BAFTA TV ‘temporarily pause Fellowships and Special Awards’ amid Noel Clarke scandal

The BAFTA 2021 TV Awards has reportedly ‘temporarily paused’ Fellowships and Special Awards ahead of Sunday’s ceremony.

It comes after Noel Clarke, who has been accused by more than 20 women of sexual harassment and bullying, was suspended from BAFTA amid the allegations after he won the Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema award in April.

It was recently reported that the British Academy of Film and Television Awards spent two weeks deciding how best to respond to allegations against Clarke, 45, prior to presenting him with one of its highest honours.

According to new reports, bosses have now allegedly suspended ‘all the individual honours’ which are ‘in the gift of the Academy’ ahead of Sunday’s ceremony.

Reports: The BAFTA 2021 TV Awards has reportedly ‘temporarily paused’ Fellowships and Special Awards ahead of Sunday’s ceremony (pictured, a BAFTA mask gong)

The Mirror claims that a message was sent to members last week which explained that BAFTA were ‘reviewing its selection protocols for its prestigious solo accolades’. 

The publication reported that the message said: ‘We wanted to let you know that while we review the processes behind selecting the awards that are “in the gift of the Academy” – the Special Awards and Fellowships – we have temporarily paused these kinds of awards and they will not feature in Sunday’s ceremony.’ 

The Mirror claims that the only other time a TV Fellowship was ‘given and then cancelled’ was Rolf Harris.

The disgraced children’s entertainer was stripped of his BAFTA Fellowship after he was convicted of 12 indecent assaults at Southwark Crown Court in June 2014, and was sentenced to six years behind bars.

Suspended: It comes after Noel Clarke, who has been accused by more than 20 women of sexual harassment and bullying, was suspended from BAFTA amid the allegations after he won the Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema award in April (pictured on April 10)

Suspended: It comes after Noel Clarke, who has been accused by more than 20 women of sexual harassment and bullying, was suspended from BAFTA amid the allegations after he won the Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema award in April (pictured on April 10) 

Harris was released from HMP Stafford on parole in May 2017 after serving just three years of his sentence. 

Over the years, a collection of people have been awarded a BAFTA Fellowship, the highest accolade the Academy can bestow, including Joan Bakewell, Kate Adie, Jon Snow, Julie Walters and Joanna Lumley.

While the likes of Idris Elba, Lenny Henry and the late Cilla Black have previously won a Special Award during the ceremony.

However, the BAFTA website states that awards ‘in the gift of the Academy’ are ‘presented at the discretion of the BAFTA Television Committee; therefore they may not all be presented in any given year’.

MailOnline has contacted BAFTA for comment.   

Allegations: It was recently reported that the British Academy of Film and Television Awards spent two weeks deciding how best to respond to allegations against Clarke, 45, prior to presenting him with one of its highest honours (pictured in 2019)

Allegations: It was recently reported that the British Academy of Film and Television Awards spent two weeks deciding how best to respond to allegations against Clarke, 45, prior to presenting him with one of its highest honours (pictured in 2019)

It comes after it was revealed that the BAFTA TV Awards is set to beam celebrities who can’t attend Sunday’s event in person onto the red carpet as holograms.

The ceremony will be hosted by Richard Ayoade, while Stacey Dooley and Vick Hope take charge of the red carpet presenting.     

The new reports come after Sky cancelled ‘Bulletproof’ after Clarke was accused of sexual misconduct.

The broadcaster decided to axe the show – which the actor, 45, co-created and starred in – having previously commissioned a fourth season earlier this year, after over 20 women accused him of sexual harassment and bullying.

In a statement to MailOnline, a spokesperson said: ‘Sky will not be proceeding with any further series of Bulletproof. ‘

Ceremony: According to new reports, bosses have now allegedly suspended 'all the individual honours' which are 'in the gift of the Academy' ahead of Sunday's ceremony (One of Sunday's presenter Stacey Dooley pictured in 2017)

Ceremony: According to new reports, bosses have now allegedly suspended ‘all the individual honours’ which are ‘in the gift of the Academy’ ahead of Sunday’s ceremony (One of Sunday’s presenter Stacey Dooley pictured in 2017)   

Twenty women accused him of sexual harassment, groping and bullying, with the claims levelled against him in The Guardian, with seven more women coming forward to do the same after the first report was published.

