Tune in for an evening of glitz and glamour
Can The British Academy Television Awards, Sunday, BBC1, 8pm outshine their cinematic counterpart? Well, one man adding a little movie glamour to the proceedings is Benedict Cumberbatch, who is now a force to be reckoned with in Hollywood following his Oscar nomination for playing Alan Turing in The Imitation Game. He’s since received his third Leading Actor Bafta nod (and sixth in total) for the role that first gained him international recognition – that of enigmatic super-detective Holmes in Sherlock, the modern reworking of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous tales. He’s up against James Nesbitt for The Missing, and two extraordinary performances as real-life people from Toby Jones and Jason Watkins. Watkins was outstanding in The Lost Honour of Christopher Jeffries, but the winner should be Jones, whose take on clown and football mascot Neil Baldwin in Marvellous was arguably the TV highlight of 2014. The Leading Actress category will be very hotly contested, with first-time nominee Georgina Campbell in the running for surprise hit Murdered by My Boyfriend, alongside Keeley Hawes for Line of Duty. But then the big guns come out. Sheridan Smith has been hotly tipped for her performance in Cilla, which was great – until you realise she didn’t look or sound like Cilla Black, the person she was playing. So, if there’s any justice, it will be Sarah Lancashire who wins for her career-best turn in Happy Valley, which would also be her second win in as many years – in 2014 she took home the Supporting Actress trophy for her work in Last Tango in Halifax. Other luminaries in the running include the ceremony’s host, Graham Norton, for his BBC chat show, as well as Matt Berry (Toast of London), Hugh Bonneville (W1A), Claudia Winkleman (Strictly Come Dancing) and Stephen Rea (The Honourable Woman). Watch out too for Olivia Colman, who is nominated for the fourth consecutive year, this time in the Female Performance in a Comedy Programme for Rev. We do, however, already know the identity of one winner. The name ‘Jon Snow’ may now be synonymous with a Game of Thrones character, but the real Jon Snow, ie the Channel 4 newsreader who has spent the past 40 years covering globally important stories, will receive the Bafta Fellowship. This grand award has previously been handed to the likes of Julie Walters, Michael Palin and David Attenborough, so Snow is in great company.
Boxing clever Graham Norton hosts the ceremony