Wunmi Mosaku Picks Up Her First BAFTA TV Award (UK Equivalent of the Emmys)
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Awards , Television

Wunmi Mosaku Picks Up Her First BAFTA TV Award (UK Equivalent of the Emmys)

Wunmi Mosaku wins Supporting Actress | BAFTA TV Awards 2017 Wunmi Mosaku wins Supporting Actress | BAFTA TV Awards 2017

The ceremony for the 2017 British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) TV Awards - which are essentially the UK version of the Primetime Emmys in the USA - were held today, May 14, 2017, in London. The 2-hour ceremony aired on BBC One.

Winners of note, with respect to this blog's interests, include Wunmi Mosaku, who won the Best Supporting Actress BAFTA TV Award for her role in the BBC One movie, "Damilola, Our Loved Boy." It's both the first BAFTA nomination and obviously first win for the 30-year-old actress, so she's only just getting started.

Recent credits US audiences will know include Showtime's maligned John Ridley series, "Guerrilla"; she's also in the "Playtest" episode of the most recent season of the anthology series "Black Mirror," which is streaming on Netflix. And those of you who have watched the 3-hour extended cut/Ultimate Edition of "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" (not the one that was actually released in theaters), may remember her playing a character named Kahina Ziri, an actual character from the DC Comics universe, who, according to the DC Comics wiki, is blackmailed by Lex Luthor into testifying against Superman. She also apparently has superpowers of her own. Again, per the DC Comics Universe wiki, Kahina is not a major character, but she is a key player in Aquaman's timeline, known as "the Seer," and gifted with the powers of prophecy. She was a member of the superhero group The Others, often fighting alongside Aquaman and her ally Ya'Wara, known as protector of the rainforests and their inhabitants. Kahina faces the villainous Black Manta in battle, using her precognition to fight, dodging poison darts. In the upcoming Aquaman movie, Black Manta is the main villain, and he's going to be played by Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, star of Netflix's "The Get Down." So could Kahina Ziri also make an appearance in the Aquaman movie, and maybe even play a bigger role so that her scenes don't end up on the cutting room floor as they did in the case of the theatrical release of "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice"? Time will tell.

For now, to see some of Wunmi Mosaku's past work, check out "Black Mirror" or "Guerrilla," for programs that are readily available in the US.  She also appeared alongside Chiwetel Ejiofor in 2013's "Dancing on the Edge," which is on various home video formats.

Back to the BAFTA TV Awards...

Programme Name: Damilola, Our Loved Boy - TX: n/a - Episode: Our Loved Boy (First Look) (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: Richard Taylor (BABOU CEESAY), Gloria Taylor (WUNMI MOSAKU) - (C) Minnow Films - Photographer: Steffan Hill "Damilola, Our Loved Boy" - Richard Taylor (BABOU CEESAY), Gloria Taylor (WUNMI MOSAKU). (C) Minnow Films - Photographer: Steffan Hill

"Damilola, Our Loved Boy" also won the BAFTA TV Award for Best Single drama.

We covered the film on this blog last fall, when it premiered on BBC One. It has yet to premiere on any US network or streaming platform (at least, none that I am aware of based on my research), although I wouldn't be surprised if it eventually lands on Netflix, Hulu or Amazon in the next few months, especially after tonight's wins.

The film tells the real-life tragic story of Damilola Taylor, whose family moved from Lagos, Nigeria to London in search of better lives for themselves in the year 2000. That same year, Damilola was killed on November 27 – just 10 days before his 11th birthday. He left a computer class before walking home when two youths stabbed him with a broken bottle. He was found bleeding to death in a stairwell, having left a 30-meter trail of blood as he tried to crawl to safety. Brothers Danny and Ricky Preddie, aged 12 and 13 at the time, were convicted of manslaughter six years later. Each got eight years in juvenile detention for the attack, which they say happened as they tried to steal the coat Damilola was wearing shortly before his death. It was a tragedy that scarred the nation and generated headlines worldwide.

Written by award-winning screenwriter and playwright Levi David Addai, "Damilola, Our Loved Boy" tells the story of Damilola and his family, exploring their journey from Lagos to London, the emotional repercussions of Damilola's death, and the family’s quest for justice.

Damilola is played in the film by 12-year-old newcomer Sammy Kamara, born and raised in South London.

Babou Ceesay is Damilola’s father, Richard Taylor OBE; and portraying Richard’s late wife, Gloria, is Wunmi Mosaku.

In total, the film was nominated for: Best Leading Actor (Babou Ceesay); Best Single Drama; Best Supporting Actress (Mosaku); Best Director - Fiction (Euros Lyn); and Best Writer - Drama (Levi David Addai).

Another winner of note of the night was "American Crime Story: The People Vs OJ Simpson" which won the BAFTA TV Award for Best International Program. On hand to receive the trophy was star of the series, Cuba Gooding, Jr.

Below, watch both acceptance speeches - the first from Mosaku; followed by Gooding, Jr. A trailer for "Damilola, Our Loved Boy" is also below.

And here's the trailer for "Damilola, Our Loved Boy."