awards for artists of colour. International star Idris Elba was also presented a Special Award.
It was an awards ceremony with a difference this year – the host Richard Ayoade introduced each award and was joined for some presentations by TV stars in the studio – including Himesh Patel, star of the BBC One’s ‘The Luminaries’ and the feature, ‘Yesterday’ — and other presenters remotely.
Ranganathan, who appeared to be using a dustbin as a presentation podium and against a carboard cut-out backdrop of three key members of his production team (see below), joked at the end of his acceptance speech: “It doesn’t mean as much to me as an individual award.”
A throw-away and comic line – it probably was also expressing some disappointment that his other BBC One nominated show, ‘The Ranganation’ lost out to ‘Taskmaster’ in the Comedy Entertainment Programme section.
He did however praise the production team behind ‘The Misadventures of Romesh Ranganathan’.
“They are incredible. It’s a real fun show to do.”
In ‘The Misadventures of Romesh Ranganathan’, the comedian travels to far off places most people would studiously avoid – it’s a show that mostly revels in his discomfort and onscreen humiliation.
A theme that show director Chris Cottam and producer Morgan Roberts elaborated on afterwards in the virtual media room post the awards.
The pair paid tribute to Ranganathan’s ability to stay in the moment – despite extreme and regular provocations. Past programmes have seen him visit the Arctic, Albania and the desert.
Cottam said: “It’s really impressive for talent. He gives audiences the most authentic version of that experience. Even when he is tired and uncomfortable, he still manages to deliver the goods.”
Roberts said that Ranganathan still whinges every time they set him on a travel challenge (“Can’t I stay in a hotel?” he asks) and the pair continue to plan new programmes with him.
While there was disappointment for Guz Khan (‘Man Like Mobeen’) in the Male Performance in a Comedy Programme (MPCP), there was double delight for fellow nominee Greek-origin Jamie Demetriou for ‘Stah Lets Flats’ – his Channel 4 sitcom also won Scripted Comedy.
Along with fellow nominee in the MPCP category, Moroccan-born Youssef Kerkour (‘Home’), the three discussed how they made their way into television as outsiders in a BAFTA panel discussion last week.
They expressed mutual admiration for each other’s work and Khan said he wanted to put across the humour of everyday people in his BBC sitcom., ‘Man Like Mobeen’.
Another comedian who stole the spotlight last night was Mo Gilligan who won in the Entertainment Performance category for his Channel 4 show, ‘The Lateish Show with Mo Gilligan’.
In the media room after receiving the award from Himesh Patel, Gilligan said it was hard to take in – that he now had a Bafta.
He said he was delighted just to have been nominated and was thrilled to be in such company (see list below).
“Just three or four years ago, I was doing comedy on the circuit and I was working in retail. I have pinch myself moments.”
In his broadcast acceptance speech, he said he hoped his win would inspire others from similar backgrounds to his to get on TV.
A black South Londoner, he is another Bafta winner who honed his craft as a stand-up first before fronting his own chat show.
He said: “It also gives hope to so many people who sound like me, look like me and are from the same background.”
Naomi Ackie won the Supporting Actress category – she was a first-time nominee for her part in ‘The End of the F***ing World’ – a dark Channel 4 comedy drama.
She was shocked when receiving the award, but later reflected on her win, saying her character had issues people did not always feel kindly towards.
“She is struggling with mental illness and being a black woman, it is heavy and empathy for that is sometimes lacking.”
In the broadcast, Elba joked that when Bafta first contacted him about his award – he felt it was too early for a lifetime achievement award.
But the special Bafta he got last night was in recognition of “exceptional career and commitment to championing diversity and new talent in the industry”.
He said his East London background had played an important part in shaping his character and wanting to give people an opportunity.
“It’s just part of my inheritance and upbringing, you can’t make it without other people.”
Later he elaborated: “It’s a reach one, teach one, duty. You’ve got to look over your shoulder and give people that opportunity.”
He said he enjoyed directing and producing and would continue to act and was looking to make his successful BBC TV detective series, ‘Luther’ into a feature film.
“It’s happening. There will be a more involved storyline – international and up-scale but John Luther is always going to be John Luther.”
Responding to a question from www.asianculturevulture.com about his lowest point and savouring his Bafta, he said: “The late 1990s was tough as an actor, but the struggle got me prepared for the next stage which is where ‘The Wire’ took off.
“The rough part is necessary and character building – I wouldn’t wish the rough parts on anyone, but it makes you appreciate what you get.”
Elsewhere, Ayesha Rafaele is part of team that won the Best Single Drama Award for ‘The Left Behind’. It was made for BBC3 and is about a young man who gets into extreme right-wing politics and violence.
The BBC’s popular ‘Race Against the World’ won the Reality and Constructed Factual Category.
