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Bafta host Rebel Wilson opens film ceremony with weight loss gags

Rebel Wilson (Ian West/PA)
Rebel Wilson (Ian West/PA)

Actress Rebel Wilson has opened the Bafta film awards by making jokes about her recent weight loss.

The Pitch Perfect star, who is hosting the annual celebration of film, took to the stage in a sparkly red gown and said: “I might look a bit different from the last time you saw me here.”

Referring to a picture of her at the 2020 ceremony that appeared on screen, she added: “That was me two years ago and since then I’ve done quite a transformation – I hope JK Rowling still approves.

“Everyone is asking me, why did you lose weight? Clearly it was to get the attention of Robert Pattinson,” she joked.

She continued: “I didn’t lose weight just to get a guy, I did it to get more acting roles.

British Academy Film Awards 2022 – Arrivals – London
Rebel Wilson (Ian West/PA)

“Now I can play the non-funny love interest in an Adam Sandler film.”

She also joked about the box office success of The Batman, saying it was “ironic” the film had been such a hit in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

She said: “One man and a bat started everything, decimating the film industry, two years later one man and a bat should be the one to save it.”

Wilson also quipped she would be taking over from Daniel Craig as the next James Bond.

The Australian actress told the Bafta audience: “Hold on to your martinis because the Broccolis have let me announce it here and now, this is a scoop, I’m proud to announce that the new James Bond will be me! Oh my god, yes!

“I don’t want people going crazy because there will be a female James Bond, it’s not going to change things that much.”

She added: “Here’s my pitch for the new Bond film – Bond goes to Australia and it can be called Die And G’day.

“And because of the gender pay gap I actually won’t be 007, I’ll be 004.5″

Wilson, who had promised she would not shy away from risque jokes, later added: “I was going to do a musical number as host – it was about Prince Andrew.

“It was on roller-skates. It was called Pizza Express but don’t worry, I’m not going to do it, I’m not going to sing.

“I’m saving my voice for the sequel to Cats.”

The first Bafta film award of the 2022 ceremony was given to sci-fi blockbuster Dune for special visual effects.

The film, directed by Denis Villeneuve and based on Frank Herbert’s 1965 novel, features a star-studded ensemble cast including Timothee Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson and Oscar Isaac, and leads the pack with 11 nods.

It also won the second prize of the night for best cinematography.

The show opened with a performance of Diamonds Are Forever by Dame Shirley Bassey, in celebration of the 60th anniversary of the film franchise.

The Duke of Cambridge, who is the president of Bafta, is not attending the ceremony this year but has recorded a special video message that will air during the show.

The EE British Academy Film Awards will air on BBC One at 7pm.

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