Michaela Coel alludes to abuse in the industry in powerful BAFTA TV Awards speech

I May Destroy You: Michaela Coel stars in trailer for new series

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Michaela Coel, 33, won two major awards at the BAFTA TV Awards, including the gong for lead actress. She dedicated her win to the intimacy coordinator for I May Destroy as she discussed abuse in the industry.

The actor thanked Ita O’Brien who she worked with on the show in the powerful speech.

She said: “Thank you for your existence in our industry, for making the space safe.

“For creating physical, emotional and professional boundaries so that we can make work about exploitation, loss of respect, about abuse of power without being exploited or abused in the process.”

Michaela then continued to speak out against not using intimacy coordinators when filming sex scenes.

She added: “I know what it is like to shoot without an intimacy director.

“The messy, embarrassing feeling for the crew. The internal devastation for the actor.

“Your direction was essential to my show and I believe essential for every production company that wants to make work exploring themes of consent.”

I May Destroy You followed Michaela’s character Arabella as she comes to terms with her sexual assault.

The harrowing BBC and HBO drama tackles issues of rape, sexual violence and consent.

Michaela spoke out earlier this year in solidarity after sexual misconduct allegations were levelled against Noel Clarke.

She said in a social media statement: “I am here to support great support for the 20 brave women who have come forward; those who have shared their identities with us, but also those who have preferred to use an alias.

“The mental hurdles a black woman must overcome to do such a thing as reveal their identity within a narrative of rape abuse or bullying at the hands of someone within our own community can sometimes be too much.”

Clarke issued an apology on April 30 but denied sexual misconduct.

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Elsewhere at the BAFTAs, I May Destory you also won best mini-series.

At the BAFTA Craft Awards a few weeks ago, Michaela also won for directing and writing.

The show triumphed against Small Axe, Normal People and Adult Material.

Paul Mescal scooped the award for Best Actor for his role as Connell Waldron in Normal People.

Best male perfomance in a comedy went to Charlie Cooper for BBC Three’s This Country.

While Aimee Lou Wood won for best female comedy performance for Netflix series Sex Education

Dance group Diversity one the only award voted for by the public on the night.

This was the Must See Moment for their powerful performance on Britain’s Got Talent.

Please Rape Crisis’ website here for help and advice. 

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