LONDON — The British Academy of Film & TV Arts has decided to cap its worldwide membership at 6,500.
The org has 6,240 members on its books — 4,760 in the U.K., and 1,480 across the two American branches, BAFTA/LA and BAFTA East Coast.
In future, the British membership will be capped at 5,000, and the American roll at 1,500.
BAFTA has expanded rapidly in the past few years, as a result of a concerted drive to inject new vitality into the org by attracting a younger and more diverse membership, better representing the industry at large.
But after the last few spaces are filled, BAFTA will revert to admitting new members only when existing ones depart.
It will also become more selective about whom it admits. Applicants will for the first time have to prove they have made a “significant contribution” to the industry.
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The org will identify areas of expertise under-represented among its membership — make-up and hair, for example — and favor practitioners in those fields over other applicants.
BAFTA chair Duncan Kenworthy said, “This cap will allow us to fine-tune our voting membership, with achievement and expertise always paramount but with more attention paid to areas in which we feel we’re under-represented.”
BAFTA/LA chair Gary Dartnall added, “The decision to place a membership cap is a positive step from a confident Academy, and we welcome this approach.”
Alongside the cap on voting membership, the org is considering the introduction of non-voting membership.