Two Brits of Bangladeshi origin, Emon and Jaimul Choudhury (uncle and nephew) took home the prize this year – which sees pairs of travellers given a limited amount of cash and told to find their way to destinations without smartphones.
The Choudhurys had to cross both Central and South America and were pitted against four other pairs. Planning for series Three has begun and will take into account current restrictions related to the global coronavirus pandemic.
The International Award went to ‘When they see us’ – directed by Ava DuVernay who is champion of diversity in Hollywood.
FULL LIST OF WINNERS AND NOMINEES 2020
COMEDY ENTERTAINMENT PROGRAMME
Winner: TASKMASTER Alex Horne, Andy Devonshire, Andy Cartwright, James Taylor – Avalon Television/Dave
THE GRAHAM NORTON SHOW Graham Norton, Graham Stuart, Jon Magnusson, Steve Smith – So Television/BBC One
THE LAST LEG Ben Knappett, Andrew Beint, Lisa Kirk, Cimran Shah – Open Mike Productions/Channel 4
THE RANGANATION Production Team – Zeppotron/BBC Two
Winner: UNDERCOVER: INSIDE CHINA’S DIGITAL GULAG (EXPOSURE) Robin Barnwell, David Henshaw, Guy Creasey, Gesbeen Mohammad – Hardcash Productions/ITV
GROWING UP POOR: BRITAIN’S BREADLINE KIDS (DISPATCHES) Production Team – True Vision East/Channel 4
THE HUNT FOR JIHADI JOHN Anthony Wonke, Richard Kerbaj, Paul Monaghan, Jane Root – Nutopia, Livedrop Media, HBO/Channel 4
IS LABOUR ANTI-SEMITIC? (PANORAMA) Leo Telling, John Ware, Neil Grant, Rachel Jupp – BBC/BBC One
Winner: THE END OF THE F***ING WORLD Production Team – Clerkenwell Films, Dominic Buchanan Productions/Channel 4/Netflix
THE CROWN Peter Morgan, Suzanne Mackie, Benjamin Caron, Michael Casey – Left Bank Pictures, Sony Pictures Television/Netflix
GENTLEMAN JACK Sally Wainwright, Faith Penhale, Laura Lankester, Phil Collinson – Lookout Point, HBO/BBC One
GIRI/HAJI Production Team – Sister/BBC Two/ Netflix
Winner: MO GILLIGAN The Lateish Show with Mo Gilligan – Expectation, Momo G/Channel 4
FRANKIE BOYLE Frankie Boyle’s New World Order – Zeppotron/BBC Two
GRAHAM NORTON The Graham Norton Show – So Television/BBC One
LEE MACK Would I Lie to You – Zeppotron/BBC One
Winner: STRICTLY COME DANCING Production Team – BBC Studios/BBC One
THE GREATEST DANCER Amelia Brown, Phil Harris, Nigel Hall, Louise Hutchinson – Thames, Syco Entertainment/BBC One
THE RAP GAME UK Tom O’Brien, Simon Andreae, Tom Whitrow, Susie Dark – Naked TV/BBC Three
THE VOICE UK Production Team – ITV Studios, Talpa/ITV
Winner: LEAVING NEVERLAND Production Team – Amos Pictures/Channel 4
CRIME AND PUNISHMENT Emily Lawson, Bruce Fletcher, Jemma Chisnall, Mark Raphael – 72 Films/Channel 4
DON’T F**K WITH CATS: HUNTING AN INTERNET KILLER Mark Lewis, Felicity Morris, Michael Harte, Dimitri Doganis –Raw TV/Netflix
OUR DEMENTIA CHOIR WITH VICKY MCCLURE Production Team – Curve Media/BBC One
Winner:THE MISADVENTURES OF ROMESH RANGANATHAN Emily Hudd, Morgan Roberts, Christopher Cottam – Rumpus Media/BBC Two
JOE LYCETT’S GOT YOUR BACK Production Team – Rumpus Media, My Options Were Limited/Channel 4
MORTIMER & WHITEHOUSE: GONE FISHING Bob Mortimer, Paul Whitehouse, Lisa Clark, Will Yapp – Owl Power/BBC Two
SNACKMASTERS Production Team – Optomen/Channel 4
FEMALE PERFORMANCE IN A COMEDY PROGRAMME
Winner: SIAN CLIFFORD Fleabag – Two Brothers Pictures/BBC Three
GBEMISOLA IKUMELO Famalam – BBC Studios/BBC Three
PHOEBE WALLER-BRIDGE Fleabag – Two Brothers Pictures/BBC Three
