Saturday’s tea party by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts turned into quite a star-studded affair. Laura Dern, a supporting actress nominee for “Marriage Story,” strode down the corridor on her way to the event. En route, she spotted Ted Danson of “The Good Place” and Mary Steenburgen of “On Becoming a God in Central Florida.”
“The godfather of my children,” Dern said, greeting Danson with enthusiasm and a hug.
Just outside the ballroom, 12-year-old Roman Griffin Davis of “Jojo Rabbit,” this year’s youngest Golden Globes contender for best actor, met one of his rivals for the award. That would be 007 himself, Daniel Craig, a best actor nominee for the film “Knives Out.”
Not far away, Golden Globes nominees Beanie Feldstein of “Booksmart,” Ben Platt of “The Politician,” and a few others gathered. “My gratitude knows no bounds,” Feldstein said of her best actress nod, after which a modest Platt, who’s up for best actor, said he was just excited for Feldstein.
Held at the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, the annual affair hosted by BAFTA Los Angeles celebrates L.A.’s awards season and often attracts Hollywood’s A-list.
Inside the ballroom, Saoirse Ronan poured herself a cup of tea. The best actress nominee for “Little Women” then proceeded to mingle with BAFTA members, VIP guests and the many other stars who could be spotted everywhere you looked.
Leonardo DiCaprio chatted with Adam Driver, both of them up for best acting honors — DiCaprio in the comedy category for “Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood” and Driver in the drama realm for “Marriage Story.”
Keegan-Michael Key of “Dolemite Is My Name,” a best musical or comedy nominee, and wife Elisa Key spent time talking with “Jojo Rabbit” director Taika Waititi.
Sacha Baron Cohen, a best actor nominee in a limited series or TV film, could be seen mingling with filmmaker Noah Baumbach, a best screenplay nominee. Alongside them were Cohen’s wife, Isla Fisher, and Ted Sarandos, chief content officer of Netflix, the streaming service that amassed a staggering 34 Golden Globes nominations, including for Cohen’s “The Spy” and Baumbach’s “Marriage Story.”
“I’m really proud of our diversity of programming,” Sarandos said. “In film, we have both dramas and comedies, both period and contemporary, and on the television side, we cut across every genre. We’re proud for the talent, proud for all the people who do it.”
Looking glamorous in her Lanvin cocktail frock, best actress nominee Cynthia Erivo talked of the challenges of playing “Harriet,” saying very little reference material exists. There were no films or recordings of the real-life Harriet Tubman, just a few photos of the heroine of the Underground Railroad, mostly taken when Tubman was in her 40s.
Dean-Charles Chapman of “1917,” a best picture nominee, talked of his research, discovering notes written by his great-great-grandfather in the book, “The Western Front Diaries,” in which Chapman’s relative detailed his experiences as a soldier fighting in World War I, having been shot and surviving. “If I hadn’t done ‘1917,’ I probably would have never found this out,” Chapman said.
Through the afternoon, anyone with an appetite could choose from an abundance of tea sandwiches, scones and other pastries. But guests mostly mingled. Zhao Shuzhen of “The Farewell,” nominated in the foreign language category, socialized with the help of an interpreter, as did Han Jin Won, nominated as a co-writer of “Parasite.”
Also in the mix were nominees including Quentin Tarantino (“Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood”), Jonathan Pryce (“The Two Popes”), Taron Egerton (“Rocketman”), Awkwafina (“The Farewell”), Antonio Banderas (“Pain and Glory”), Bong Joon Ho (“Parasite”), Jared Harris (“Chernobyl”), Jodie Comer (“Killing Eve”), Brian Cox (“Succession”), Tobias Menzies (“The Crown”), Billy Porter (“Pose”), Kaitlyn Dever (“Unbelievable”), Joey King (“The Act”) and Patricia Arquette (“The Act”).
Presented by American Airlines, BBC America and Jaguar Land Rover, the BAFTA tea party supports the organization’s Access for All campaign, which creates career pathways in the entertainment industry for talented individuals from all backgrounds.
“We’re here to celebrate in our own British way the extraordinary artists who have brought their astonishing talent to the screens this past year,” said Kathryn Busby, chair of the BAFTA L.A. board, from the podium during the affair.
Added Matthew Wiseman, the organization’s chief executive officer: “This is a weekend of serious celebration. For those heading to the Golden Globes, we will be proudly cheering you on.”