With the event now acting as a curtain raiser for the Oscars, and transferring to BBC television for the first time, the event’s profile was higher than ever this year. Helping to keep it sky high were Creative Technology, who flew 84 modules of the new Barco i10 high brightness LED display - its most prestigious outing to date. The screen was configured as a 12 x 7 display (in 16:9 aspect ratio), and attached to four CM Lodestar motors. "Having done the Orange British Academy Film Awards for the last two years we were again asked to provide image magnification based on our successful track record," said CT’s director of sales, Guy Mapley. "We opted to use the i10 based on its added punch and brightness." He added that one of the benefits of the new 10mm pixel pitch displays was its ease of rigging.
To service the circle and balcony two 12ft wide side screens were flown - again in 16x9 aspect ratio - projected from Christie Digital DLP X6 Roadsters. The feeds, taken directly from the OB truck, were a combination of live camera, graphics and VT inserts. The show was produced for the BBC by Initial TV. Production manager was Sophie Huda, while Lisa Chapman was show producer. The latter paid tribute to the technical expertise of the production, stating that the rigging time in particular had been swift. She added that the stage concept had evolved this year in so far as the giant screen was fully integrated into Peter Bingerman’s set design.
As for the awards themselves - hosted by Stephen Fry - fantasy epic The Lord of The Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring swept the board, winning five, including best film. Dame Judi Dench landed her eighth British Academy title, just months after she was given a BAFTA fellowship, winning the best actress prize for her performance in Iris. Russell Crowe, an Oscar winner last year, triumphed in the best actor category for his role as math genius John Nash in the acclaimed film A Beautiful Mind.