Barry Norman, 21 August 1933 – 30 June 2017
UK film fans were disappointed last night when the EE BAFTAs failed to honour legendary film critic Barry Norman during the In Memoriam segment of the awards show.
Every year the British Film Academy honours the influential members of the film industry who passed away since the previous year’s awards in a moving montage. This year’s tributes – scored by a stirring performance of ‘Evening of Roses’ by Sheku Kanneh-Mason and his siblings – included Sir Roger Moore, Jonathan Demme, Harry Dean Stanton, and many more illustrious names who passed away over the last 12 months.
Many people were quick to point out though that Barry Norman, who hosted the BBC’s flagship film review show Film… from 1972 to 1998 but sadly died in 2017, had been overlooked by the tribute. Norman was himself a BAFTA-winner having won the Richard Dimbleby award for Best Presenter at the TV awards in 1981.
Film critic Jason Solomons pointed out the #baftafail, calling the omission “dreadful”, and he wasn’t the only who noticed.
— Jason Solomons (@JasonCritic) February 18, 2018
— Little Joe Media (@littlejoemedia) February 18, 2018
— Tina Foote #FBPE (@tinabf) February 18, 2018
BAFTA have since responded to the criticism over Barry Norman saying there simply wasn’t time to honour the critic during the obituary section of the show. The British Academy has also promised to honour Norman during the Television Awards in May.
Due to the limited time for the televised obits, unfortunately it isn’t possible to honour all those who have passed away. Barry Norman received a BAFTA Special Award for his contribution to TV & will be considered for inclusion in the Television Awards broadcast later this year
— BAFTA (@BAFTA) February 19, 2018
Barry Norman CBE died on 30 June, 2017 aged 83. He is the longest-running host of BBC One’s Film… show that is currently presented by a rotating set of presenters and critics including Danny Leigh and Lauren Laverne.
Norman began his career as a journalist writing for the Daily Mail, Observer, and Guardian before heading up the Beeb’s flagship film show in 1972. He eventually left the network in 1998 to host a film show on Sky.