Noel Clarke: BAFTA Defends Decision To Present Actor With Outstanding Contribution To British Cinema Prize

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Noel Clarke: BAFTA Defends Decision To Present Actor With Outstanding Contribution To British Cinema Prize


The BAFTA has defended its decision to show Noel Clarke his outstanding British contribution to the Cinema Prize – and said calls for the resignation of the board were inappropriate.

Vice President of BAFTA Dame Pippa Harris told Sky News that she “absolutely” stood alongside President Krishnendu Majumdar and Chief Executive Officer Amanda Berry who, with guidance from the organization’s board, honored Clarke after being made aware of allegations of verbal abuse, intimidation and sexual harassment – because the information given to them was anonymous or second-hand.

In response to the allegations, first published following an investigation by the Guardian newspaper, Clarke “vehemently” denied the allegations of sexual misconduct and criminal behavior, but apologized “deeply” for his actions. and said he would seek professional help.

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Pippa Harris aux BAFTA Awards 2020. Pic: Anthony Harvey / BAFTA / Shutterstock

BAFTA has suspended the award but faced criticism for doing it in the first place.

Now Dame Pippa has addressed the issue, speaking for the first time in an exclusive broadcast interview with Sky News.

When asked if Mr Majumdar should resign, Dame Pippa said: “This whole thing has been extremely difficult, as you can imagine, for everyone involved, and Krish has worked with the council throughout. administration. It was a joint decision. -manufacturing process.

“Krish did nothing on his own. So any criticism that has been leveled at BAFTA should be directed to everyone. It’s really not fair to separate people.

“Everything Krish has done he has done with the full approval and knowledge of the council. “

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Noel Clarke was first honored by the BAFTAs in 2009, when he won the Rising Star award. Pic: AP

Emmanuel Anyiam-Osigwe, who founded the British Urban Film Festival and worked with BAFTA, gave up his membership, shocked by the way the allegations against Clarke were handled.

“People have to be held accountable,” he said. “As an organization, it starts at the top. If the CEO has to go too, so be it.

“Krish can’t continue in his post because he’s there, he’s staying there, just sends the wrong signal because whatever way you look at him, the BAFTAs just handled it horribly.” “

When Sky News highlighted the positive changes Mr. Majumdar has made in his role as BAFTA President, helping to make a difference in diversity and inclusion over the past 18 months, Mr. Anyiam-Osigwe said: “It doesn’t count for anything. I feel completely let down. “

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President of BAFTA Krishnendu Majumdar. Pic: Jamie Simonds / BAFTA / Shutterstock

Like BAFTA, the film festival also honored Clarke with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2019 – a distinction they took away from him hours after the allegations were published.

“Our association with Noel started and ended when we presented him with the honorary award… so when I read the article [detailing the allegations against Clarke] I was completely in shock, ”said Anyiam-Osigwe.

Dame Pippa insisted that calling for the resignation of the BAFTA board was not the way to go.

“If we had had a fraction of the information the Guardian had, we would never have given Noel Clarke an award,” she said.

“It’s obvious, but we didn’t have that information. The first time we saw the allegations against him was when they were published by the Guardian newspaper and as soon as we saw the allegations we suspended the price. “

Following the claims of more than 20 women detailed in the Guardian, BAFTA wrote to its 8,000 members to stress that the alleged behavior is contrary to the values ​​of the organization, saying that “it would have been inappropriate to stop the award at that time because of the extreme limited information.

Noel Clarke
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Clarke in Bulletproof with her co-star Ashley Walters. Pic: Sky UK

Clarke quickly gained acclaim for his role in the Kidulthood and Adulthood films, in which he starred and also helped write and direct.

He found more mainstream fame as Mickey Smith in Doctor Who from 2005 to 2010 and as Aaron Bishop in Bulletproof from 2018.

In addition to his recent BAFTA, the London-born actor received the Academy’s Rising Star Award in 2009 after the success of his two disruptive films.

Following the publication of the allegations, the final episode of the five-part ITV show Viewpoint, starring Clarke, was taken off the program, and Sky announced it was halting production of Bulletproof series four. His Bulletproof co-star Ashley Walters said he was “deeply saddened” but could not “stand aside and ignore the allegations”.

Tuesday, actor Adam Deacon a accusé Clarke, with whom he starred in Kidulthood and Adulthood, to sabotage his career.

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