SARAH KENDALL Frayed – Merman, Guesswork Television/Sky One
Winner: WHEN THEY SEE US Ava DuVernay, Jonathan King, Jane Rosenthal, Berry Welsh- Participant Media, Tribeca Productions, Harpo Films, Array Filmworks/Netflix
EUPHORIA Sam Levinson, Ravi Nandan, Kevin Turen, Drake – The Reasonable Bunch, A24, Little Lamb, DreamCrew, Content Agency, HOT, TCDY Productions, HBO/Sky Atlantic
SUCCESSION Production Team – HBO, Project Zeus, Hyperobject Industries, Gary Sanchez Productions/Sky Atlantic
UNBELIEVABLE Susannah Grant, Sarah Timberman, Lisa Cholodenko- CBS Television Studios, Timberman-Beverly Productions, Katie Couric Media, Escapist Fare, Sage Lane Productions/Netflix
Winner: JARED HARRIS Chernobyl – Sister, The Mighty Mint, Word Games, HBO/Sky Atlantic
CALLUM TURNER The Capture – Heyday Television, NBC Universal/BBC One
STEPHEN GRAHAM The Virtues – Warp Films, Big Arty Productions/Channel 4
TAKEHIRO HIRA Giri/Haji – Sister/BBC Two/ Netflix
Winner: GLENDA JACKSON Elizabeth is Missing – STV Productions/BBC One
JODIE COMER Killing Eve – Sid Gentle Films/BBC One
SAMANTHA MORTON I Am Kirsty – Me and You Productions/Channel 4
SURANNE JONES Gentleman Jack – Lookout Point, HBO/BBC One
Winner: BLUE PLANET LIVE Production Team – BBC Studios Natural History Unit, Open University, BBC Learning/BBC One
ELECTION 2019 LIVE: THE RESULTS Production Team – ITV News, ITN/ITV
GLASTONBURY 2019 Production Team – BBC Studios/BBC Two
OPERATION LIVE Production Team – The Garden Productions/Channel 5
MALE PERFORMANCE IN A COMEDY PROGRAMME
Winner: JAMIE DEMETRIOU Stath Lets Flats – Roughcut TV/Channel 4
GUZ KHAN Man Like Mobeen – Tiger Aspect Productions, Cave Bear Productions/BBC Three
JAMIE DEMETRIOU Stath Lets Flats – Roughcut TV/Channel 4
NCUTI GATWA Sex Education – Eleven Film/Netflix
YOUSSEF KERKOUR Home – Jantaculum, Channel X/Channel 4
Winner: CHERNOBYL Production Team – Sister, The Mighty Mint, Word Games, HBO/Sky Atlantic
A CONFESSION Jeff Pope, Paul Andrew Williams, Tom Dunbar, Johnny Capps – ITV Studios, Urban Myth Films/ITV
THE VICTIM Rob Williams, Niall MacCormick, Sarah Brown, Jenny Frayn – STV Productions/BBC One
THE VIRTUES Shane Meadows, Jack Thorne, Mark Herbert, Nickie Sault – Warp Films, Big Arty Productions/Channel 4
Winner: HONG KONG PROTESTS Production Team – Sky News/Sky News
ITV NEWS AT TEN: ELECTION RESULTS Production Team – ITV News, ITN/ITV
PRINCE ANDREW & THE EPSTEIN SCANDAL (NEWSNIGHT) Production Team – BBC News/BBC Two
VICTORIA DERBYSHIRE: MEN WHO LOST LOVED ONES TO KNIFE CRIME Production Team– BBC News/BBC Two
REALITY & CONSTRUCTED FACTUAL
Winner:RACE ACROSS THE WORLD Production Team – Studio Lambert/BBC Two
CELEBRITY GOGGLEBOX Tania Alexander, Leon Campbell, Stephen Lambert, Chris Hooker – Studio Lambert/Channel 4
HARRY’S HEROES: THE FULL ENGLISH Production Team – Talkback/ITV
RUPAUL’S DRAG RACE UK Production Team – World of Wonder Productions/BBC Three
Winner STATH LETS FLATS Jamie Demetriou, Tom Kingsley, Seb Barwell, Ash Atalla – Roughcut TV/Channel 4
CATASTROPHE Sharon Horgan, Rob Delaney, Jim O’Hanlon, Toby Welch – Avalon Television, Birdbath, Merman/Channel 4
DERRY GIRLS Lisa McGee, Liz Lewin, Caroline Leddy, Michael Lennox – Hat Trick Productions/Channel 4
FLEABAG Production Team – Two Brothers Pictures/BBC Three
SHORT FORM PROGRAMME
Winner: BRAIN IN GEAR Gbemisola Ikumelo, Fergal Costello, Inez Gordon – BBC Studios/BBC iPlayer
ANYWHERE BUT WESTMINSTER John Domokos, John Harris – The Guardian/The Guardian
