Last night various members of the RadioTimes.com team headed to London’s Theatre Royal to follow all of the Bafta TV Awards action as it happened.
It was a huge night for telly’s finest stars and we dashed from the red carpet to the ceremony to the winners’ press conference and into the media room to bring you all of the action before it made it on BBC1.
Graham Norton was in charge of hosting duties and led a superb night of entertainment. Among the gongs, Broadchurch took home Best Drama Series and Ant and Dec added another two trophies to their ever-growing cabinet.
In amongst the tears and the fancy frocks, here’s my pick of the top eight moments:
Amanda Abbington’s red carpet essentials
The excitement of Amanda Abbington and Martin Freeman arriving on the red carpet together was one thing. Amanda looked amazing and Martin was totally rocking a lime green tie. But it was the picture that Amanda tweeted while they were en route that tickled me. It was a little peek inside her bag revealing a pack of fruity Polos and a pack of Sesame Snaps with coconut. The Bafta essentials we never knew we needed.
Mel and Sue presenting
The Great British Bake Off hosts Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins took to the stage to present the award for Reality and Constructed Factual. This was won by Channel 4’s Gogglebox, a popular winner among the audience.
This Friday we will be able to see the stars of Gogglebox watch Gogglebox win the Bafta. “It will be a bit weird. It will be a bit ‘eating itself’,” the producers said in the winners’ press conference.
But it was Mel and Sue’s approach to presenting that mark this award out as memorable, ie their full-blown honesty: “Our blood type is currently Prosecco”. Nicely done ladies.
When Breaking Bad was announced as the winner of Best International Show by Mr Selfridge star Jeremy Piven, the room filled with anticipation for Aaron Paul’s speech. He’d already greeted the whole room as “beautiful beautiful bitches” when he presented the award for Comedy and Comedy Entertainment Programme.
Our own Susanna caught the moment on her camera:
Mr Paul didn’t disappoint, giving a very humble speech about how chuffed he was to be in the company of the other shows in the category. “The fact that I’m standing on this stage is crazy to me,” he said.
Later, he touched my shoulder after I congratulated him on his win as he walked through the media room. He said, “Thank you sweetie”. You know, just as an aside… (I’m still smiling).
Olivia Colman’s acceptance speech
Broadchurch star Olivia Colman was the belle of the Baftas all over again, collecting the Best Actress gong from Jurassic Park star Sam Neill (her third Bafta in two years). Even the media room was filled with cheers as Colman sashayed up in a beautiful green dress to accept her award.
Her tears were endearing, her kind words about co-star David Tennant even more so and then she hit us with a spectacular note to creator Chris Chibnall: “Chris Chibnall is a f***ing genius”. I know, right? She swore on the telly. Then she did a shout out to her teacher friend, just because she knew she’d find it hilarious. Brilliant award ceremony moment? Tick.
Cilla Black “Cilla-brating”
TV’s golden girl Cilla Black scooped her own special recognition award from Paul O’Grady during last night’s ceremony. They played a brilliant montage of all of her work (which made me wish Blind Date would come back) before she hit the media room to greet the press. She told us of her upcoming biopic (in which Sheridan Smith plays her) that it’s like having her life flash before her eyes.
“I’ve been doing exactly what I wanted to do for all my life,” she said admitting she’d be “Cilla-brating” later. This, I felt, was perfect for a meme. After putting a shout-out in the live blog for someone to make one, I got my wish.
Radio Times Audience Award
It’s always very exciting when you hear the company you work for mentioned on TV and last night Radio Times had its own special award. It was the RT Audience Award and you’ve been voting in your tens of thousands over the past few months to choose your winner. Breaking Bad, Gogglebox, Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor, The Great British Bake Off and Educating Yorkshire were all in the running. But it was Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor that scooped the prize.
“We make the show for the audience. We want the show to be loved by as big an audience as possible. You can never forget the fans,” show producers said. We also chatted to Mark Gatiss on the red carpet, who had more to say about Who.
Richard Ayoade’s one-liner
One to remember if you ever pick up an award this one. The IT Crowd star Richard Ayoade, upon receiving his award for Best Male Performance in a Comedy Programme, told the audience: “I did not think I’d ever have to say ‘I’d like to thank the Academy’ outside of my fan letters to Fame Academy.” Splendid.
Sean Harris’s acceptance speech
Southcliffe star Sean Harris took the stage to accept the Best Leading Actor gong, creating one of the best speeches of the night.
He wasn’t entirely sure what to say at first although joked, “I’ll try not to mumble”. A nice Jamaica Inn reference there to kick things off. He admitted his agent would be nervous as he went on to thank multiple people, including his mate Bill who would be in the pub. After letting him go on (and on a bit more), Norton laughed: “We can consider that award fully accepted.”
If you missed any of the action last night, check out our live blog for all of the details and see the full list of winners here.