Since my last post I’ve won a BAFTA – yay! It was for Gigglebiz, a CBeebies sketch show I worked on as script editor/writer which won the Children’s BAFTA 2015 for Best Comedy. Here’s a photo of me with said BAFTA just after I won it. Don’t I look happy:
And this is a photo of me with (from left) one of the show’s directors Geoff Coward, producer Anna Perowne, the genius star of Gigglebiz Justin Fletcher, exec producer Vanessa Amberleigh, and another rather talented comedy sketch writer who presented us with our awards by the name of Michael Palin:
And finally here’s a photo of my BAFTA alongside my cat. As you can see, the cat isn’t overly impressed by awards. Also please note that we recycle:
It’s been a few months now since we won but I thought I’d make a few BAFTA-related observations:
(1) A BAFTA is darn heavy. The bronze mask and marble base weighs just over eight pounds. That’s more that the cat in the above photo (for the record, Bonbon weighs seven pounds exactly, at least she did last time we visited the vet). Watch carefully next time when the awards are on TV for the moment when they hand over the mask; see how many people aren’t expecting the weight and nearly drop it.
And woe betide anyone who tries to rob my house while I’m home. A BAFTA is perfect for knocking cold the average home invader.
(2) Everyone who comes to your house wants to hold your BAFTA. A significant proportion aren’t anticipating the weight so nearly drop said BAFTA.
(3) When you receive your BAFTA, someone at the awards discreetly takes you aside backstage and warns you not to get super-drunk and leave it in a taxi. I guess this probably happens with surprising regularity. I do wonder if there’s a significant number of London cabbies with BAFTAs in their downstairs loo: “Last week I ‘ad that Michael Fassbender in the back of my cab. Fella must’ve ‘ad a few pints, and he only forgot ‘is bloomin’ BAFTA!”
(4) Apparently “my” BAFTA is technically still the property of the academy, meaning they can take it back anytime that takes their fancy. Presumably if I murdered a home invader with it and ended up in jail (despite pleading self-defence) this might well happen. So far they’ve let me keep it, which is very kind.
(5) I’ve just done a quick Google and as far as I can tell, no one has ever actually killed anyone with a BAFTA. Given the weight of it and the number of short-tempered crazy actor types who have one or more in their houses I find this quite amazing.
(6) Although I have this BAFTA on my mantelpiece since it’s mine (although apparently it’s not – see point (4) above) I’m only too aware that the award is for all the talented comedy writers who worked on Gigglebiz Series 4. Looking back on my notes we commissioned a whopping 286 minutes of sketch material from a team of fifteen writers. A sketch show lives or dies by the quality of the writing (hell, any narrative comedy or drama does) and when you’re producing twenty-six fifteen-minute episodes in a fairly short period of time, it’s vital to have a strong team of writers. That we certainly had on Gigglebiz – so this award is as much for all of you as it is for me. You know who you are, and I love each and every one of you. But it’s still staying on my mantelpiece, obvs.
(7) I must thank the rest of the cast, production team and crew that made Gigglebiz such a successful show – not least Anna Perowne our amazing producer, our wonderful exec at CBeebies Vanessa Amberleigh, and directors Geoff Ward, Damian Farrell and Jack Jameson. A sketch show like Gigglebiz is truly a team effort.
(8) And finally, I have to mention the supremely talented star of Gigglebiz: the one and only Justin Fletcher. Although us writers can aim to deliver funny scripts, we depend on Justin to deliver his usual performing brilliance. He plays every major character – male and female – on the show, and it’s a testament to his genius that a significant proportion of the pre-school audience actually don’t realise all these different characters are played by him alone. So thanks Justin; you’re the heart and soul of Gigglebiz, and if it wasn’t for your awesome comedy chops I wouldn’t have this shiny lump of metal and granite sitting on my mantelpiece and repelling potential burglars.