SOON GONE: A WINDRUSH CHRONICLE Roy Williams, Tinge Krishnan, Carol Harding – Douglas Road Productions, The Young Vic/BBC Four
TONI_WITH_AN_I (BORN DIGITAL: FIRST CUTS) Marco Alessi, Ksenia Harwood, Mary Antony – Plimsoll Productions, BFI/BBC Four
Winner: THE LAST SURVIVORS Arthur Cary, Morgan Matthews, Katherine Anstey, Joby Gee – Minnow Films/BBC Two
THE ABUSED Barbie MacLaurin, Napoleon Stratogiannakis, Malcolm Brinkworth, Benedict Adams- Brinkworth Productions/Channel 5
DAVID HAREWOOD: PSYCHOSIS AND ME Emma Hindley, Wendie Ottewill, Olivia Isaacs, David Harewood – Films of Record, Open University/BBC Two
THE FAMILY SECRET Anna Hall, Sally Ogden, Luke Rothery, Brian Woods – True Vision Yorkshire/Channel 4
Winner: THE LEFT BEHIND Alan Harris, Joseph Bullman, Aysha Rafaele, Tracie Simpson – BBC Studios/BBC Three
BREXIT: THE UNCIVIL WAR Production Team – House Productions, Baffin Media/Channel 4
ELIZABETH IS MISSING Andrea Gibb, Aisling Walsh, Sarah Brown, Chrissy Skinns – STV Productions/BBC One
RESPONSIBLE CHILD Production Team – Kudos, 72 Films/BBC Two
SOAP & CONTINUING DRAMA
Winner: EMMERDALE Production Team – ITV Studios/ITV
CASUALTY Production Team – BBC Studios/BBC One
CORONATION STREET Production Team – ITV Studios/ITV
HOLBY CITY Production Team – BBC Studios/BBC One
Winner: YORKSHIRE RIPPER FILES: A VERY BRITISH CRIME STORY Liza Williams, Jasmine Macnabb, Nancy Bornat, Leanne Klein – Wall to Wall Media/BBC Four
8 DAYS: TO THE MOON AND BACK Production Team – BBC Studios, PBS/BBC Two
SEVEN WORLDS, ONE PLANET Production Team – BBC Studios Natural History Unit, BBC America, Tencent Penguin Pictures, ZDF, France Télévisions, CCTV9/BBC One
THATCHER: A VERY BRITISH REVOLUTION Production Team – BBC Studios: The Documentary Unit/BBC Two
Winner 2019 RUGBY WORLD CUP FINAL: ENGLAND V SOUTH AFRICA Phil Heslop, David Francis, Mark Demuth, Paul McNamara – ITV Sport/ITV
ICC CRICKET WORLD CUP FINAL Production Team – Sky Sports, Sunset+Vine, ICC TV/Sky Sports Cricket
FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP 2019 SEMI-FINAL: ENGLAND V USA Frank Callaghan, Stu Hutchison, Pete Burton, Rebekah Kipps – Input Media/BBC One
WIMBLEDON 2019 MEN’S FINAL Production Team – BBC Sport, Wimbledon Broadcast Services/BBC One
Winner: WILL SHARPE Giri/Haji – Sister/BBC Two/ Netflix
JOE ABSOLOM A Confession – ITV Studios, Urban Myth Films/ITV
JOSH O’CONNOR The Crown – Left Bank Pictures, Sony Pictures Television/Netflix
STELLAN SKARSGARD Chernobyl – Sister, The Mighty Mint, Word Games, HBO/Sky Atlantic
Winner: NAOMI ACKIE The End of the F***ing World – Clerkenwell Films, Dominic Buchanan Productions/Channel 4/Netflix
HELEN BEHAN The Virtues Warp Films, Big Arty Productions/Channel 4
HELENA BONHAM CARTER The Crown – Left Bank Pictures, Sony Pictures/Netflix
JASMINE JOBSON Top Boy – Cowboy Films, Easter Partisan Films, DreamCrew, SpringHill Entertainment/Netflix
VIRGIN MEDIA’S MUST-SEE MOMENT (voted for by the public)
Winner GAVIN AND STACEY Nessa Proposes to Smithy – Fulwell 73, Tidy Productions and Baby Cow/BBC One
CORONATION STREET The Death of Sinead Osbourne – ITV Studios/ITV
FLEABAG Confessional scene – Two Brothers Pictures/BBC Three
GAME OF THRONES Arya Kills the Night King – Bighead, Littlehead, 360 Television, Startling Television, HBO/Sky Atlantic
LINE OF DUTY John Corbett’s Death – World Productions/BBC One
LOVE ISLAND Michael recouples after Casa Amor – ITV Studios, Motion Content Group/ ITV2