Paddington star Simon Farnaby paid homage to the record-breaking monarch, who died in September at age 96, in his acceptance speech
Paddington Bear picked up a prize at the 2023 BAFTA TV Awards for his memorable sketch with Queen Elizabeth.
On Sunday, the “Paddington Meets The Queen” skit from Platinum Jubilee: Party at the Palace won the P&O Cruises Memorable Moment Award at the annual television awards show. In the two-and-a-half-minute skit, which aired during Queen Elizabeth‘s Platinum Jubilee concert at Buckingham Palace in June 2022, the late monarch sat with the beloved children’s book character for a cup of tea and some marmalade sandwiches. The prerecorded parody even surprised her family when it opened the concert celebrating her record-breaking 70-year reign.
Paddington actor and writer Simon Farnaby, who starred as the butler in the sweet sketch, honored Queen Elizabeth in his remarks when he accepted the award on stage at The Royal Festival Hall in London. The P&O Cruises Memorable Moment Award is the only honor at the show voted by the public, the cruise line said.
“Our thanks go to the mostly invisible team of wonderful filmmakers who created this lovingly handcrafted moment. I can tell you that Paddington and the Queen had a very joyful Jubilee tea that day, but it was also perhaps a farewell because the person who most deserves this award is no longer with us to receive it,” Farnaby said on stage alongside Ben Whishaw, who voiced Paddington through the film and TV franchise plus the Platinum Jubilee sketch. “We can only accept it on her behalf and say, ‘Thank you ma’am for everything.’ “
The marmalade-loving bear also shared thanks on Twitter following the awards show, writing, “Mr Brown said we’ve won a BAFTA but I’m not quite sure what that means. Bear Awards For Teatime Adventures? How marvellous. Thank you all. #BAFTATVAwards”
When Queen Elizabeth died on Sept. 8 at age 96, Paddington Bear also made a statement on social media.
“Thank you Ma’am, for everything,” the official Paddington account wrote in a Twitter tribute.
Last June, Queen Elizabeth surprised everyone when she joined Paddington in the fun sketch to open the Platinum Party at the Palace. The hilarious skit featured the monarch hosting the beloved bear for tea — and revealing what she keeps in her trusty handbag: a marmalade sandwich!
The surprise spot was kept top secret — so much so that even members of the royal family had no idea about it until they were watching it open the star-studded concert. Prince George and Princess Charlotte were clearly amazed, smiling and gasping as they watched their great-grandmother’s interactions with Paddington onscreen. (Then-Prince Charles, however, may have been clued in — his speech earlier in the day did reference a marmalade sandwich.)
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Following Queen Elizabeth‘s death, over 1,000 Paddington Bear teddies were left outside royal residences by mourners to honor the late monarch. Days later, Buckingham Palace, The Royal Parks and Barnado’s children’s charity announced that the bears would be professionally cleaned and donated to Barnado’s children’s services.
Queen Elizabeth passed the patronage to Queen Camilla, who was then known as the Duchess of Cornwall, in 2016, and King Charles’ wife attended a special picnic to see the bears united with their new owners.
Joining the party were the stars of the movie, Hugh Bonneville and Madeleine Harris (Mr. Brown and Judy Brown, respectively) and Karen Jankel, the daughter of Paddington author Michael Bond, for whom the original stories were written. Bonneville read the story Paddington Takes A Bath to the children.