Stephen Fry on pre-Bafta nerves and putting the audience at ease
With the BAFTAs just days away, the gongs buffed to a shine and the red carpet ready to roll, host Stephen Fry spoke about the part he will be playing on the night.
As an actor himself, he explained he could "get away with a little more cheek" than most.
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Aside from pushing the boundaries, he explained, "My job is to make people feel comfortable through the evening because they are potentially very uncomfortable evenings."
The eloquent comedian, actor and writer will host the 66th BAFTA ceremony this Sunday. Stephen is no stranger to this highlight of the showbiz calendar as this will be the eighth time he has hosted the star-studded ceremony. Stephen ran the show from 2001 to 2006 and returned to replace Jonathon Ross in 2011.
It isn’t just those in the running for a prestigious award who suffer from the jitters. When faced with a vast VIP audience filling the Royal Opera House in London’s Covent Garden, Stephen has to keep himself calm.
"It is a very strange experience," he said. "It slightly throws you.
"You learn that it is your job to reverse that because the audience is nervous because four fifths of time they are probably connected to a film which is in with a chance of winning."
Once the show is up and running, Stephen focuses on maintaining pace. "My philosophy has always been that no one in the history of the genre has ever left an awards ceremony and said 'it was good but it was a bit too short'", he said. "So I just keep things moving along."
It has been a busy few days for Stephen, on Monday he spent the day polishing BAFTA gongs and plugging the event. Getting into the Valentines Day spirit, the king of Twitter is also working with a charity, Kissing for Charity, who aim to protect Asian elephants. The highest bidder will win the opportunity for Stephen to deliver them a very unique and modern marriage proposal -he will propose to their loved one on their behalf via a tweet.