He has been accused of a range of inappropriate activities, including sexual harassment, unwanted touching or groping, sexually inappropriate behaviour and comments on set, professional misconduct, taking and sharing sexually explicit pictures and videos without consent, and bullying.

The actor has vehemently denied claims by women who accuse him of sexual harassment, groping and bullying between 2004 and 2019.

In his own statement, he said: ‘In a 20-year career, I have put inclusivity and diversity at the forefront of my work and never had a complaint made against me.

‘If anyone who has worked with me has ever felt uncomfortable or disrespected, I sincerely apologise.

Denial: Noel has vehemently denied the allegations in a statement (pictured with his wife Iris Da Silva in February 2017)

Denial: Noel has vehemently denied the allegations in a statement (pictured with his wife Iris Da Silva in February 2017)

‘I vehemently deny any sexual misconduct or wrongdoing and intend to defend myself against these false allegations.’

The Guardian also reported Clarke categorically denied every allegation made against him with the exception of one, where he admitted he once made inappropriate comments about one woman, for which he later apologised.

According to the publication, his lawyers wrote a 29-page letter in which they said Clarke denies all of the other allegations from all 20 women.

Last month it was reported Noel is facing the prospect of a police investigation after seven more women came forward to accuse him of a campaign of sexual harassment and bullying.

With 27 women now saying they were sexually harassed or groped by the celebrated actor and director, Scotland Yard has said it is ‘assessing’ a specific allegation.

The Met Police confirmed that a ‘third-party report’ was made on April 21 ‘relating to allegations of sexual offences committed by a male over a period of time’.

A third party report is when claims are made to an organisation separate from the police. This type of report is anonymous and means the claims cannot be probed by officers but can be used as intelligence.

A spokesman said no criminal investigation had been launched but that officers are ‘currently assessing the information’.

They added: ‘We would urge anyone who believes they have been subjected to a sexual offence to report this to police so the information can be assessed and investigated accordingly.’

Meanwhile, it was reported that BAFTA spent two weeks deciding how best to respond to allegations against Clarke prior to presenting him with one of its highest honours, the Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema Award.

The father-of-three was suspended from BAFTA following the allegations, and at the time Sky took the decision to ‘halt’ filming of the latest series of his east London crime drama Bulletproof.  

New details emerged last month of unscheduled acting workshops held by Clarke at the London School of Dramatic Art.

Decision: Sky has cancelled Bulletproof after over 20 women accused star Noel Clarke of sexual harassment and bullying (Clarke pictured right with co-star Ashley Walters)

Decision: Sky has cancelled Bulletproof after over 20 women accused star Noel Clarke of sexual harassment and bullying (Clarke pictured right with co-star Ashley Walters)

Jake Taylor, the school’s principal, said Clarke joined the board in 2011 in an advisory role and would hold question-and-answer sessions for students. He added: ‘It came to our attention that on one occasion he took it upon himself to turn one of these Q&A sessions into a practical acting workshop.

‘We were informed that in this unsanctioned class he set up improvisation exercises in which students were told they had to get undressed and get ready for bed.

‘Our response was to no longer schedule Noel to take unsupervised sessions with immediate effect.’

In a statement, Mr Taylor said that fresh details in recent days about the session and another previously unknown workshop by Clarke ‘has shocked us’.

‘Had we known about these details at the time we would have ended the professional relationship between Noel and our school with immediate effect,’ he added.

Clarke’s lawyers have denied that the London School of Dramatic Arts asked him to stop giving classes – saying that Clarke’s workshop, called FacingYour Fears was aimed at helping students with anxieties over performing as actors.

Case: Last month, it was reported Noel is facing the prospect of a police investigation after seven more women came forward to accuse him of sexual harassment and bullying

Case: Last month, it was reported Noel is facing the prospect of a police investigation after seven more women came forward to accuse him of sexual harassment and bullying

They also denied that he encouraged or forced anyone to be naked in the workshop. 

