Joe Lycett explains reason behind unusual royal-themed Bafta outfit

Joe Lycett explains reason behind unusual royal-themed Bafta outfit
Joe Lycett attended the Bafta Television Awards dressed as Queen Elizabeth I (Ian West/PA)
PA Wire/PA Images - Ian West

Comedian Joe Lycett has explained why he appeared at the Baftas dressed as Queen Elizabeth I.

The TV presenter arrived on the red carpet at the Royal Festival Hall on Sunday wearing a flowing silver cape, which resembled a gown and trailed along the floor, as well as an Elizabethan-style high ruff around his neck.

He accessorised the outfit with a black bowtie with drop-pearl detail and carried two fans – one battery-powered and one manual – and had dyed his hair a deep, vibrant red in tribute to the English monarch who reigned from 1558 to 1603.

The unusual retro fashion choice was the result of a bet Lycett had made with his aunts, Margaret and Pauline, that he would don period dress if they managed to get 100,000 followers for their new Instagram account.

Speaking on the red carpet, Lycett, who was nominated for two Baftas on Sunday night, said he had dressed as “Queen Elizabeth I, hence this oven-baked salmon that I’m in”.

He added: “This is the hottest I’ve ever been, I think.

“I’m over the moon with it, it’s got such scale but it’s not costume, it’s modern.”

When his Channel 4 show Late Night Lycett won the entertainment performance Bafta, he took to the stage, declaring: “I lost a bet, I’m so hot and I need a piss.

“Thanks to my mum and dad, Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII.”

In a press conference following his win, Lycett, whose show is based in Birmingham, reflected on the importance of diversity and regional opportunities for those working in the TV industry.

BAFTA TV Awards 2024 \u2013 LondonJoe Lycett in the press room after winning the Entertainment Performance award for Late Night Lycett at the BAFTA TV Awards 2024 (Ian West/PA)PA Wire/PA Images - Ian West

He said: “I feel it’s Birmingham time. I think it’s about making the incentive for the productions that actually having trainees and having people from different backgrounds in your shows, make them better and make the work experience better and make everyone happier.

“In my experience, I’ve been on some very unhappy productions, and often they’re the ones that are just all about the bottom line and just want to make money and actually the ones where you do bring people up, and lots of people talked about it tonight in their speeches tonight, Lorraine was talking about it.

“I think it’s good for everyone and it’s good for the show. It’s good for production.”

Viewers watching at home said on social media the bold outfit brought them “total joy”.

“I love that every shot of the crowd, I can see Joe Lycett sitting there as the queen he is,” one viewer wrote.

Another said: “Joe Lycett’s outfit is just a total joy I love it.”

“Joe Lycett actually went through with his promise to attend the BAFTAs dressed as Elizabeth I. Incredible,” a third wrote.”

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