On 2nd March 2012, the National Film and Television School held its annual graduation ceremony, with Academy Award nominee and recent recipient of a BAFTA Outstanding Achievement award, John Hurt, presiding over the Graduation Ceremony and presenting certificates to the NFTS graduates. Amongst the recipients, Lynne Ramsay and Barbara Broccoli OBE were presented with Honorary Fellowships for their outstanding contribution to the British film and television industry.
Lynne Ramsay and Barbara Broccoli OBE will be joining the distinguished company of NFTS honorary fellows whose achievements are an inspiration to young film and television programme-makers. Previous recipients include Lord Attenborough CBE, David Lean CBE, Nick Park CBE, Alan Parker CBE, Jonathan Ross OBE, Ashley Pharoah, plus NFTS graduate, David Yates, Director of the final Harry Potter series of films - currently ranked as the third highest grossing film of all time.
The NFTS show, sponsored by YouTube, is a yearly event that showcases NFTS animation, documentary fiction, and TV entertainment shows to the industry. Last year, the students’ work went on to receive an Oscar nomination and won a prestigious BAFTA award. This year’s show, held at BFI on the London Southbank from 29 February - 2 March, a ‘must attend’ event for the film and television production industries, was no different. Last year’s NFTS Animation Abuelas secured a BAFTA nomination in 2012, making the NFTS the only school with a nomination in the animation short category. This is the second consecutive year that an NFTS student film has received a BAFTA nomination. Last year, NFTS student film, Until the River Runs Red, won the BAFTA Award. Documentary, The Betrayal, which was shown at this year’s NFTS Show, has already won Best Student Documentary at IDFA, the world’s largest documentary film festival and there is also interest from a number of major UK terrestrial broadcasters to secure the screening rights. Other highlights at the 2012 show were screenings in 3D.
Speaking at the ceremony John Hurt told the graduates how Noel Coward had once given him a book, signing it with the message ‘press on!’ He said that this single piece of advice is what he would pass on to them as they embarked upon their careers in the film industry.
NFTS graduate and honorary fellowship recipient, Lynne Ramsay, is an award winning film Director with a fresh and innovative voice in British independent filmmaking. Lynne Ramsay won the 1996 Cannes Prix de Jury for her graduation film, the short Small Deaths and her debut feature film, Ratcatcher (1999), won both critical acclaim and numerous awards, including the Guardian New Director prize. She also won the Carl Foreman Award for Newcomer in British Film at the 2000 BAFTA Awards and her latest hit film, We Need to Talk about Kevin, received three BAFTA nominations and was recently named Best Picture at the London BFI Film Festival.
On being awarded her Honorary Fellowship Lynne Ramsay said, "Thank you to the NFTS. There is no school like you in the world! It was wonderful to be able to experiment in such a special environment and make invaluable relationships with the filmmakers I met there and still work with today."
Acclaimed film producer, Barbara Broccoli OBE, is best known for her achievements as producer of the Bond film franchise, and continues to drive the successful franchise as it enters its 50th year. Barbara has also been a long-standing personal supporter of the NFTS. In her role as Chair at First Light she also plays an important role in encouraging the next generation of filmmakers from diverse backgrounds to take the first steps into a career in the creative sector.
On receiving her Honorary Fellowship from the NFTS, Barbara Broccoli OBE said, "I feel very honoured to be receiving this fellowship award from the NFTS. NFTS graduates have the credentials to enter the industry with confidence and pride and I look forward to seeing their work on the big screen very soon."
Peter Barron, Director, External Relations EMEA, Google UK said, “We are delighted to sponsor the NFTS Show 2012, showcasing the talents of this year’s graduates. YouTube seeks to help the next generation of creative stars to innovate and thrive online. To that end, we're proud to be partnering with the NFTS, home of some of the UK's best new talent in Film and TV.”
Nik Powell, Director of the NFTS added, “Lynne and Barbara’s contribution to both our industry and the NFTS is truly exceptional and I’m thrilled that they have accepted their awards of NFTS Honorary Fellowships. This year’s Graduation Show proves that, although the bar is set high, it is possible to raise it even further, and we wish all of our graduates every success with their new ventures!”