William J Males, a director and founding member ofBAFTA/LA, has died aged 46.

Males startedwork in the entertainment industry as a studio make-up artist and moved intoindependent production on such pictures as Family Reunion and Aftershock.

While at Universal Pictures he worked in marketing,audience research and new media and played an integral part in organising thefirst live webcast of BAFTA/LA's 9th Britannia Awards in 1999.

He served astechnical producer on the show's 10th, 11th and 12th incarnations and waschairman of the BAFTA/LA's technology committee at the time of his death.

Males wasco-opted to become a member of the board of directors in 1999 and wassubsequently elected for two-year terms beginning in 2001 and 2003.

'We aredeeply saddened by this tragic loss," Gary Dartnall, chairman of BAFTA/LA, saidin a statement.

"Wil wasintegral to the formation of BAFTA/LA and has been a consistent contributor inmany areas. We all mourn his passing.'

'Wil was awonderful person and always generous with his time and knowledge," BAFTA/LAexecutive director Donald Haber added. "He had a gift for knowing how to usenew technology in entertainment and communications. Everyone here will misshim."

Males was also amember of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (ATAS) and BAFTA.

He died inhospital in Los Angeles and is survived by his father, James Males. A MemorialService is planned for Thursday (12).