The important fashion protest you need to watch out for at the BAFTAs

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Megan Murray
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This year’s BAFTA attendees have been invited to show their support for the Time’s Up initiative. 

When nearly every female attendee of the 2018 Golden Globes ditched colour in favour of making a stand against sexual harassment and assault, the awards ceremony made history.

In an act of solidarity, all but three women donned a uniform of black to show their support for the Time’s Up initiative and convey the powerful message that women will no longer be silenced.

But if you thought the women of Hollywood were going to stop there, you thought wrong.

Actors committed to spreading awareness of the movement are set to step out in all black once again for the 71st British Academy Film Awards (BAFTAs) later this month.

BBC News reports that a letter has been shared with those set to attend the awards ceremony, asking attendees to take up the mantle and wear all black as a sign of unity with victims of sexual abuse and harassment. The event, which celebrates talent in film and television, will be hosted by Joanna Lumley, the first woman to do so in a shocking ten years.

Apparently the request has been enthusiastically accepted by many of the British female actors attending, including proud feminist, UN spokeswoman and leader of the #HeForShe campaign Emma Watson, the first female Doctor Who Jodie Whittaker and Keira Knightley, who spoke out about the prevalence of sexual violence against women in cinema and the lack of female directors just last month.

Other actors expected to join the movement include Star Wars actor Daisy Ridley, Game of Thrones’ Natalie Dormer and Emilia Clarke and James Bond star, Gemma Arterton.

Referencing the inaugural stand at the Golden Globes, the letter galvanised BAFTA attendees “to wear black to the awards ceremony, to follow suit from our sisters who attended the Golden Globes”.

Emma Watson and Marai Larasi at the Golden Globes

Male guests are also invited to take part in the movement and encouraged to wear “special pins and/or a button hole”.

The organisers of the Time’s Up initiave explained why it’s so important that those in the spotlight continue to shine a light on this cause, saying: “more than half of all women and nearly two-thirds of women [in the UK] aged 18 to 24 have experienced sexual harassment at work.

“We hope that those of us privileged enough to have a platform can use it to raise awareness of the experiences of women beyond our industry, whose experiences are often silenced and marginalized.”

Since the Golden Globes some have critisced the celebrities involved over their sartorial choices, questioning whether a dress code stands up as a meaningful protest or if they should have done more.

But the breadth of the message spread by this unifying act, the droves of press coverage and the money made for the Time’s Up Legal Fund from donations and the auctions of the dresses, speaks for itself.

Images: Rex