The British invasion in Hollywood was a welcome one on Saturday afternoon at BAFTA’s annual tea party at the SLS Hotel. “We get to bring the essence of Britain over, show you what we’re all about really,” said “Gossip Girl” actor Ed Westwick.
“Mad Men” creator Matthew Weiner called it one of his favorite events. “It’s fun to stop by to interact with our British counterparts and also I’m a fan of a lot of these people,” he said, adding, “I’m a coffee drinker and so are most people in Britain. But it’s genteel, old-fashioned, and well-mannered and I like that.” Among Weiner’s peers was fellow scribe Julian Fellowes, creator of “Downton Abbey.” “It’s always fun to me,” said Fellowes. “I mean, I’m not one of those who has to come to L.A. to spend all my time with Brits, but still it is quite fun to have a bit of a reunion in the middle of this incredibly Hollywood event.”
On proper high-tea etiquette, “Game of Thrones” star Sophie Turner said, “I’m not very good at that kind of stuff. I’m British, but I always kind of slurp my tea, spilling it down me. I met the Queen and I wasn’t very good at that, either.” Luckily, the high temperatures gave her the option to sip a tall glass of water instead along with cast mate Gwendoline Christie. But Kiernan Shipka had another request. “I hope they have iced tea because it’s quite hot out,” she said. One who didn’t shy away from a teacup was first-time Emmy nominee Lorraine Toussaint, who said, “I love BAFTA because I’m secretly a Brit; I’m a colonized creature from the Caribbean. I really do tea every day and it really is highly ritualized. I warm my milk and I warm the cup and the pot. You’ve got to keep it hot. There’s nothing worse than tepid tea.”