The British Academy of Film and Television Arts Los Angeles (BAFTA Los Angeles) has announced that Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo, Emma Watson, Mike Leigh and Dame Judi Dench are among the first honorees of this year”s Jaguar Britannia Awards ceremony. Each year, BAFTA Los Angeles honors “individuals who have dedicated their careers to advancing the art forms of the moving image in the U.S., U.K. and beyond.”
Hosted by Rob Brydon (“The Trip to Italy”), who returns for his second consecutive year, the award ceremony will take place on Oct. 30, 2014 and air on BBC America the evening of Sunday, Nov. 2. Folks might remember last year's broadcast, when Sacha Baron Cohen caused a stir after pushing a wheelchair-bound old lady off stage as he accepted the Charlie Chaplin Award for Excellence in Comedy:
Since 1989, when James Bond producer Albert “Cubby” Broccoli earned the first Britannia award, BAFTA Los Angeles has bestowed name talent with its accolade and kicked off an awards season leading up to the BAFTAs, this year set for Sunday, Feb. 8, 2015. Recent Britannia award winners include George Clooney, Kathryn Bigelow, Matt Stone & Trey Parker, Quentin Tarantino, Christopher Nolan, and Tilda Swinton.
“There is a long and prolific history of collaboration between the entertainment industries of the United States and United Kingdom, and the BAFTA Los Angeles Britannia Awards are a heartfelt celebration of this fruitful relationship” said BAFTA Los Angeles Chairman Nigel Daly OBE in the announcement's press release. Britannia Award Co-Chairs Bumble Ward and Deborah Kolar added, “In an era defined by nearly unlimited content, it is more important than ever to celebrate outstanding creative achievement. This year the Britannias will again reward the most exciting global filmmakers and artists who have added to the lasting legacy of great entertainment.”
This year's specific accolades are as follows:
Robert Downey Jr. is the recipient of this year”s “Stanley Kubrick Britannia Award for Excellence in Film,” which is presented to a unique individual, upon whose work is stamped the indelible mark of authorship and commitment, and who has lifted the craft to new heights. Prior recipients of the Stanley Kubrick Britannia Award for Excellence in Film include Warren Beatty, Jeff Bridges, Tom Cruise, Daniel Day Lewis, Robert De Niro, Clint Eastwood, Tom Hanks, George Lucas, Sean Penn, Steven Spielberg and Denzel Washington.
Mark Ruffalo is the recipient of this year's “Britannia Humanitarian Award” for his work with Water Defense. The non-profit organization Ruffalo co-founded, is dedicated to using technology and public engagement to keep waterways and drinking water sources free from contamination and industrial degradation. The Britannia Humanitarian Award is presented to a colleague who has used their position in the entertainment industry to create positive social change and actively shine a light on important humanitarian issues. The award has previously recognized Idris Elba, Richard Curtis, Don Cheadle and Colin Firth.
Emma Watson is the recipient of “The Britannia Award for British Artist of the Year” presented by Burberry. This honor pays tribute to a talented British artist whose outstanding performances in a year have demonstrated the high quality of their craftsmanship. Whether an emerging talent, or an established name, the British Artist of the Year honors a person who represents the best of British talent. Prior recipients include Daniel Craig, Kate Winslet, Tilda Swinton, Helena Bonham Carter, Emily Blunt, Michael Sheen, Rachel Weisz, and more.
Mike Leigh is the recipient of “The John Schlesinger Britannia Award for Excellence in Directing” presented by the GREAT Britain Campaign. The honor pays tribute to the legacy of the brilliant British director who made an unprecedented contribution to one of the great periods in American cinema. Recipients of this honor are deeply respected, distinctive and innovative directors, whose contribution as both technicians and artists represents the zenith of the directing profession.
Dame Judi Dench is the recipient of the “2014 Albert R. Broccoli Britannia Award for Worldwide Contribution to Entertainment.” Recipients are that rare breed of iconic and trail-blazing individuals whose innovative approach has had a profound, lasting impact on the entertainment industry and whose contributions to the moving image are second to none.