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News > Alumnae > BAFTA and Emmy Award Success for Old Queens Classmates!

BAFTA and Emmy Award Success for Old Queens Classmates!

We caught up with PC (Patricia) and MJ (Morgan-Jane) to learn more about their careers to date and how the friendships forged during their time at Queen's have stood them in such good stead!
16 Dec 2022
Written by Elly Broughton
PC & MJ together.
PC & MJ together.

Many congratulations from everyone at Queen’s to two of our alumnae from the Class of 2004; PC Williams, who won a BAFTA award for Best Costume Design earlier this year, and MJ Delaney who recently won an Emmy for Outstanding Direction of a Comedy Series. We caught up with PC (Patricia) and MJ (Morgan-Jane) to learn more about their careers to date and how the friendships forged during their time at Queen’s have stood them in such good stead! We look forward to hearing about more success from this talented group of Old Queens in the future.

PC Williams  (1997 – 2004)

You won the BAFTA award for Best Costume Design for the Channel 4 Series We are Lady Parts. What was your favourite thing about working on the series?

I love collaborating with folks to bring stories to life and this show really was that. It was an amazing collaborative journey with the creative heads of department; Director: Nida Manzoor, Production Designer: Simon Walker, Hair & Make-up Designer: Claire Carter & Cinematographer: Diana Olifirova. We all turned up with ideas and open minds. Collectively, we approached the project with the ethos that it is an entity much bigger than our individual departments. So we strived to achieve what was best for the show, irrespective of what was most flashy for our individual departments. That selflessness for the craft, and being in a space where that was everyone’s approach, really was my favourite thing about working on the series.  

Do you have any upcoming projects you can tell us about?

I feel like I'm always waiting for projects to come out! I have a movie with Jodie Comer called "The End We Start From", directed by Mahalia Belo that is dark, sad and beautiful; and I'm really interested in the way in which people will respond to it. I have a film out in April (both here and in the states) with Nida Manzoor and Simon Walker, called “Polite Society”. It's super fun, young, action-packed and I think it's really, really funny. I'm excited for folks to see that. I also have a film coming out on Netflix directed by Kibwe Taveras that was written by Daniel Kaluuya. It's set in 2044 and is all about London; it features some of the most exciting costumes that I've ever created in it. There's a lot coming up. I'm currently designing my fourth feature of the year, and once that's announced I can share BUT it's exciting and means a lot to me. 

Did you enjoy Art at Queen’s?

I did! I did both fine art and textiles as my A-levels at Queen’s.

When did you know you wanted to pursue a career in Costume Design?

I didn’t know when I was a pupil at Queen’s that I wanted to work in costume design, but I knew I wanted to tell stories. I would do the costumes in the school play but hadn't really thought about costume design as a career. I wanted to be a fashion designer. I think it's because I always thought of costume design in the context of period costumes and I had zero interest in that. I like to play with the contemporary and approach costume design from a stylist’s perspective. It was actually working with my friends MJ Delaney (a director – see below!) and Soraya Gilani (a production designer) on commercials and our debut feature "Powder Room" that I really began exploring what costume design was.

MJ Delaney (OQ 1997-2004)

You won the Primetime Emmy Award for your work directing episodes of “Ted Lasso”. What was your favourite thing about working on the series? 

There is a lovely atmosphere on that show. We all have fun and enjoy each other’s company. I went back to shoot the second season shortly after having a baby, and I knew that my daughter would be welcomed on to the set and well looked after by the Lasso ‘family’, which she was.

What was your breakthrough project? 

I made a spoof of the Jay Z and Alicia Keys video for “Empire State of Mind”, set in Newport, South Wales. It was off the back of the viral success of that video that I got picked up by agents and was able to make a career out of directing.

Do you have any upcoming projects you can tell us about?

I directed the first season of the documentary series GUTSY, which recently came out on Apple TV+. Season 3 of “Ted Lasso” will be out sometime next year. And I’m currently working on a show called “Renegade Nell” for Disney+; it’s a sci-fi action-adventure set in 1705, about a highwaywoman on the run.

What did you do when you left Queen’s, after your A-levels? 

I studied English at Oxford, as did two of my friends from my year, Soraya and Molly, thanks to the fantastic English department at Queen’s. After that I worked on magazines for a bit, which was fun but not the right fit for me. My first job in the film industry was as a costume assistant. I realised I loved it and so started directing my own little homemade films - music videos for friends who had bands, little art films, stuff like that. I was lucky because the technology to be able to edit yourself at home, relatively cheaply, had just become available. Digital SLRs has just become a thing. And YouTube was only four or five years old and therefore still a bit more democratic. So I was able to build a reel and find an audience without having to go to film school.

What was the highlight of your time at Queen’s?

Undoubtedly the friends I made, who remain my closest friends to this day. Many of us work together fairly regularly, too, as we’re working in the same or adjacent industries, which is an absolute dream. It’s been such a privilege to watch them grow up into this talented, kind, funny and unique group of women. I’m constantly in awe of all of them and I honestly don’t know what I’d do without them.

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