Sacha Baron Cohen thrilled the British public as he collected an accolade as his Ali G persona at the British Comedy Awards on Wednesday night.
Commemorated for his outstanding contribution to British Comedy by Sir Ben Kingsley at the ceremony, the star stepped on stage in gold gangster get up, reviving the persona that kick-started his career more than a decade ago. Sacha's wife and actress Isla Fisher roared with laughter at her husband's re-emergence as the character. Speaking of his success, the wannabe rapper quipped: "I is grown up now. I ain't living in my nan's house anymore. I am living in her garage".
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Known for his controversial jibes, the comedian continued: "Can you believe it's been ten years since I's been on the telly? Times has been tough means me now well skint. These day I has got to buy me tracksuits from second hand shops." The funnyman then turned to reveal the name "Savile" emblazoned on the back of his tracksuit, making a dig at the late presenter accused of a string of sexual offences.
Sacha was also joined by comedy duo Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer in receiving a prestiguous trophy. The pair received the ceremony's Lifetime Achievement Award for their surrealist antics, seen on panel show Shooting Stars as well as their joint comedy shows over the years. Overjoyed to receive the honour, Bob said: "I'm really proud that Jim and I have always written our own guff. It's great to have that recognised." Vic added : "I am most cock-a-hoop over being awarded this most prestigious of trophies."
Sarah Millican lost her Comedy Queen crown to Jack Whitehall, who seemed incredibly shocked to win the accolade. The Fresh Meat star quipped: "This feels a bit like when The Only Way Is Essex got a BAFTA." Lee Mack and Jo Brand went home with Best Male and Female TV Comic awards respectively, although only Lee could make the ceremony. Pictured playing an organ in a church, Jo laughed along with a local vicar as she thanked her fans.
Period comedy Hunderby and political satire The Thick Of It also came out of this year's awards victorious. Nighty Night's Julia Davis was thrilled to pick up the Best New Comedy Programme and Best Sitcom awards for her spoof based on Daphne Du Maurier's Rebecca. Peter Capedi and Rebecca Front were awarded the Best Actor and Actress gongs for The Thick Of It, ensuring that the show's performance was far from an "omnishambles"-- a word Peter had coined himself which has since entered the Oxford Dictionary. Skins actor Peter couldn't resist humiliation his teenage daughter, and declared: "Next time my daughter says that I am not funny, I am going to wave this in her face. Just so you know."
Impressionist Morgana Robinson was also hailed the Best Newcomer of the year. Receiving a great deal of critical acclaim for her portrayals of Frankie Boyle, Danny Dyer and Amy Childs on Very Important People, the comedienne has been hailed as "a fresh performer with a huge amount of potential."
The ceremony, hosted by Jonathan Ross, began in 1990. The TV presenter has hosted all but two ceremonies since the show's origin.