My Week: Amanda Berry, Development Director of BAFTA

Monday

We are staging the 51st British Academy Awards on Sunday and as it is only six days away, we are all working flat out. It's a bank holiday for most of the country but I go to the office. Working on a bank holiday is bliss, the phones don't ring and for the first time in weeks there is a sense of calm in the office. But the dry cleaners is shut!

I ring my mum to wish her a happy birthday. She is going to be my guest at the awards so we have a long conversation about frocks, when she is going to arrive and who will be sitting at our table. By 6pm I can see the colour of my desk and my in-tray is only half full. I get home by 8.30 (a rare treat), catch up on last week's newspapers and lose myself in Nancherrow on ITV.

Tuesday

An interview I did last week appears in The Express and I get lots of calls from friends who realise how hard I have been working and why I haven't been in touch. Diane (my assistant) and I have the final production meeting with Peter Estall and his team at the BBC, who are televising the awards. I am able to confirm that Gwyneth Paltrow is definitely coming, with her parents, which is wonderful news.

I chair a production meeting for 50 people at the Business Design Centre in Islington, north London, our venue for the awards, to discuss all the arrangements. The build-up for the event has started and suddenly it all seems terribly real. I go back to the office to make the final arrangements for Elizabeth Taylor's arrival tomorrow. Elizabeth is receiving The Fellowship, which is the Academy's most prestigious award.

My daily diet seems to consist solely of Creme Eggs and biscuits and I still have not managed to pick up my dry cleaning.

Wednesday

Roberto Benigni has confirmed he will attend the ceremony which is terrific news. I spend the morning clearing paperwork and finalising table plans - that is, until they change again. I rush out at lunchtime to have my legs waxed - the things a girl has to do.

I get a message to say that Elizabeth Taylor has arrived in London which means all our plans worked. My in-tray is overflowing but I take a few minutes to reply to e-mails from friends who want to know how everything is going. As my situation is desperate, I beg them to send me some chocolate. I don't manage to leave the office until 11.30pm, by which time I have missed Film 99 with Jonathan Ross which is doing a big feature on the awards.

Thursday

I finally remember to pick up my dry cleaning. I attend an early meeting at the Dorchester to discuss the press conference for Elizabeth Taylor. I then go up to the Business Design Centre which is really starting to take shape now, the ceiling has been blacked out with star cloth, and the huge gauzes on which we are going to project archive film clips are now in place.

I spend the afternoon signing off press releases. It is terrific to be able to sign off a release announcing that stars like Michael Caine, Pierce Brosnan, Richard E Grant, Cate Blanchett, Jane Horrocks and Gwyneth Paltrow will all be attending. A huge Jiffy bag full of chocolate arrives from my friends.

Friday

I receive a copy of the BBC script, which I can't wait to read. I grab a cab to go over to the Dorchester for the Elizabeth Taylor press conference - it is absolutely packed. Then I go to the Business Design Centre where they are doing a piece about final preparations for the evening news. The venue looks amazing.

I then go back to the Academy for a dinner hosted by Kodak in honour of the nominees in the cinematography and editing categories. After the dinner I go back to the office for a while and finally fall into bed in the early hours of Saturday morning.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Feeling all at sea: Barbara's 18-year-old son came under the influence of a Canadian libertarian preacher – and she had to fight to win him back
TV review
Arts and Entertainment
Living the high life: Anne Robinson enjoys some skip-surfed soup
TV review
Arts and Entertainment

Great British Bake Off
Arts and Entertainment
Doctor Who and Missy in the Doctor Who series 8 finale

TV
Arts and Entertainment

film
Arts and Entertainment
Chvrches lead singer Lauren Mayberry in the band's new video 'Leave a Trace'

music
Arts and Entertainment

music
Arts and Entertainment
Home on the raunch: George Bisset (Aneurin Barnard), Lady Seymour Worsley (Natalie Dormer) and Richard Worsley (Shaun Evans)

TV review
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Strictly Come Dancing was watched by 6.9m viewers

Strictly
Arts and Entertainment
NWA biopic Straight Outta Compton

film
Arts and Entertainment
Natalie Dormer as Margaery Tyrell and Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones
Arts and Entertainment
New book 'The Rabbit Who Wants To Fall Asleep' by Carl-Johan Forssen Ehrlin

books
Arts and Entertainment
Calvi is not afraid of exploring the deep stuff: loneliness, anxiety, identity, reinvention
music
Arts and Entertainment
Edinburgh solo performers Neil James and Jessica Sherr
comedy
Arts and Entertainment
If a deal to buy tBeats, founded by hip-hop star Dr Dre (pictured) and music producer Jimmy Iovine went through, it would be Apple’s biggest ever acquisition

album review
Arts and Entertainment
Paloma Faith is joining The Voice as a new coach

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Dowton Abbey has been pulling in 'telly tourists', who are visiting Highclere House in Berkshire

TV
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Patriot games: Vic Reeves featured in ‘Very British Problems’
TV review
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

    How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

    Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
    Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

    'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

    In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
    Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

    The Arab Spring reversed

    Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
    King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

    Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

    Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
    Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

    Who is Oliver Bonas?

    It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
    Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

    Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

    However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
    60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

    60 years of Scalextric

    Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
    Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

    Why are we addicted to theme parks?

    Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
    Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

    Iran is opening up again to tourists

    After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
    10 best PS4 games

    10 best PS4 games

    Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
    Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

    Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

    Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
    Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

    ‘Can we really just turn away?’

    Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
    Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

    Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

    ... and not just because of Isis vandalism
    Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

    Girl on a Plane

    An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
    Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

    Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

    The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent