Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 25 November 2020

Egyptian-British actor Amir El-Masry named in 2020 Bafta Breakthrough group

Bafta works with Breakthrough participants to 'create a tailored year of support, mentoring and career development'

Amir El-Masry at a screening of ‘The Arabian Warrior’ in Dubai in 2018. Pawan Singh / The National 
Amir El-Masry at a screening of ‘The Arabian Warrior’ in Dubai in 2018. Pawan Singh / The National 

Egyptian-British actor Amir El-Masry has been chosen as a Bafta Breakthrough talent by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (Bafta).

The accolade "showcases and supports the next generation of creative talent in film, games and television in the UK, China, India and the US," says Bafta.

The Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker actor tweeted his thanks to the academy, writing: "Thank you @BAFTA for your continuous support – a privilege to be amongst these incredible creatives and be a #baftabreakthrough Brit this year alongside [Limbo director and producer] Ben Sharrock and Irune Gurtubai".

El-Masry stars in Limbo, an offbeat comedy by Scottish writer-director Sharrock which premiered in Toronto and will be shown at the Cairo International Film Festival next month. The film follows four Syrian asylum seekers on a faraway island in Scotland as they enrol in cultural awareness classes while they wait for their application for political asylum to be processed.

Amir El Masry, right, and Vikash Bhai in 'Limbo' (2020). IMDb
Amir El-Masry, right, and Vikash Bhai in 'Limbo' (2020). IMDb

"Breakthrough identifies the most exciting new talent coming up in the film, games and television industries and gives them access to unique career development and mentoring opportunities," the academy explains on its website. "Bafta gives talented individuals bespoke support at their critical ‘breakthrough’ career moment, enabling them to build on their success and ensuring their continued development in their chosen field."

Those in the UK's Breakthrough group will receive a one-year voting Bafta membership, which gives them access to Bafta events and screenings and access to the members' space in London.

Participants were selected by a jury including filmmaker, Amma Asante; British Vogue editor, Edward Enninful; Feel Good actor, Melissa Johns and Killing Eve's Fiona Shaw.

"We are thrilled to be announcing our first ever Bafta Breakthrough participants in the USA alongside those, for our seventh year, in the UK. This year’s cohort is such a strong and inclusive list, revealing the future stars of our industries," Amanda Berry OBE, chief executive of Bafta said of the participants. "We are delighted to be partnering with Netflix again this year which is supporting the global expansion of Breakthrough into the USA and India. Netflix shares our vision to raise awareness of and celebrate emerging talent from an array of different backgrounds and cultures."

Updated: November 17, 2020 05:04 PM

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