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BAFTA 2021 Film Awards: Academy pays tribute to Prince Philip who has a ‘very special place in their history’ after serving as the first ever president – photo, video

The British Film Academy has paid tribute to the late Prince Philip during Sunday’s star-studded Awards ceremony.

Hosts Dermott O’Leary and Edith Bowman read a touching message which explained that the royal had a ‘very special place in BAFTA history’ after he served as the first president from 1959 to 1965.

Prince Philip died at the age of 99 on Friday and his grandson the Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge is the academy’s current president.

Video:

Dermott started the tribute saying: ‘Before we start tonight we want to say that on behalf of BAFTA, we are extremely saddened by the passing of his royal highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, on Friday.

‘The Duke was BAFTA’s very first president over 60 years ago and was the first royal patron, a line that goes all the way through to BAFTA’s current president, his grandson the Duke of Cambridge.

Edith then paid her respects and continued: ‘It was Prince Philip and her Majesty the Queen’s support throughout these years that in many ways allowed BAFTA, a leading charity in the arts, to continue in difficult times and to be here today in 2021.

‘The Duke of Edinburgh occupies a very special place in BAFTA history and he will be missed. Our thoughts are with the royal family.’

Touching: The British Film Academy has paid tribute to the late Prince Philip during Sunday's star-studded Awards ceremony (pictured hosts Edith Bowman and Dermott O'Leary)

Touching: The British Film Academy has paid tribute to the late Prince Philip during Sunday’s star-studded Awards ceremony (pictured hosts Edith Bowman and Dermott O’Leary)

Honouring him: Prince Philip died at the age of 99 on Friday and his grandson the Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge is the academy's current president

Honouring him: Prince Philip died at the age of 99 on Friday and his grandson the Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge is the academy’s current president

Clara Amfo also took a moment to pay tribute to the late Prince Philip during the first night of the BAFTAs on Saturday.

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Speaking directly to the camera, Clara read out the same tribute as Sunday’s hosts and honoured the late Duke’s contribution to the academy.

Current BAFTA President Prince William was due to be making an appearance on both Saturday and Sunday, however will no longer be featuring in the event.

He was to deliver a speech via video, celebrating the resilience of the film industry over the past year.

Involved: Host Dermott O'Leary read a message which explained that the royal had a 'very special place in BAFTA history' after he served as the first president from 1959 to 1965

Involved: Host Dermott O’Leary read a message which explained that the royal had a ‘very special place in BAFTA history’ after he served as the first president from 1959 to 1965

Important: Edith added that the Prince's support  'throughout these years that in many ways allowed BAFTA, a leading charity in the arts, to continue in difficult times'

Important: Edith added that the Prince’s support  ‘throughout these years that in many ways allowed BAFTA, a leading charity in the arts, to continue in difficult times’

BAFTA said in a statement: ‘In light of the Duke of Edinburgh’s passing, the Duke of Cambridge will no longer be part of BAFTA programming this weekend.

‘Our thoughts are with the royal family, to whom we offer our deepest sympathy at this time’.

The Duke of Edinburgh was BAFTA’s first president, serving from 1959 to 1965, and continued to support the organisation throughout his life.

Prince Philip was named president in 1959, one year after the British Film Academy and the Guild of Television Producers and Directors merged to create the Society of Film and Television Arts (SFTA), a forerunner of BAFTA.

He was also present at the official opening of BAFTA’s headquarters in London, after he and the Queen gave their share of the profits from the 1969 documentary Royal Family to the SFTA.

Forrás

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