Each year the CDG makes a contribution to financially assist selected young actors through their final year of training.

In 2001 Mary Selway received The Michael Balcon Award for Outstanding British Contribution; the award made her the first casting director to be given a BAFTA! Mary was also honoured by BAFTA when it created its Rising Star Award* in 2006.

In a career that spanned some 35 years and over 100 films Mary became a most respected Casting Director famed for her skill for achieving magnificent ensembles as well as her passion for bringing on new talent. A selection of Mary’s credits include: Withnail and I: Notting Hill: Gosford Park: Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom: The Return of the Jedi: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Sadly we lost Mary to cancer in 2004. In 2005 The Casting Directors’ Guild chose to honour Mary’s memory by establishing our ‘Mary Selway Bursary’. Initially a biannual award, our contribution is now made annually and split between two students which is curated through the SOLT/Olivier Bursary Scheme**.

‘She would take more joy from bringing an unknown face to a three-line part than in hooking the hottest Hollywood star’ Roger Michell

Mary was passionate about finding and developing new talent so we are delighted to honour her memory with this award.

The BAFTA Rising Star Award*

‘The Orange (Now EE) Rising Star Award was launched at the Orange British Academy Film Awards in 2006 to honour the year’s brightest young actor or actress.

As the only audience award of the ceremony, the Orange Rising Star Award honours a young actor/actress of any nationality who has demonstrated exceptional talent and begun to capture the imagination of the British public as a film star in the making.

The Award is dedicated to the memory of Mary Selway the highly-respected, BAFTA-winning British casting director who died in 2004. Mary was involved on some of the biggest movies of the 20th century; she helped create some of the silver screen’s most memorable characters and launched the careers of many stars. She is dearly missed.’

Doreen Jones was a leading British Casting Director. She had a career that spanned over 4 decades and worked on more than 400 television dramas and series. She cast the hugely successful Brideshead Revisited during her time as Head of Casting at Granada. Her many other works include, the early Prime Suspect series, starring Helen Mirren, Elizabeth 1, again starring Helen Mirren. More recently she cast Wallander and The Honourable Woman where she received C21Media’s Drama Award for Best Casting of a Drama Series in 2014.

The producer, Derek Granger, said of her “Doreen had a sharp instinct for the subtle chemistry that can exist between actors and knew well how players could spark off each other”.

Among many others Helen Mirren has been quoted as saying “Doreen was simply the best. In my years of working with her on Prime Suspect, the actors I worked with, found by Doreen, were mostly unknown and at the very beginning of their careers.
Her understanding and instinct for finding and encouraging young actors, and then casting them in the roles that fit their individuality was so very very good”.

In 2005, she became one of only two British casting directors to receive an Emmy for her work on the miniseries, Elizabeth 1.

Doreen was one of the founders of the Casting Directors’ Guild.

She sadly died in February 2017.

Society of London Theatre’s Laurence Olivier Bursary**

Established in 1987 to commemorate Lord Olivier’s 80th birthday, the aim of the bursaries is to help potentially talented students at the end of their second year of drama school that are facing financial difficulties in completing their studies.

Approximately 40 nominees, put forward by their drama schools, are invited to audition in front of a panel of SOLT and CDG members before the bursaries are distributed between the chosen recipients.