Meanwhile, one of Clarke’s co-stars has described the allegations against him as the ‘UK film industry’s best kept secret for years’. Christina Chong, who appeared opposite Clarke in the first series of police drama Bulletproof, posted on Twitter: ‘If in doubt, trust me, it’s true… He’s a sexual predator.’

Actress Jahannah James, who appeared in the film Brotherhood, which was directed by and starred Clarke, says she was forced to audition nude for him in 2013, and claims she later discovered he had covertly filmed it.

Clarke’s Kidulthood co-star Jaime Winstone also broke her silence to throw her support behind the disgraced actor’s accusers in a poignant Time’s Up post.

The actress, 35, who appeared opposite the actor in the 2006 film as Becky, shared the image on Instagram alongside a caption saying: ‘When you’re late to the party but you’ve been on the list for 15 years.’ 

Earlier, Bulletproof actor Ashley Walters said he was ‘deeply saddened’ by the allegations made against Clarke in a lengthy statement posted to Twitter.

Response: Bulletproof actor Ashley Walters (L) recently said he was 'deeply saddened' by the allegations made against Clarke in a lengthy statement posted to Twitter

Response: Bulletproof actor Ashley Walters (L) recently said he was ‘deeply saddened’ by the allegations made against Clarke in a lengthy statement posted to Twitter

He added: ‘My thoughts are with the women who have come forward and told their awful stories, I am in shock and deeply saddened by what I have heard on a multitude of levels.

‘I could never condone behaviour of this nature in nor out of the workplace, and whilst Noel has been a friend and colleague for several years, I cannot stand by and ignore this allegations.   

‘Sexual harassment, abuse, and bullying have no place in our industry. 

‘Every woman has the right to a safe workplace and moving forward I pledge my dedication to this.’ 

Walters has starred as Ronnie Pike in all three seasons of Bulletproof, an east London crime drama.

Last month, Clarke was at the centre of further allegations he sexually harassed or touched others on BBC hit Doctor Who.

The broadcaster appeared to be broadsided by the new reports and said it would investigate specific claims made but was ‘shocked’ to hear of them.

Statement: Ashley wrote, 'I could never condone behaviour of this nature in nor out of the workplace, and whilst Noel has been a friend and colleague for several years, I cannot stand by and ignore this allegations'

Statement: Ashley wrote, ‘I could never condone behaviour of this nature in nor out of the workplace, and whilst Noel has been a friend and colleague for several years, I cannot stand by and ignore this allegations’

Clarke is said to have told one costume assistant, who had long hair, working on series one of the rebooted sci-fi show he ‘liked girls with long hair’ so he could hold onto it when in a specific sexual position.

Another female runner and driver on the show alleges Clarke touched her inappropriately and repeatedly asked her to go to his hotel for sex.

She told the Guardian she pleaded to the assistant director: ‘I can’t drive him anymore. I don’t want to be on my own with him.’

Clarke denies any allegations of sexual misconduct, criminal wrongdoing or sexually inappropriate behaviour, including the latest accusations.

The allegations surfaced after Clarke received an ‘outstanding contribution’ award from BAFTA earlier this year in recognition of his glittering career writing, directing and starring in critically acclaimed films such as Kidulthood, Adulthood and Brotherhood. He also starred as Mickey Smith in Doctor Who between 2005 and 2010.

The Guardian newspaper reported that three senior industry figures had tipped off BAFTA about the claims almost two weeks before the ceremony.

In a statement, BAFTA claimed it had acted ‘as quickly and supportively as we could, even though we had only received the most generic of claims and no actual first-hand information to investigate allegations which were potentially of a criminal nature’. 

Accusations: Last month, Clarke was at the centre of further allegations he sexually harassed or touched others on Doctor Who (pictured on show with David Tennant and Billie Piper)

Accusations: Last month, Clarke was at the centre of further allegations he sexually harassed or touched others on Doctor Who (pictured on show with David Tennant and Billie Piper)

The Guardian said senior figures within the film academy were worried about the potential reputational damage to the organisation over its handling of the claims against Clarke. 

