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BAFTA may resked kudos

Blighty film org mulls move to pre-Academy Awards slot

LONDON — The British Academy of Film & Television Arts is considering whether to move its film awards next year from April to a late-February slot, right in the midst of the Oscar campaign.

BAFTA’s incoming chairman, Simon Relph, is planning to consult the org’s members on the proposal in the coming weeks.

At the moment, the BAFTA Awards take place a couple of weeks after the Oscars. To some, this makes the event an elegant coda to the American award season — to others, it seems an anticlimactic afterthought.

Picking prize slot

BAFTA has identified a period in late February and early March when there is a brief lull in the parade of Stateside prize-giving into which the British awards could be slotted.

The org considered moving its ceremony last year, but decided to stick with the April date. However, BAFTA insiders believe that some key opponents to the earlier date have softened their position.

BAFTA goes out of its way to stretch its qualifying rules to ensure that the same films that are up for Oscar consideration are also in the frame for its awards, despite the fact that many such pics are not released in the U.K. until February or March. Org sources said this flexibility would not be compromised by moving the ceremony to earlier in the year.

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