‘Roots’ actor Malachi Kirby joined 17 other ‘Breakthrough Brits’ honoured by the British Academy Film and Television Awards (BAFTA) on Tuesday for their work as emerging talents in the entertainment industry.

Kirby, who stars with Anna Paquin in the TV miniseries ‘Roots’, a remake of the 1977 blockbuster TV series that tells the story of an African slave sold to America, said he was pleased to receive the recognition.

“I don’t know what it means yet, but it feels lovely, it’s a lovely feeling. It feels really supportive,” the 27-year-old actor told reporters at the London event.

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The ‘Breakthrough Brits’ initiative was launched in 2013 to support the UK’s future stars in the film, television and games industries. Winners receive one year of mentoring, guidance sessions, networking opportunities, an international travel bursary and free access to BAFTA events.

Florence Pugh, a 20-year-old actress who stars in the new film “Lady Macbeth”, said the recognition was important at this stage in her career.

“It gives you the reason to be happy that you are going in the right direction and what you have done so far is good,” she said.

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Past ‘Breakthrough Brits’ winners include 2014’s Katie Leung, who played Daniel Radcliffe’s first girlfriend in the blockbuster ‘Harry Potter’ movies.