CROWN­ING GLORY AT BAF­TAS?

Net­flix and Ama­zon shows up for Baf­tas

The Sunday Post (Newcastle) - - FRONT PAGE - By Bill Gibb BGIBB@SUNDAYPOST.COM

Ex­perts pre­dict dig­i­tal stream­ing ser­vices like Net­flix and Ama­zon will take on the tra­di­tional broad­cast­ers at awards

The stream­ing rev­o­lu­tion pan­ick­ing main­stream broad­cast­ers will take cen­tre stage at tonight’s TV Baf­tas.

Dra­mas The Crown and Black Mir­ror are in line for some of the top awards. And a lead­ing aca­demic says the might of Net­flix and Ama­zon is leav­ing ri­vals floun­der­ing. The warn­ing comes just days af­ter the rev­e­la­tion that Bri­tain’s ter­res­trial broad­cast­ers are propos­ing a ground­break­ing merger for dis­tribut­ing their con­tent.

The BBC, Chan­nel 4 and ITV have been in dis­cus­sions about cre­at­ing a uni­fied stream­ing ser­vice.

US TV and film com­pany NBC Uni­ver­sal, which owns Car­ni­val Films, mak­ers of pe­riod drama Down­ton Abbey, are also be­lieved to be in­volved in the talks.

Hav­ing one cen­tral ser­vice is seen as vi­tal in com­bat­ting Net­flix, which has 8.2 mil­lion UK sub­scribers and Ama­zon Prime, to which 4.3 mil­lion Bri­tish homes are signed up. The Crown is up for Drama Se­ries and star Claire Foy for Lead­ing Ac­tress, while fel­low Net­flix hit Black Mir­ror has Joe Cole nom­i­nated as Lead­ing Ac­tor and Jimmi Simp­son as Supporting Ac­tor.

“Those are the sort of nom­i­na­tions that would nor­mally have just been in the In­ter­na­tional cat­e­gory, not the main ones,” said Pro­fes­sor John Cook, from G l a s g ow Ca l e d o n i a n Univer­sity, who is in­volved in re­search about the grow­ing im­pact of Net­flix.

“They would only have been the tra­di­tional ter­res­trial broad­cast­ers. The Crown is the sort of drama that would have pre­vi­ously gone to the BBC, but they just can’t af­ford it.”

Line of Duty is also up for Best Drama, with star Thandie New­ton fight­ing it out with Foy, Si n e a d Keenan from Lit­tle Boy Blue and Molly Wind­sor f ro m T h re e G i r l s for Lead­ing Ac­tress.

New­ton also fea­tures in the Must-See Mo­ment cat­e­gory, along­side the griev­ing of a pi­lot whale in Blue Planet II, the rev­e­la­tion of Jodie Whit­taker as the new Doc­tor Who and Vis­e­rion be­ing killed by the Night King in Game of Thrones.

S t o r m z y ’s sur­prise ap­pear­ance in Love Is­land and Ari­ana Grande singing One Last Time at One Love Manch­ester are the other nom­i­nees. Bafta TV Awards, BBC1, tonight 8pm.

Black Mir­ror is on Net­flix

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