BAFTA, AMPAS Eyeing Global Set of Diversity Standards for Awards Eligibility

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A BAFTA Award

BAFTA has already introduced the BFI's Diversity Standards criteria to two of its film categories.

The Academies on both sides of the Atlantic have been working closely together on the issue of diversity and could in the coming years introduce a global set of standards to be used across their film awards.

The news comes just as AMPAS revealed that it would begin to set inclusion requirements for eligibility, forming a taskforce "to develop and implement new representation and inclusion standards for Oscars eligibility by July 31, 2020."

In a statement following the AMPAS announcement, BAFTA said that it welcomed the news, pointing out that it became the "first film awards organization to introduce diversity criteria," when it deployed the British Film Institute's Diversity Standards in 2018. These standards are now a requirement for eligibility for the British Film and Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer categories.

The Hollywood Reporter understands that the BFI, BAFTA and AMPAS have been in touch and have discussed creating a global set of criteria that they could use across all three organisations.

"BAFTA very much hopes that we will be able to to continue our close discussions with AMPAS and the BFI and reach our ambition which would be for to align a set of standards which would apply worldwide," BAFTA's film committee chair, Marc Samuelson, told THR.

While BAFTA is able to easily implement its Diversity Standards on the British categories, overseen by the BFI, it isn't able do the same for films made outside the U.K. With AMPAS set to deploy its own set of standards, this would help ensure all its categories were covered. 

As for the standards being discussed and drawn up by AMPAS, BAFTA's Samuelson says much of the groundwork has already been covered by the BFI. 

"I would certainly recommend to AMPAS that they can achieve a massive shortcut by basing the standards on the BFI's work," he said.