‘Sigh, do better’: Internet Blast’s BAFTA After Awards Shows Defends Counting Older White Women as Diversity

The BAFTA Awards focuses on a whole range of talented actors and actresses who can be shortlisted to celebrate their work. This further glorifies their efforts and the charisma they have brought to their projects. From directors to actors, everyone can admire the spotlight that the BAFTAs bring. What might just be seen as the British equivalent of the Oscars may also be in a contentious position at the moment.

The BAFTA Awards

Fans are upset with the BAFTAs for their stance on ethnicity and diversity this year. While the Lead Actress nominees all deserved the nomination, it wasn’t as if there weren’t others who should have been in that category as well. This issue was particularly raised because every nominee in the category happened to be a white woman.

BAFTA awards aim to pass nomination of older white women as a step towards diversity

Amazingly, the 2023 BAFTA Awards had an exhaustive rate of ethnicity and diversity. While the number remains at 40% on average, it’s fallen to a disappointing 24% this year. The fans were extremely unhappy with this move. This was all the more worrisome given that the lead actress nominees happened to be all white women. To defend herself, CEO Jane Millichip raised the issue of how older white women also ranked in diversity.

Billy Piper

“This category shows that when you look at the ages of the actresses and the roles written for them, it’s exceptional. We’ve been discussing this for a long time in the television and film world: Are the roles written for women over 40? This is a really impressive result.”

This was not well received under any circumstances and the fans retaliated. To control the backlash, her words were then clarified. It was noted that the representation of older women was a separate issue. However, the BAFTAs chose to equate it with the issue of lack of ethnicity and diversity.

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Ambika Mod wins fans’ hearts for the BAFTAs

The six nominees for Lead Actress included Billie Piper for I Hate Suzie Too, Imelda Staunton for The Crown, Kate Winslet for I Am Ruth, Maxine Peake for Anne, Vicky McClure for Without Sin and Sarah Lancashire for Julia. Another actress whose name was included in the nominations was Ambika Mod for her role in This Is Going To Hurt. Although she was nominated for Supporting Actress, fans wanted something different.

Ambika Mod in This Is Gonna Hurt

“We are part of an ecosystem and sit at the end of this pipeline. Our awards are a barometer of what’s going on in the industry… We’ll be taking the data and stats from this year’s awards – nominees and winners – and feeding that into our conversations about what we’re doing next year. It’s an ongoing conversation.”

The lack of diversity throughout the ceremony was very disappointing and got worse. Of the 49 BAFTA Film Awards winners, 47 were white. Also, the only black person on stage was the co-host of the event.

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Fans share their disappointment at the BAFTA Awards The BAFTA Awards

Fans have consistently spoken out against the BAFTAs and how disappointed they are. They had not expected such a step. From their point of view, this was a step away from a progressive front and they expected better.

BAFTA says older white women count as diversity – what a ridiculous and totally age appropriate statement – no one should be considered diverse based on age! Shame on you #BAFTATVAwards

— Mature Times (@MatureTimes) March 22, 2023

The statistics are clear – the ‘diversity’ of UK industry has always centred, favored and prioritized WW. I’m not sure if this comes as a big surprise to anyone. I guess putting “older” in front makes it sound a bit more inclusive…🤷🏽‍♂️https://t.co/TjAHt9NTFl

— theBlaakRthefilmmaker (@BlaakRichardson) March 22, 2023

is there diversity in our room?
pic.twitter.com/oTXoOtubXj

— ✨ (@VidaLikeFrida) March 22, 2023

pic.twitter.com/vMWykSwch8

— La Reina🇺🇸Creole🇩🇴🇯🇲🇵🇷🇹🇹🇨🇺🇭🇹🇲🇽🇨🇴 (@LaReinaCreole) March 22, 2023

pic.twitter.com/TCpUdqGAvZ

— Suh | a Stark 🐺 (@SuhMenezess) March 22, 2023

lol! BAFTA goes to BAFTA!

Technically, older white women are a demographic, but they’re still part of the Anglo-Saxon voter base. Common sense dictates that diversity applies to race and ethnicity as well, not just gender/age.

Sigh. Do better @BAFTA. 🧐

— Simone Cromer 🎥 (@TheatreofZen) March 22, 2023

While the issue they raise is relevant and must not be overlooked, it must also be argued that they do not at all acknowledge that other issues have become a bigger problem. All of the Lead Actress nominees were not only white women, but also received multiple BAFTA nominations.

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Source: Deadline