BAFTA to Honor Joan Bakewell, Nicola Shindler & Emma Thomas


The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has announced the recipients of the BAFTA Television Fellowship, BAFTA Television Special Award and BAFTA Television Craft Special Award.

Broadcaster and journalist Joan Bakewell will be honored with the BAFTA Television Fellowship in recognition of her ongoing, illustrious 50-year career in the industry. Over the decades, she’s presented Late Night Line-Up (1965-72) and Heart of the Matter (1988–2000), and served as BBC Television Art’s correspondent (1981-87). She also wrote and presented a four-part series for the BBC called Taboo (2001). Bakewell currently presents Portrait Artist of the Year for Sky Arts.

Nicola Shindler will be presented with the BAFTA Television Special Award for her outstanding contribution to the industry. In 1998, Shindler founded the award-winning RED Production company, which counts among its titles Queer as Folk (1999-2000), Clocking Off (2000-2003), Happy Valley (2014-2016), Burn It (2003) and Harlan Coben’s Safe (2018), as well as new series Trust Me and Years and Years.

Both Bakewell and Shindler will be recognized at the Virgin Media British Academy Television Awards on Sunday, May 12.

Bakewell said: “I’m thrilled to see so many women nominated this year and delighted to share this great BAFTA occasion with them. I have been a broadcaster for many decades now and seen major changes along the way, not least the advancement of women both on the screen and in many roles behind it.”

Shindler said: “I am incredibly honored to be the recipient of the BAFTA Television Special Award.  When I set up RED Production Company 20 years ago, my goal was to make drama that I wanted to watch and that always challenged the audience as well as entertained. It hasn’t been easy, but I am proud of the shows we make at RED and how hard we work. I have an amazing team, and have worked with a number of the most incredible people, who have made coming into work each day a joy. And I’m not done! I continue to be excited by new ideas every day, and I can’t wait to see what the next 20 years bring.”

Emma Thomas will be recognized with a special award at the BAFTA Television Craft Awards on Sunday, April 28, for her services in script supervision. Thomas has acted as a script supervisor on such programs as Goodnight Sweetheart (1993-95), Birds of a Feather (1989-98), Benidorm (2007), Bad Education (2012), Luther (2010-11) and The Bill (2008). She’s also worked on international series The Bastard Executioner (2015), Tyrant (2016) and Guerrilla (2017).

Thomas said: “I have had the privilege to work with a number of talented professionals on a huge variety of programming and films throughout my career, and have been at the forefront of this ever-changing industry. It’s a privilege to have been awarded the prestigious British Academy Television Craft Special Award in a year where so many women have been recognized by BAFTA in front of and behind the screen.”

Amanda Berry, CEO of BAFTA, added: “This year, BAFTA is thrilled to recognize three enormously successful women in the British Television industry. In their own fields, their contribution to some of the most talked-about television programs is truly outstanding. We are delighted to honor their exceptional achievements.”