Ahead of the EE BAFTA Film Awards next month, BAFTA launches Countdown to the BAFTAs: the new official 10-part podcast series providing a deep dive into the 10 longlisted films in contention for Best Film.
Hosted by TV presenter and film journalist Alex Zane, Countdown to the BAFTAs delves into the making of this year’s longlisted Best Films through exclusive interviews with the producers who brought them to life.
The longlisted films in the Best Film category this year are: All of Us Strangers; Anatomy Of A Fall; Barbie; The Holdovers; Killers Of The Flower Moon; Maestro; Oppenheimer; Past Lives; Poor Things and The Zone Of Interest.
The podcast is aimed at film fans and BAFTA voters (comprised of industry peers), with in-depth interviews that shine a light on the inspiration, the talent and the craft behind this year’s hottest movies, according to BAFTA members.
Guests confirmed to-date include: Graham Broadbent & Sarah Harvey (All Of Us Strangers), Marie-Ange Luciani & David Thion (Anatomy Of A Fall), Margot Robbie (Barbie), Daniel Lupi (Killers Of The Flower Moon), Bradley Cooper (Maestro), Emma Thomas (Oppenheimer), Pamela Koffler (Past Lives), Andrew Lowe & Ed Guiney (Poor Things), and James Wilson (The Zone Of Interest).
The interviews will explore how the projects came about, whether original or adapted screenplays. They uncover the challenges faced in taking stories from the page to the big screen and the pivotal creative and commercial decisions made throughout the filmmaking process.
The series was recorded at BAFTA’s new podcast studio in the Kenworthy room at BAFTA’s HQ in Piccadilly in the heart of London. It will be released in two stages on all key podcast directories, including Apple, Acast, Spotify, among others. The first five episodes will publish when nominations are announced on 18 January 2024 12pm (GMT) at BAFTA by former EE Rising Star nominees Naomi Ackie and Kingsley Ben-Adir. The second tranche of episodes will publish after the awards show on 18 February.
Teasers of all 10 episodes will appear from today on leading UK film podcasts including Kermode and Mayo, Something Rhymes with Purple, and Where There’s a Will There’s a Wake.
Alex Zane is an award-winning film journalist, broadcaster and writer who has been the host of Sky Cinema for over a decade, presenting his movie series Alex Zane’s Guest List, plus their annual live Oscars coverage in conjunction with the Academy Awards, as well as interviewing actors and filmmakers for his 60-minute talk show, Reel Life. He started his career at MTV presenting TRL: UK before moving to Channel 4 to become part of the acclaimed prank show Balls of Steel, later hosting T4’s Popworld and late-night comedy show Rude Tube, as well as BBC show Celebrity Scissorhands for Children in Need.
Production of the podcast series is by Rethink Audio, the team who launched Happy Place and The High Performance Podcast, and have a relationship with BAFTA spanning two decades.
Host, Alex Zane, said: “As one of the world’s most respected awards bodies, BAFTA is in the enviable position of being able to secure the time of the people who know more about this year’s Best Films and how they were made than anyone else in the world – the people who produced them. As a massive film fan, it is an absolute treat to delve into the detail and uncover never-before-shared stories behind such a phenomenal selection of films for BAFTA’s new podcast. We hope it will be a useful new resource for BAFTA’s global voting membership but also something to enjoy for anyone interested in films and the process of filmmaking today.”
BAFTA CEO Jane Millichip, said: “The 10 longlisted Best Films are a fantastic representation of filmmaking from the past year – British and international stories, blockbusters, independent titles, foreign language, and even a directing debut. Bold, original, entertaining and challenging, Countdown to the BAFTAs will offer new insights for our 7,800 BAFTA voters and film fans alike. We are enormously grateful to the producers who have given their time and wisdom during a ridiculously busy awards season. If you need any reminder of the importance of film to our culture and creative industries, look no further than the 2024 EE BAFTA Film Awards longlist, and check out Countdown to the BAFTAs.”
Find more information about the Countdown to the BAFTAs podcast here.
The EE BAFTA Film Awards voting takes place over three rounds: Longlisting, Nominations and Winners, by BAFTA’s global voting membership, comprising over 7,800 creatives and film industry practitioners. The latest demographic information on BAFTA’s membership is available here.
BAFTA announced the longlists of films and talent (culmination of Round One voting which began on 8 December 2023) on 5 January 2024. Round Two voting closed on 12 January – which determines the nominations, to be unveiled this Thursday. Round Three of voting will determine the winners. They will be announced on 18 February from the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall in London, as part of an unmissable celebration of film hosted by David Tennant.
The EE BAFTA Film Awards will be broadcast on Sunday 18 February, on BBC One and iPlayer in the UK, and on BritBox International in USA, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway and South Africa. With more international territories to be confirmed.
Follow the action at #EEBAFTAs.