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BAFTA Games Awards 2021 open for entry

9 July 2020
  • Entry opens with pilot for BFI Diversity Standards & bullying, harassment and racism guidance in the British Game category 
  • Awards eligibility is not affected in this pilot year 
  • Entrants in the British Game category will be asked to provide information on their companies’ production practices - including policy and procedure on bullying, harassment and racism in the workplace - as part of pilot
  • BAFTA Games Awards to take place in March 2021, date tbc

London, 9 July 2020: The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has today opened entries for the British Academy Games Awards 2021, which will take place in March 2021. The Awards have recognised and celebrated creative excellence in games since 2003. BAFTA also announces today that the BFI Diversity Standards will be piloted across the British Game category; entrants will also be asked to provide information on their companies’ production practices, as part of the pilot. 

BAFTA’s Games Committee undertakes a review of the rules and guidelines each year in consultation with a wide range of industry stakeholders. This process allows BAFTA to adjust its criteria to ensure the awards reflect the ever-changing industry. BAFTA has successfully introduced the BFI Diversity Standards to the Film Awards in 2019 and are piloting these across the UK production categories at the Virgin Media British Academy Television Awards this year. 

BAFTA are asking entrants in the British Game category to participate in this pilot, with the aim of introducing Diversity Standards as part of the rules and regulations for future awards. Entrants will be encouraged to ‘self-assess’ against the criteria in the BFI Diversity Standards for Games, ahead of their implementation in the future. Eligibility for 2021 Awards will not be affected.

Amanda Berry OBE, CEO at BAFTA, said: “We are pleased to announce the pilot of the BFI Diversity Standards for the British Game category this year, with the aim of fully introducing diversity standards to BAFTA’s Games Awards in the future. This is part of our efforts to support the industry in its drive to create a more diverse, representative and inclusive UK games industry. Alongside our year-round global programme of events and initiatives, BAFTA will continue to find new ways to drive positive and impactful change.”

Ben Roberts, BFI Chief Executive, said: “We’re really happy to be working with BAFTA to widen the reach of BFI Diversity Standards - and in particular to be working with the games community whose output is so culturally important. This pilot allows us to not only road test a set of the Standards that have been newly adapted for games, but will also introduce them to a huge number of developers and publishers as a framework for adopting more inclusive practices at all stages of a projects development.”

The BFI Diversity Standards are a framework for encouraging equality of opportunity and addressing under-representation in the screen industries. Newly adapted for the games sector in consultation with the games industry the Standards are being used for the first time as part of the pilot with the BAFTA Games Awards. They call on everyone across the sector to make meaningful changes to their projects to become more inclusive and as a result opening up more opportunities for people from all backgrounds to interact with and design games. 

The BFI Diversity Standards will primarily focus on under-represented groups across four areas:

A: In-game representation, themes and narratives

B: Creative leadership and development team

C: Industry access & opportunities

D: Player Base Development

View the pilot BFI Diversity Standards for games HERE.

In addition, and in consultation with the games industry, BAFTA and BFI have created guidance to help game-makers to prevent bullying, harassment and racism in the workplace. This guidance supports the free online training provided by ScreenSkills, Tackling Harassment and Bullying at Work.

View the new bullying, harassment and racism guidance HERE.

BAFTA will be asking entrants a series of questions, including whether or not they have read the guidance, have a policy and procedure in place for preventing bullying and harassment in the workplace, and ensure all of their workers are aware of that policy and procedure. This data will enable BAFTA to identify where further support, guidance and training is required and follow up where appropriate. 

BAFTA is continuing to identify ways to lead change within the film, games and television industries. Its commitment to promoting and increasing diversity and inclusion in the industry remains key to its mission into 2021 and beyond. BAFTA is currently undergoing an Awards Review, which looks at every element of the Awards. The steering group of this review was unveiled earlier this year and findings and actions will be announced at the end of summer 2020. 

 

SUMMARY OF KEY DATES

Thursday 9 July 2020 - Applications open (http://entry.bafta.org)

Thursday 19 November 2020 - Entries close

Tuesday 2 March 2021 - Nominations announced

March 2021 (Date tbc) - British Academy Games Awards

 

For further information and press requests, please contact WDW Entertainment:

Molly Whitehall | [email protected] | 07789 848 782

Izzy Baker | [email protected] | 07876 222 779

Notes to entrants:

Anyone with a UK game project at any stage of development and production is strongly recommended to engage with the Standards as soon as possible and consider what changes can be made to meet as many of the Standards’ criteria as possible. The earlier inclusion and representation are considered in the lifecycle of a project, the easier it will be to meet the Standards and create more representative work.

BAFTA and the BFI aim to support film-makers in making these changes and a number of roundtables and workshops will be held over the coming months. This support is underpinned by the BFI’s ongoing skills and talent development strategies which aim to open up opportunities to everyone across the UK, regardless of their background or where they live, to ensure the UK industry has a strong and representative pipeline of talent to work on or lead projects. For queries about BAFTA Awards rules and processes please contact [email protected].

About BAFTA Games

BAFTA curates a year-round global programme of events and initiatives that support the games industry. This includes developer talks, showcases, debates, scholarships and networking, as well as the flagship Games Lecture by an inspirational practitioner. Applications are now open for: BAFTA Young Game Designers (YGD), which gives young people and educators insights into the industry and access to the brightest creative minds in games; BAFTA Scholarships, which enable talented individuals to study a post-graduate course in games; and BAFTA Breakthrough Brits, which supports emerging stars of the games industry.

About the BFI Diversity Standards

The BFI Diversity Standards are an industry wide initiative for adoption by the film, television and games sectors. They have already been embraced by BAFTA (Film, Television and Games Awards), Film4, BBC Films, BIFA (British Independent Film Awards) and Paramount Studios. The Standards focus on disability, gender, race, age and sexual orientation (as they pertain to the Equality Act 2010) and also seek to ensure that people from socio-economic disadvantaged backgrounds and those from outside London and the South East are better represented. In addition, the BFI Diversity Standards guide both the BFI’s own activities and the projects it funds.

www.bfi.org.uk/diversitystandards

The BFI is the UK’s lead organisation for film, television and the moving image. It is a distributor of National Lottery funding and a cultural and education charity that:

  • Curates and presents the greatest international public programme of world cinema for audiences; in cinemas, at festivals and online
  • Cares for the BFI National Archive – the most significant film and television archive in the world
  • Actively seeks out and supports the next generation of filmmakers
  • Works with Government and industry to make the UK the most creatively exciting and prosperous place to make film internationally

Founded in 1933, the BFI is a registered charity governed by Royal Charter. The BFI Board of Governors is chaired by Josh Berger CBE.

About the Bullying, Harassment and Racism Guidance

Read the guidance at https://bit.ly/baftabullyingharassmentracismguidelinesjuly2020

 

This page was updated on 27/7/20 to clarify that the Diversity Standards are being piloted in the British Game category only, and that eligibility won’t be affected this year.

About BAFTA

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) is a world-leading independent arts charity that brings the very best work in film, games and television to public attention and supports the growth of creative talent in the UK and internationally. Through its Awards ceremonies and year-round programme of learning events and initiatives – which includes workshops, masterclasses, scholarships, lectures and mentoring schemes in the UK, USA and Asia – BAFTA identifies and celebrates excellence, discovers, inspires and nurtures new talent, and enables learning and creative collaboration. For advice and inspiration from the best creative minds in working in film, games and television, visit www.bafta.org/guru. For more, visit www.bafta.org.