BAFTA moves U.K. TV awards to summer

Adds supporting actress and actor categories

LONDON -- BAFTA is moving its television awards ceremony to the summer and adding best supporting actress and actor categories to its roll call of nods, organizers said Wednesday.

The awards, the biggest night in the U.K. television calendar, will move from spring to summer in a move that aims to reflect more recently aired programming among the nominations and winners, as well as give the awards a more prominent role in the calendar.

The 2010 British Academy Television Awards will take place on June 6 at the historic London Palladium, and air on BBC1 later that night.

The British Academy Television Craft Awards will also shift forwards from spring to summer from 2010, taking place on May 23.

The shift means that programs that air in the year up until March 31 will be eligible for nomination and a new system will allow BAFTA members to view all nominations and entries online. It also means that the awards will not get lost in the cluster of high-profile ceremonies including the BAFTA film awards and the Academy Awards that take place in spring.

"We are delighted to be introducing these changes for 2010. As a committee, we annually review all categories to ensure the ceremony is relevant to, and reflects, the industry's output, and these additional categories do exactly that," said John Willis, chairman of the television committee, announcing the changes.

"Moreover, our move to June provides a more distinct place in the awards calendar for Television and allows more time between them and February's Orange British Academy Film Awards for our members, industries and viewers," he added.

The 2010 awards will also see the comedy performance category divide into two, recognizing both female performance in a comedy program and male performance in a comedy program for the first time.