Monday, April 23, 2007

Why is TV writing merely a craft for BAFTA?

Here's something I've never understood. Every year the British Academy of Film and Television Arts hands out a bunch of awards for film [the UK's version of the Oscars] and television [effectively Britain's Emmys]. At the film awards ceremony, both the winners and nominees in writing and direction categories are considered worthy of being included in the televised event. But the same status doesn't seem to be accorded the corresponding categories for the TV awards.

The Broadcast website is today reporting the winners of the BAFTA Craft Awards for TV. The ubiquitous Peter Morgan won best writing for his drama Longford, while Edmund Coulthard took the award for best direction on the drama Soundproof. Why are these awards considered a craft on TV, yet so feted when it comes to film? I know the director is considered a more powerful figure in film than in television, but this still seems iniquitous to me.

It's even more baffling to me that the work of writers is recognised as a craft, rather than something more important. Without a script from which to work, there would be no TV drama. I know there's the Dennis Potter award for an outstanding writer at the televised BAFTA TV ceremony, but that's about a body of work, isn't it? Anyway, consider me perplexed. Not much of an achievement, in truth, but there it is.

1 comment:

Robin Kelly said...

I believe those particular awards were moved to the craft side not very long ago as as a request by the broadcaster as the TV audience only care about the stars and not who put the words into the stars' mouths.