The British Academy has announced quite 120 significant and wide-ranging changes across its voting, membership and campaigning process aimed toward addressing the shortage of diversity within the BAFTA Awards.
Hailed as a “watershed moment for BAFTA” by chair Krishnendu Majumdar, the changes were unveiled Thursday following the conclusion of the primary phase of a comprehensive, eye-opening and, at times, painful seven-month internal and external review, launched in response to the controversy that erupted following the 2020 BAFTA Film nominations in January when all-white nominees made up the highest acting categories and therefore the director category did not include one female filmmaker.
The changes — considered the most important BAFTA has ever implemented — includes the introduction of a replacement longlist round in voting to realize greater diversity; increasing the nominations and making rule changes to many categories, including acting and directing; making film viewing compulsory for all voters in one round of voting; a big expansion of BAFTA’s voting members that targets those from under-represented groups; and pushing screenings onto a replacement digital platform.
“This may be a watershed moment for BAFTA. The Academy has never opened itself up like this before,” said Majumdar, who led the review alongside film committee chair Marc Samuelson and a specially formed steering group.