0831 GMT December 11, 2019
The BBC's historical series 'Wolf Hall' — which was aired on PBS in the US — entered the night ahead of the pack, with four nominations, including one for its recently-minted Oscar winner Mark Rylance. The actor, whose turn as calculating statesmen Thomas Cromwell in the adaptation of Hilary Mantel's books was a hugely critically acclaimed, went up against 'Luther' by Idris Elba in the leading actor category, as they had done in the BAFTA film awards supporting category just three months earlier (Rylance won that round), hollywoodreporter.com reported.
'Wolf Hall' ended up winning the best drama award, and Rylance beating Elba again to walk away with the best actor honor. The series director Peter Kosminsky used his opportunity on stage to take aim at the government attacks on the BBC, saying that it was attempting to 'eviscerate' something that was the envy of the world.
"We should stand up and fight for it, not let it go by default. And if we don't, blink and it will be gone," he said, adding that there would be 'no more 'Wolf Hall'.
Amazon beat out Netflix as 'Transparent' earned the award for best international series, with Jeffrey Tambor accepting the honor. Netflix's 'Narcos' had been among the other nominees.
In supporting categories, this time it was the turn of the elder statesmen, with Tom Courtenay ('Unforgotten') shortlisted alongside Ian McKellen, incredibly earning his first ever BAFTA TV short nomination, for 'The Dresser'. Courtenay won the BAFTA to much applause.
Other guests on the night included Hugh Bonneville, Maisie Williams, Justin Timberlake, Martin Freeman, Mark Gatiss, Sharon Horgan and Tom Hiddleston. Mark Rylance and 'Wolf Hall' were among the high profile winners.