23 February 11
Find out how BAFTA in New York organises it's Screening and Events programme.
Screenings are made possible through distributors, studios and PR companies and are primarily intended for Voting Members who must screen as many titles as possible of films eligible for a British Academy Film Award.
The Screening Committee - co-chaired by Jill Hawkins and Chief Executive Officer, Christina Thomas, along with Patrick Connolly, Susan Wagner and Members Service Chair, Lisa Oberhofer among a growing group of Committee members, provide ongoing links and contacts with studios and distributors throughout the year.
Through a central diary screenings are put into various stages of booking from date holds to confirmed as the studios determine the marketing of their upcoming titles and their schedule of openings in the UK (the one criteria for a BAFTA award). At this stage Q&As are first identified but almost never confirmed until the screening is posted (announced) by BAFTA in New York. Often talent is added much closer to the date if the screening is tied to a weekend “junket.” Everything changes at least once.
As soon as the theater, talent and information are finalized, all of the vital information will be posted on the event calender within the 123signup members services area of the BAFTA in New York website. Email invitations, with a hot link to the registration system, are automatically generated through the hosting service to all current members. Registration is fast and automated.
As the screenings are confirmed by by members of the Screening Committee, Lisa Harrison's team of Screening Committee volunteers are emailed via Basecamp for either "check in" or "lead" for each each screening. Depending on the complexity of the screening 3-5 people are required for each of the 70-80 screenings and events held each year.
Screening Committee Members and senior "Leads" run the on-site screenings, taking responsibility for ensuring that the theater is prepared, print has arrived and if necessary mikes, chairs and talent will all be available. If talent is expected, photography, studio contacts and schedules and a Board Member are usually added to the mix. In a preview screening security is often present and timings must be adjusted accordingly. Door opening times are a major starting point for all screenings.
Someone once described all of this as holding a party for 300 people five times a week. Through all of this we’d like to thank our volunteers above all others for making our parties happen, much less so very successful.