Stephen Fry has confirmed he has stepped down as host of the BAFTA Film Awards, after 12 years taking centre stage at the annual ceremony. The 60-year-old presenter explained that it was time to let someone else "take the BAFTAs on to new heights and greater glories." On Friday, he said: "Over the last two decades I have especially loved watching the emergence of new young film talent behind and in front of the camera. But 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."
Stephen Fry has stepped down as BAFTAs host
READ: Stephen Fry opens up about his breakdown and husband Elliott Spencer
He added: "What fun it will be to watch BAFTA 2018 without my heart hammering, mouth drying and knees trembling." The new host will be named on Tuesday, when this year's nominees are revealed. The national treasure first hosted the awards in 2001, and swiftly went on to become a much-loved fixture thanks to his infectious personality. Stephen had a break from hosting duties between 2007-11, with chat show host Jonathan Ross taking over.
In 2016, Stephen came under fire for remarks he made about costume designer Jenny Beavan, joking that she looked like a "bag lady" when she accepted her award. Stephen quipped: "Only one of the greatest cinematic costume designers would come to the awards ceremony dressed like a bag lady." After the show, he later tweeted that Jenny was a dear friend. "So just a word to the tragic figures who think calling Jenny Beavan a bag lady was an insult. She's a dear friend and she got it. Derrr. Christ I want to leave the planet," he wrote. Stephen followed it up with a photo of the pair at the BAFTAs afterparty and captioned it: "Jenny Baglady Beavan and Stephen Outrageous Misogynist Swine Fry." This year's ceremony will take place at London's Royal Albert Hall on 18 February.