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Joanna Lumley to Return as BAFTA Awards Host

“Absolutely Fabulous” star Joanna Lumley has been tapped to host the BAFTA Film Awards ceremony for the second consecutive year.

Lumley will reprise her emcee role at the Feb. 10 gala in London’s iconic Royal Albert Hall.

“We’re thrilled that Joanna has agreed to return as our host for a second year,” Emma Baehr, BAFTA’s director of awards, said in a statement released Wednesday. “She was fantastic and we’re looking forward to the ceremony with her once again at the helm.”

The BAFTAs are the world’s highest-profile acting awards after the Oscars. Nominees will be announced Jan. 9, except for those in the coveted “rising star” category, who will be unveiled Thursday.

Lumley is best-known for her performance as boozy, foul-mouthed Patsy Stone in the comedy series “Absolutely Fabulous.” She has also presented travel shows on British TV that have whisked her to Graceland in the U.S., to India and on a trans-Siberian journey from Hong Kong to Moscow.

Last year, Lumley received a BAFTA fellowship – the British academy’s highest honor – a few months after hosting her first Film Awards ceremony, taking over as emcee from the long-serving Stephen Fry. Her pre-recorded opening skit and the live monologue that followed had the audience, and millions of British viewers, in stitches.

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“The exceedingly charming Hugh Grant is in the building, fresh from his scene-stealing performance in ‘Paddington 2,'” Lumley said during her monologue. “Quite how Hugh managed to portray a vain and egocentric actor is beyond me.”

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