In addition to my (occasionally disjointed, sorry, I just wanted to get it out) post below called Memoriam Loss (which I’d advise you to read before this), here is the reply I received from BAFTA when I informed them that I was appalled by Nicholas Courtney’s absence from this year’s In Memoriam section during yesterday’s ceremony.
Thank you for your message regarding the absence of Nicholas Courtney from the Obituaries segment in Sunday’s Television Awards broadcast and please accept our apologies for any distress this may have caused.
Nicholas Courtney was on the list of over 170 names considered for inclusion. Every loss is equally important, but the time restriction of the Obituaries section in the broadcast forces us to make a small and necessarily subjective selection, which sadly meant that he could not be included.
You may not be aware that Nicholas Courtney is featured in our online Obituaries area – – which aims to maintain a year-round, public acknowledgement of those in our industries who have passed away. He was also included in the In Memoriam section of the souvenir brochure that was given to all attendees yesterday evening.
We do hope this recognition by BAFTA provides at least some acknowledgement, however small, of Nicholas Courtney’s wonderful career.
All best wishes,
My reply went like this:
Dear Kemuel Solomon,
Thanks for your reply, which I am aware is the cut and paste job you use for all such complaints and doesn’t really get to the nub of the issue. Not only Courtney, but others including the actor Gerard Kelly, and scriptwriters Jeremy Paul and Bob Block, could only expect due credit and remembrance from the Academy. Names who did feature in the awards ceremony video like Tom Bosley, Gary Coleman and Henry Cooper could expect to be remembered elsewhere and will doubtless be so: Cooper was a sportsman, and for the BRITISH Academy to prioritise American performers – whose own academy will rightly give them their dues – over those I mention is appalling.
I’m not someone fighting a corner over a particular performer who appealed to my particular tastes – I am someone pointing out an inherent flaw in an at best misguided and at worst insultingly slapdash approach to what should and could be a reflective tribute section and well earned memorial. It shouldn’t be too much to expect a public acknowledgement to those who gave much to the industry, by those who actually care about it. And are you really telling me viewers would object to an extra minute to find space for people (like the four I mention here) whose work would be known to even the most casual viewer?
Thanks for your reply, but I’m afraid it fails to address the issue in any way satisfactorily.
As an additional addendum (from your apoplectic addressee of annoying alliteration) I would like to point out that I actually understand why Mr Courtney didn’t get a caption on any recent Doctor Who episodes. Now before you get angry with me, I understand and empathise with all of the arguments that say Mr Courtney should have got one (which would have been my personal preference). I also, on the other hand, understand why it didn’t happen.
I’m certain it was a difficult decision to make, and I’m glad I didn’t fall to me to have to make it.
I won’t be joining the chorus of those getting angry about it, though, sorry. I think BAFTA’s omission is a different matter.