BAFTA chair Krishnendu Majumdar was reportedly aware there could be as many as 12 women making allegations against Clarke on the eve of the awards ceremony.

He sought to speak to anyone with first-hand experience of Clarke’s alleged misconduct and told an industry figure he was ‘trying to do something about’ the situation as it could ‘destroy’ BAFTA ‘in the court of public opinion’, the newspaper said.

Majumdar is said to have described the allegations as a ‘desperately difficult situation for us’ as BAFTA ‘cannot act as judge and jury’.

He also hosted a Zoom call with figures including BAFTA chief executive Amanda Berry to discuss how to respond to the allegations, The Guardian said. Bafta said it would not comment on the claims in The Guardian.

However, some suggested the allegations had become a witch-hunt, which undermined the principle of innocent until proven guilty. 

One leading British actress told this newspaper: ‘It is an hysterical, prurient, over-reaction – all-too typical of the witch-burning climate we live in since the mobs on social media began to dictate the rule of law.’

She added: ‘The rule of law applies. Clarke denies all charges and has not yet been proved guilty.

‘When you ‘no platform’ an entire production because of an alleged crime, you are punishing hundreds of innocent creatives for the as-yet-unproven misdemeanours of one member. Writer, actors, crews and the public lose their rights.’

Clarke has said he’s ‘deeply sorry’ for some of his actions.

He added: ‘I vehemently deny any sexual misconduct or criminal wrongdoing. Recent reports, however, have made it clear to me that some of my actions have affected people in ways I did not intend or realise. 

‘To those individuals, I am deeply sorry. I will be seeking professional help to educate myself and change for the better.’ 

BAFTA TV Awards 2021: Nominations

DRAMA SERIES

GANGS OF LONDON

I HATE SUZIE

SAVE ME TOO 

THE CROWN

LEADING ACTOR

JOHN BOYEGA – Small Axe

JOSH O’CONNOR – The Crown

PAAPA ESSIEDU – I May Destroy You

PAUL MESCAL – Normal People

SHAUN PARKES – Small Axe

WALEED ZUAITER – Baghdad Central

LEADING ACTRESS

BILLIE PIPER – I Hate Suzie

DAISY EDGAR-JONES – Normal People 

HAYLEY SQUIRES – Adult Material 

JODIE COMER – Killing Eve

LETITIA WRIGHT – Small Axe

MICHAELA COEL – I May Destroy You

SUPPORTING ACTOR

KUNAL NAYYAR – Criminal: UK

MALACHI KIRBY – Small Axe 

MICHAEL SHEEN – Quiz

MICHEAL WARD – Small Axe 

RUPERT EVERETT – Adult Material

TOBIAS MENZIES – The Crown

SUPPORTING ACTRESS

HELENA BONHAM CARTER – The Crown

LEILA FARZAD – I Hate Suzie 

RAKIE AYOLA – Anthony 

SIENA KELLY – Adult Material

SOPHIE OKONEDO – Criminal: UK 

WERUCHE OPIA – I May Destroy You

COMEDY ENTERTAINMENT PROGRAMME

CHARLIE BROOKER’S ANTIVIRAL WIPE 

ROB & ROMESH VS Jack Shillaker

THE BIG NARSTIE SHOW

THE RANGANATION

FEMALE PERFORMANCE IN A COMEDY PROGRAMME

AIMEE LOU WOOD – Sex Education

DAISY HAGGARD – Breeders

DAISY MAY COOPER – This Country

EMMA MACKEY – Sex Education 

GBEMISOLA IKUMELO – Famalam

MAE MARTIN – Feel Good

MALE PERFORMANCE IN A COMEDY PROGRAMME

CHARLIE COOPER – This Country

GUZ KHAN – Man Like Mobeen

JOSEPH GILGUN – Brassic

NCUTI GATWA – Sex Education

PAUL RITTER – Friday Night Dinner

REECE SHEARSMITH – Inside No.9

MINI-SERIES

ADULT MATERIAL

I MAY DESTROY YOU 

NORMAL PEOPLE 

SMALL AXE

CURRENT AFFAIRS

AMERICA’S WAR ON ABORTION (EXPOSURE) 

