Joanna Lumley 'thrilled' to be replacing Stephen Fry as BAFTA host

Ben Arnold
·Contributor
The Shape of Water leads 2018 BAFTA nominations, Joanna Lumley confirmed as new host
The Shape of Water leads 2018 BAFTA nominations, Joanna Lumley confirmed as new host

Joanna Lumley has said that she’s ‘thrilled’ to be replacing Stephen Fry as the host of the BAFTAs.

Fry confirmed that he’d be leaving his post last week, after 12 years presenting the annual awards show, with bookies immediately offering even money on Graham Norton being his replacement.

However along with the nominations for this year’s awards being announced this morning, so was the replacement of Fry with the Ab Fab star.

“Honestly, how exciting is this?” she said. “It’s just so unbelievably thrilling. Who thought I’d turn into Stephen Fry?

“I want to thank Bafta so much for asking me to do this. I said yes indecently quickly.”

Lumley will be only the second woman to host the BAFTAs since Mariella Frostrup co-hosted the bash wth Fry in 2001.

On his departing the role, Fry said that ‘after so long a time I felt it only right to stand down and let others take the BAFTAs on to new heights and greater glories’.

(Credit: Ian West/PA)
(Credit: Ian West/PA)

“What fun it will be to watch BAFTA 2018 without my heart hammering, mouth drying and knees trembling,” he added.

Lumley was announced alongside a wealth of British talent up for gongs this year, including Daniel Day-Lewis and Daniel Kaluuya for Best Actor and Sally Hawkins and Saoirse Ronan for Best Actress.

Guillermo Del Toro’s fantasy romance The Shape of Water, which stars Hawkins in the lead role, has scored 12 nominations in all, leading the field.

Meanwhile, the nominations for Outstanding British Film are Darkest Hour, The Death of Stalin, God’s Own Country, Lady Macbeth, Paddington 2 and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

The awards will be handed out at the Royal Albert Hall on February 18.

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