Senna won the BAFTA awards for Best Documentary and Best Editing at the Royal Opera House on February 12 — giving Formula 1 a welcome boost in front of a stellar audience that included the likes of Brad Pitt, George Clooney and Meryl Streep.
Senna was also nominated in Outstanding British Film, where it lost out to Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.
Producer Eric Fellner said: “This film was made by all of us with love, and all we got back from it was love, and that deeply cynical word commerciality — which I never utter — was never even considered in this situation. We made this because we loved Ayrton, and you showed the love back.
“We need to thank Ayrton Senna for sadly living a too short life, but a life where his fact was even more amazing than fiction.”
“We thank the Senna family for trusting us with his legacy,” said screenwriter Manish Pandey. “When your son dies in circumstances like that, and you get a bunch of guys who turn up and say, ‘listen, we want to tell the story, we think we’re very sensitive, we think we will absolutely tell it right…’ It takes a lot of guts to support people like that, and I’d like to thank them for doing that.”
BAFTA host Stephen Fry gave the film his stamp of approval: “Even if you know nothing about F1 racing and are not even vaguely interested in motor sport you will find Senna one of the greatest documentaries you’ve ever watched.”
Pandey’s next planned project is a drama based on Mike Hawthorn and Peter Collins and their relationship with Enzo Ferrari.