Poitier rules Britannias

Kudos to be handed out on Nov. 2

Sidney Poitier, Anthony Minghella and Rachel Weisz are the recipients of the Britannia Awards, to be bestowed Nov. 2 in Los Angeles by the local chapter of the British Academy of Film & Television Arts.

Poitier will receive the Cunard Britannia Award for lifetime contributions to international film; screenwriter-director Minghella will receive the John Schlesinger Britannia Award for artistic excellence in directing; and Rachel Weisz will receive the Britannia Award for artist of the year.

The ceremony will mark BAFTA/LA’s 15th annual awards show, which will unspool at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel. The event, which is not televised, is known for the unbuttoned yet eloquent speeches of presenters and recipients.

As previously announced, Clint Eastwood will receive BAFTA/LA’s annual 2006 Stanley Kubrick Britannia Award for excellence in film.

Poitier serves as ambassador to Japan for the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, ambassador to UNESCO and president-CEO of Verdon Cedric Prods.

Poitier is the second recipient of the Cunard Britannia Award. Last year, the honor went to British filmmaker Ronald Neame.

For the past four years, Minghella has been chairman of the British Film Institute.

Founded in 1987, BAFTA/LA is a nonprofit comprising 1,200 members in the Los Angeles-based film and TV industries, representing the largest showbiz professional association outside of the U.K.