Washington [US], April 11 (ANI): The Duke of Cambridge - Prince William, who is the president of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) since February 2010, has skipped the award ceremony, following the death of his grandfather Prince Philip.
According to Variety, William who attends the award ceremony with his wife and Duchess of Cambridge- Kate Middleton had dropped out his plans set for the event to be with his family after the death of his grandfather Prince Philips who was himself the first president of the organization in 1959.
"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," said BAFTA in a statement.
William was scheduled to lead a pre-recorded conversation at Saturday night's awards ceremony with three-time BAFTA-winning costume designer Jenny Beavan and make up and hair designer Sharon Martin on the struggles of filming in lockdown and the craft of filmmaking in general.
He was also slated to deliver a live virtual speech at the award show's ceremony on Sunday, which is also dropped as according to Variety, the prince felt any involvement would have been inappropriate just a day after the death of Prince Philip.
BAFTA has enjoyed a long history of involvement and support from the Royal Family dating back to 1959, when Her Royal Highness (HRH) Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh, was appointed its first President.
HRH Prince William, The Duke of Cambridge's appointment to BAFTA's presidency in February 2010 follows a long tradition of Royal patronage; all but one (Lord Attenborough, 2001-2010) in its history have been members of the Royal Family.
Prince William was named president in 2010, and took up the mantle from his aunt, and the Queen's daughter, Princess Anne.
Variety reported that the BAFTA Film Awards will air as scheduled on both weekend nights on the BBC, which is returning to normal after blanket coverage of Prince Philip's death upended its regular schedule on Friday.
Gun salutes were fired earlier on Saturday across the UK, in Gibraltar and at sea in memory of the duke, who was a senior figure in the navy before his marriage to Queen Elizabeth. Queues of well-wishers were also observed outside the Buckingham Palace in London, looking to leave flowers at the palace gates. (ANI)