Comedian Stephen Fry won’t be hosting this year’s BAFTAs.
That’s right – he’s stepping down… and a new host will be announced shortly.
“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,” he explained in an official statement.
Of course, Stephen Fry has been a staple of the BAFTA Awards ceremony, hosting the prestigious British awards a total of twelve times since his first appearance in 2001 with only a short break from his hosting duties between 2007 and 2011.
“Every one of the twelve BAFTA film award ceremonies that I had the privilege of hosting has a place in my memory,” he explained. “The mixture of glamour, glory, drama and – occasionally – embarrassment and hiccup holds a unique place in the British film calendar.”
“Over the last two decades I have especially loved watching the emergence of new young film talent behind and in front of the camera.”
BAFTA thanked him for making the awards “such memorable and joyous occasions”.
His replacement will be announced on Tuesday, along with this year’s full list of nominees.
“I want to thank all the production staff, Amanda Berry and her wonderful BAFTA colleagues, the BBC and all those who helped make every year so enjoyable,” he said. “I reserve especial gratitude and imagination for Ivor Baddiel and Phil Kerr, whose work on the scripts was so skilful it made people think I’d written every line myself.”
“What fun it will be to watch BAFTA 2018 without my heart hammering, mouth drying and knees trembling.”
Who will take over from Stephen Fry?
For now, we’ll have to wait and see… but there have already been suggestions that we could see Johnathon Ross return after he took over Fry’s hosting duties from 2007-2011. And there are plenty of other suggestions, too, including the likes of Claudia Winkleman (who hosted the BBC’s flagship ‘Film…’ programme) as well as James Corden and even Graham Norton.