BAFTA turbocharges “Breakthrough Brits”

A group of seventeen up and coming British creatives from the fields of film, television and gaming have been named as BAFTA’s first ever “Breakthrough Brits.”

The group will be invited to a networking event with industry experts at BAFTA, next month. “We want to turbocharge the careers of really talented people right across the spectrum of the creative industries,” BAFTA’s Chairman John Willis explained.

James Floyd, from My Brother The Devil, at LFF 2012

The list includes the directors Rowan Athale, whose debut feature Wasteland featured at the 2012 London Film Festival, and Zam Salim, whose Up There won him the Best Director award at the British Academy Scotland Awards last year.

Actors being given a boost include James Floyd from My Brother The Devil, Paul Brannigan from The Angel’s Share and Chloe Pirrie, from Shell, for which she was nominated for the Best Newcomer prize at last year’s London Film Festival.

Sophia George and Mitu Khandaker are among the games designers and developers being honoured.


Paul Brannigan, promoting The Angel’s Share at Cannes 2012

The youngest on the list is 17 year old actor Tom Holland, who moved from the lead role in the stage version of Billy Elliot to being widely acclaimed in the tsunami drama The Impossible. He’s already been named one of Screen International’s Stars of Tomorrow, received the Spotlight Award at the Hollywood Film Festival and was the Young British Performer of the Year at January’s London Film Critics Circle Awards.

At 41, producer Nisha Parti is the oldest of the “Breakthrough Brits.” Her debut feature Honour stars Paddy Considine in a thriller about an honour killing.

One of the jurors who selected the group, the director Shane Meadows, described BAFTA’s initiative as “amazing.” Another juror, the Les Miserables actor Eddie Redmayne, said “It’s a genius initiative and one of those great ideas that makes you think ‘why hadn’t it happened before?’”

The full alphabetical list of those being given the support of BAFTA is:

Rowan Athale, 32, writer/director

Ed Barratt, 30, producer

Paul Brannigan, 27, actor

Oliver Clarke, 35, game developer

Rex Crowle, 36, game designer

James Floyd, 28, actor

Sophia George, 23, game designer

Tom Holland, 17, actor

Mitu Khandaker, 29, game developer

Dominic Mitchell, 33, writer

Ade Oyefeso, 20, actor

Nisha Parti, 41, producer

Dan Pearce, 19, game developer

Chloe Pirrie, 26, actress

Sharon Rooney, 24, actress

Zam Salim, 40, writer/director

Arthur Williams, 27, broadcaster