ITALY’S FRONTLINE: A DOCTOR’S DIARY

THE BATTLE FOR HONG KONG (DISPATCHES)

THE CYPRUS PAPERS UNDERCOVER (AL JAZEERA INVESTIGATIONS)

DAYTIME

JIMMY MCGOVERN’S MOVING ON 

RICHARD OSMAN’S HOUSE OF GAMES

THE CHASE 

THE GREAT HOUSE GIVEAWAY  

ENTERTAINMENT PERFORMANCE

ADAM HILLS – The Last Leg

BRADLEY WALSH – Beat the Chasers

CLAUDIA WINKLEMAN – Strictly Come Dancing

DAVID MITCHELL – Would I Lie to You? At Christmas 

GRAHAM NORTON – The Graham Norton Show 

ROMESH RANGANATHAN – The Ranganation 

ENTERTAINMENT PROGRAMME

ANT & DEC’S SATURDAY NIGHT TAKEAWAY 

LIFE & RHYMES

STRICTLY COME DANCING 

THE MASKED SINGER

FACTUAL SERIES

CRIME & PUNISHMENT

HOSPITAL

LOSING IT: OUR MENTAL HEALTH EMERGENCY 

ONCE UPON A TIME IN IRAQ

FEATURES

BIG ZUU’S BIG EATS

LONG LOST FAMILY: BORN WITHOUT TRACE

MORTIMER AND WHITEHOUSE: GONE FISHING 

THE REPAIR SHOP  

NEWS COVERAGE

BBC NEWS AT TEN: PRIME MINISTER ADMITTED TO INTENSIVE CARE 

CHANNEL 4 NEWS: DETERRING DEMOCRACY 

NEWSNIGHT: COVID CARE CRISIS 

SKY NEWS: INSIDE IDLIB 

REALITY & CONSTRUCTED FACTUAL

MASTERCHEF: THE PROFESSIONALS 

RACE ACROSS THE WORLD 

THE SCHOOL THAT TRIED TO END RACISM 

THE WRITE OFFS 

SINGLE DRAMA

ANTHONY

BBW (ON THE EDGE)

SITTING IN LIMBO 

THE WINDERMERE CHILDREN

SOAP & CONTINUING DRAMA

CASUALTY

CORONATION STREET

EASTENDERS

HOLLYOAKS  

INTERNATIONAL

LITTLE AMERICA 

LOVECRAFT COUNTRY

UNORTHODOX

WELCOME TO CHECHNYA: THE GAY PURGE (STORYVILLE)

LIVE EVENT

LIFE DRAWING LIVE! 

SPRINGWATCH

THE ROYAL BRITISH LEGION FESTIVAL OF REMEMBRANCE

THE THIRD DAY: AUTUMN Production Team 

SCRIPTED COMEDY

GHOSTS 

INSIDE NO. 9 

MAN LIKE MOBEEN

THIS COUNTRY

SHORT FORM PROGRAMME

CRIPTALES 

DISABLED NOT DEFEATED: THE ROCK BANS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES – DELTA 7 

THE MAIN PART 

THEY SAW THE SUN FIRST

SINGLE DOCUMENTARY

AMERICAN MURDER: THE FAMILY NEXT DOOR 

ANTON FERDINAND: FOOTBALL, RACISM & ME

LOCKED IN: BREAKING THE SILENCE (STORYVILLE) 

SURVIVING COVID 

VIRGIN MEDIA’S MUST-SEE MOMENT (voted for by the public)

BRIDGERTON – Penelope is revealed as Lady Whistledown 

BRITAIN’S GOT TALENT – Diversity perform a routine inspired by the events of 2020

EASTENDERS – Gray kills Chantelle  

GOGGLEBOX – Reactions to Boris Johnson’s press conference

NIGELLA’S COOK, EAT, REPEAT – Mee-cro-wah-vay

THE MANDALORIAN – Luke Skywalker arrives

 

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