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BAFTA postpones its awards ceremony following Oscars date change

Actress Olivia Colman
Olivia Colman with her BAFTA award for best actress in 2019.
(Associated Press)

Next year’s British Academy Film Awards have been postponed by two months, organizers said Tuesday. The move follows a decision by Hollywood to shift the 2021 Oscars from February to April because of the coronavirus crisis.

The British academy said the BAFTA ceremony would be held on April 11, 2021, rather than the previously announced Feb. 14. The academy has also changed eligibility rules so that films whose theatrical releases have been curtailed or switched to online-only releases will be eligible for consideration.

Film committee Chair Marc Samuelson said the new date — two weeks before the 2021 Oscars — would “give all films the best possible chance to be released and considered properly.”

Movie theaters in Britain have been closed since March 20 as part of a nationwide lockdown to slow the spread of COVID-19.

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The date of the 2022 BAFTA awards is being reviewed.

On Monday, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and ABC Television Network announced that the 93rd Academy Awards would now be held April 25, 2021, eight weeks later than planned, because of the pandemic’s effects on the movie industry. It’s the fourth postponement in Oscars history.

The British awards ceremony is usually held a week or two before the Oscars and have become an important bellwether.


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