Over all-white winners, the Bafta Awards have drawn criticism

a group shot of the Bafta winners

All of the winners at the Bafta Awards' film ceremony on Sunday were white, which has drawn criticism for the organization.

People from ethnic minorities made up nearly 40% of the acting shortlist spots for the prestigious British event, which featured a diverse group of nominees.

However, the 49 winners in all categories were white, so this did not result in any victories.

All 20 of the acting nominees were white, which sparked outrage and led to reforms three years later.

Bafta's lead actress and actor winners Cate Blanchett and Austin Butler
Austin Butler and Cate Blanchett took home the best lead actor and actress awards at the Baftas.

The results from Sunday were "quite depressing," according to Marcus Ryder, director of consultancy at the Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity, and they demonstrated that "no substantial change" had occurred over the previous ten years.

Lenny Henry made headlines at the TV Baftas in 2013 ten years prior when he declared it to be "All white on the night," the speaker recalled.

And regrettably, in spite of a significant overhaul, on which I and many other industry professionals were consulted and which led to 120 changes to the Bafta award procedures, 1,000 new members from under-represented groups, etc., there has been little to no change. ".

He claimed that the Baftas are "just the tip of the iceberg" of a larger film industry that "suffers from systemic racism," and that the focus should not be on such events.

After watching the ceremony and viewing the group photo of the winners, film and TV critic and Bafta short film jury member Ashanti Omkar said she felt "quite devastated.".

"Alison Hammond was the only member of the global majority in it, and while she wasn't a winner, she worked at the event like many others who added color to the red carpet, played music, and presented awards," she said. "That seemed backwards; it seemed like these were only token improvements rather than substantial ones. ".

The winners all merited recognition, but Omkar expressed concern that, in spite of recent advancements, people might be reverting to "old voting practices.".

She admitted to being "heartbroken" and said, "This is what I was feeling.". "I was really in shock. ".

In The Guardian, author and critic Leila Latif observed that there was a "creeping discomfort that the awards were benefiting from the work and presence of many people of color without ever handing them a statuette" on the evening in question.

By the end of the evening, as it gradually dawned on everyone that every winner was white, she remarked, "you could practically feel the Bafta team's heads sink into their hands as they braced for yet another social media storm.".

Although it noted the reforms implemented in 2020, Bafta declined to comment on the lack of diversity among its winners. They comprised increasing the number of voters, particularly from underrepresented groups, and requiring voters to watch each film on the long list in the category they are voting in.

Before the ceremony, the organization's chairman, Krishnendu Majumdar, told the New York Times that he wants to "level the playing field," but that awards "have to be on merit.".

The 2020 reforms were "not a perfect full stop," according to Jane Millichip, chief executive of Bafta, who also stated that the process of reviewing the system would be ongoing and constant.

During the years 2021 and 2022, half of the acting winners were non-white.

The impact of Bafta's changes won't be fully understood for five or six years, according to Dr. Clive Nwonka, who oversaw a study into racial inequality in the UK film industry in 2021.

With seven awards this year, the German-language World War One epic All Quiet On The Western Front was the big winner, and Cate Blanchett and Austin Butler won the top acting honors.

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