Maggie Smith and Ridley Scott among stars attending BFI television festival

Maggie Smith, Ridley Scott and Poldark star Aidan Turner have joined the line-up of the BFI & Radio Times Television Festival.

They will be joined by The Crown star Claire Foy, Black Mirror creator Charlie Brooker, Victoria actress Jenna Coleman and Maigret star Rowan Atkinson.

The festival will celebrate the current state of TV, with more than 40 events featuring the stars of the small screen.

Aidan Turner (Ian West/PA)

Ridley will appear on stage to discuss the rediscovery of The Author Of Beltraffio, which was directed by his brother Tony Scott, who died in 2012.

The TV drama, which stars Doctor Who actor Tom Baker, has not been seen since it aired in the UK in 1976.

Downton Abbey star Maggie will reflect on her life on stage and screen, while there will be panel discussions with the cast and creators of hit shows including The Crown, Victoria, The Night Manager, Poldark, Doctor Who, Line Of Duty, Strictly Come Dancing and Sherlock.

Ridley (Yui Mok/PA)

There will also be masterclasses with The Body Coach Joe Wicks and lifestyle gurus The Hemsley Sisters, as well as writer Jack Thorne, who will discuss his forthcoming adaptation of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials for the BBC.

Monty Python star Michael Palin and Sherlock and Doctor Who writer Steven Moffat will be inducted into the Radio Times Hall of Fame during the festival, while Julie Walters and Piers Wenger, controller of BBC Drama, will share memories in Victoria Wood: A Tribute.

Keeley Hawes will attend the premiere of the new series of her hit drama The Durrells and Slumdog Millionaire star Freida Pinto will help launch her new series Guerrilla, which also stars Idris Elba and was created by 12 Years A Slave writer John Ridley.

Charlie Brooker and wife Konnie Huq (Jonathan Brady/PA)

The Archers: The Trial Of Helen Titchener will feature appearances from Louiza Patikas and Tim Watson – who played Rob and Helen Titchener – and Sean O’Connor, the former editor of The Archers, to discuss the show’s domestic violence storyline, while the cast and creators of Call The Midwife will also appear on a panel.

Authors Jacqueline Wilson, Michael Morpurgo and Judith Kerr, who have all had work adapted for the small screen, will also appear at the festival.

The BFI & Radio Times Television Festival will take place from April 7 to April 9 at BFI Southbank.

More in this Section

Mel B cancels book signing after breaking ribs and injuring hand

Catherine Zeta-Jones sends message to father-in-law Kirk Douglas as he turns 102

Holly Willoughby – I’m A Celeb has been one-off bit of heaven

Episode titles revealed for third series of Stranger Things


Christmas visitors, log fires and central heating overload – how will your houseplants survive?

6 natural hangover remedies to save you the morning after the office Christmas party

Ask a counsellor: ‘My wife’s new friend has made working from home a challenge’

Making Cents: Prepare financially now for mortgage hunting in 2019

More From The Irish Examiner