Actor Benedict Cumberbatch (photo - The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey) has joined the jury of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts' (BAFTA) annual Rising Star Award. Cumberbatch joins jury chair Pippa Harris, Deputy Chairman of BAFTA's Film Committee and producing partner of Sam Mendes (Skyfall), director Kevin Macdonald (Marley), film critic Mark Kermode, casting director Nina Gold (The Iron Lady) and film publicist Kate Lee. Alongside them are film and arts journalists Chris Hewitt, Paul Flynn, Charles Gant, Larushka Ivan-Zadeh and Jonny Pile.
The Rising Star Award jury's role is to select a shortlist of five nominees from the hundreds of submissions made by the BAFTA membership and film industry figures. Cumberbatch said, “This award recognises the British public's passion for film and more importantly gives a boost to up and coming talent, which is so important for cinema. It's a great platform for young actors and actresses to shine and I'm thrilled to be on board.”
The Rising Star Award honours a young actor or actress who has demonstrated exceptional talent and ambition and has begun to capture the imagination of the British public. Previous winners have included Tom Hardy, Kristen Stewart, Noel Clarke, Eva Green and James McAvoy. The award is the only one at the ceremony voted for by members of the public. It was created in honour of Mary Selway, the late BAFTA-winning casting director.
The winner will be announced at the British Academy Film Awards on February 10, 2013.
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