Friday 22 March 2019

WATCH: Brian F O'Byrne dedicates TV Bafta to murdered boy Rhys Jones and thanks Britain for 'looking after our women in their time of need'

Brian F. O’Byrne starred in the ITV drama Lilttle Boy Blue (Ian West/PA)
Brian F. O’Byrne starred in the ITV drama Lilttle Boy Blue (Ian West/PA)

Julia Hunt

Actor Brian F. O'Byrne has dedicated his Bafta TV award to murdered school boy Rhys Jones, whose father he played in ITV drama Little Boy Blue.

Rhys, 11, was gunned down on his way home from football practice in Croxteth, Liverpool, in 2007.

O'Byrne won the best supporting actor prize at Sunday night's ceremony for his powerful portrayal of Steve Jones in the moving series.

Looking stunned as he collected the award, the actor said: "It's kind of difficult to get an award, to play somebody who is living and who is at home tonight, like the nights of the last 10 years, suffering grief at the loss of their child."

He thanked Steve Jones and Rhys's mother Melanie and said: "I would like to dedicate this to your young child Rhys, who was tragically lost."

The actor thanked the city of Liverpool for embracing the story and expressed his gratitude to the crew "who knew that they were dealing with something that was such a tragedy".

The actor said he had not prepared a speech, adding: "I'm in shock".

However, before he left the stage, O'Byrne added, "On a personal thing I'd like to thank the staff at the Liverpool Women's Hospital for looking after my fellow Irish citizens who come there in distress daily.  And thank you Britain for looking after our women in their time of need."

The actor beat Adrian Dunbar (Line Of Duty), Anupam Kher (The Boy With The Topknot) and Black Mirror's Jimmi Simpson to win the supporting actor award.

Here are the main winners:

Leading Actress
Molly Windsor (Three Girls)

Leading Actor
Sean Bean (Broken)

Supporting Actor
Brian F. O’Byrne (Little Boy Blue)

Supporting Actress
Vanessa Kirby (The Crown)

Three Girls

Scripted Comedy
This Country

Entertainment Performance
Graham Norton

Drama Series
Peaky Blinders

Single Drama
Murdered For Being Different

Soap & Continuing Drama

Entertainment Programme
Britain’s Got Talent

Comedy Entertainment Programme
Murder in Successville

BAFTA for Reality & Constructed Factual
Love Island

The Handmaid’s Tale

Cruising with Jane McDonald

Short Form Programme
Morgana Robinson’s Summer

News Coverage
Sky News’ The Rohingya Crisis

Current Affairs
Undercover: Britain’s Immigration Secrets (Panorama)

Factual Series

Single Documentary
Rio Ferdinand: Being Mum And Dad

Specialist Factual
Basquiat – Rage To Riches

Female Performance in a Comedy Programme
Daisy May Cooper (This Country)

Male Performance in a Comedy Programme
Toby Jones (Detectorists)

The Grand National

Live Event
World War One Remembered: Passchendaele

The Special Award
John Motson OBE

The Fellowship
Kate Adie OBE

Virgin TV’s Must-See Moment
Blue Planet II for the “Mother Pilot Whale Grieves” moment

Press Association

Editors Choice

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