With a new venue for an established pre-Emmy party, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts celebrated small-screen nominees Saturday at the London Hotel’s Boxwood restaurant in West Hollywood.
“Downton Abbey’s” Julian Fellowes held court with co-stars Joanne Froggatt and Laura Carmichael and a circle of admirers in one of the crowded rooms. “I’m always excited about the Emmys,” he said. As for “Downton,” he said that he would write a novel about it, but couldn’t decide if it would be a prequel or sequel. Meanwhile, his new show, “The Gilded Age” is going well, he added.
Nominee Keegan-Michael Key revealed to Variety a superstition for awards season. He said, “Just before they open the envelope I say, ‘Uh “Key & Peele”‘ in my mind, and then I say another word. Maybe one day that will work. Last week I didn’t do it and we won make up at the Creative Arts Emmys. So maybe I should distract myself or something as they’re reading the names.”
“Black-ish” star Yara Shahidi doesn’t have any superstitions, but, “I feel like we’re gonna win. Tomorrow morning, when I wake up, I’m going to play my favorite playlist.”
Simon Helberg of “The Big Bang Theory,” meanwhile, said he’ll be “watching the Emmys in his air-conditioned house.”
BAFTA/LA’s chairman of the board Kieran Breen while welcoming guests, congratulated the nominees. “Nowhere is the special relationship between British and American talent more tangible than in the constantly evolving space of television,” he said. “We’re here to salute the talent that is at the top of their career, but a big part of BAFTA’s job is to look forward and to nurture the next generation of award winners. And through our master classes and seminars and our social outreach and student programs we hope to be able to identify and nurture that next generation of award winners. So events like today are crucial for us in fundraising to support those very important programs that BAFTA runs.”
Among the talent that mingled with BAFTA/LA’s Chantal Rickards, Matthew Wiseman and British consul in Los Angeles Chris O’Connor were Beau Willimon, Tony Hale, Niecy Nash, Kate Walsh, Cuba Gooding Jr., Emilia Clarke and Sela Ward.