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Mr Turner filmmaker Mike Leigh to be honoured with the BAFTA Fellowship

03 February 2015

It has been announced that The British Academy of Film and Television Arts will present Mike Leigh with the BAFTA Fellowship.

The fellowship is the highest honour awarded by the Academy and is given to individuals in recognition of an exception contribution to film, television and games.

Previous recipients include include Charlie Chaplin, Alfred Hitchcock, Steven Spielberg, Sean Connery, Elizabeth Taylor, Stanley Kubrick, Anthony Hopkins, Laurence Olivier, Judi Dench, Vanessa Redgrave, Christopher Lee, Martin Scorsese and Alan Parker. Helen Mirren received the Fellowship at last year’s film awards.

Leigh’s incredibly successful career began at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, at the Camberwell and Central Schools of Art and at the London Film School, of which he is now the chairman.

He has won three BAFTAS as well as being the recipient of a BAFTA Special Award for outstanding British contribution to cinema and a John Schlesinger Britannia Award for Excellence from BAFTA Los Angeles last year.

He has seven Academy Award nominations and has won Cannes’ Palme D’Or for “Secrets & Lies,” and Venice’s Golden Lion for “Vera Drake.”

Leigh’s first feature film was “Bleak Moments”; this was followed by the full-length television films Hard Labour, Nuts in May, The Kiss of Death, Who’s Who, Grown-Ups, Home Sweet Home, Meantime and Four Days in July, as well as the television studio version of Abigail’s Party.

Leigh’s other feature films are BAFTA-nominated “Naked” and BAFTA-winning “Secrets & Lies” (for outstanding British film and original screenplay), which also received five Academy Award nominations and two Golden Globe nominations, and “Career Girls,” “Topsy-Turvy,” “All or Nothing,” “Vera Drake” (for which he won BAFTA for director), “Happy-Go-Lucky” and “Another Year.”

Most recently he has written and directed “Mr. Turner,” which received four nominations at this year’s British Academy Film Awards and four Academy Award nominations.

Chief executive of BAFTA, Amanda Berry, described Leigh as “one of Britain’s finest filmmakers.” She added: “He is a true innovator, an artist and an exceptional filmmaker.”

Leigh has also written and directed over 20 stage plays.

The BAFTA awards ceremony will be hosted on February 8th 2015