Richard Ayoade

Richard Ayoade

The Cambridge-educated son of a Nigerian father and Swedish mother, Richard Ayoade first came to prominence starring in and co-writing the 2000 Edinburgh Fringe show Garth Merenghi's Fright Knight with Matthew Holness, winning the Perrier Award for its sequel, Garth Merenghi's Netherhead, the following year. The show transferred to Channel Four in 2004 as Garth Merenghi's Darkplace, before spawning the spin-off 80s chat show spoof, Man to Man with Dean Learner, fronted by Ayoade's 'smut-peddler' character.

Appearances in The Mighty Boosh and Nathan Barley were followed by his highest profile role to date in Graham Linehan's sitcom The IT Crowd, playing socially inept tech support worker Moss, a role he reprised for an unaired US adaptation in 2009.

Establishing a parallel career as a music video director for the likes of The Arctic Monkeys, Kasabian and The Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs, he directed his first film, the coming-of-age comedy-drama Submarine in 2010, and his second, The Double, a nightmarish, dystopian comedy-drama, loosely based on Fyodor Dostoevsky's novella, in 2014.

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Who won the 2022 comedy Baftas?

Triumphs for Sophie Willan, Jamie Demetriou, Motherland and Mo Gilligan. Watch the acceptance speeches

Sophie Willan has picked up another Bafta for Alma’s Not Normal.

The comic has won the award for best female performance in a comedy programme for taking the title role, a year after winning a Bafta craft award for writing the pilot.

Willan dedicated her award to her grandmother who brought her up, and who died during filming of the forthcoming second series.

Fellow nominees were Aimee Lou Wood for Sex Education; Aisling Bea for This Way Up; Anjana Vasan for We Are Lady Parts; Natasia Demetriou for Stath Lets Flats and Rose Matafeo for Starstruck.

Jamie Demetriou won best male performance in a comedy programme for Stath Lets Flats.

He said it was ‘mad’ that he won, and congratulated his fellow nominees Joseph Gilgun (for Brassic): Ncuti Gatwa (Sex Education); Samson Kayo (Bloods); Steve Coogan (This Time With Alan Partridge); Tim Renkow (Jerk).

And he got a laugh for appearing emotional and saying: ‘I promised myself I wouldn't sing…’

Motherland won best scripted comedy ahead of Alma's Not Normal, Stath Lets Flats and We Are Lady Parts.

Holly Walsh, one of the writers, thanked the cast, director, editor, crew and producer – and praised the other nominees for all featuring ‘amazing women being funny and stupid and dumb and beautiful and everything you want to see’.

Mo Gilligan won best comedy entertainment show for his Channel 4 programme The Latish Show, beating Graham Norton, Munya Chawawa’s YouTube series Race Around Britain and Romesh Ranganathan’s The Ranganathan.

In an emotional speech, Gilligan said: ‘In 2017, when I got offered this show, my mental health wasn’t in the best place. Channel 4 bought me into this massive building… and they trusted me to be myself and bring black boy joy to screens.'

Gilligan’s sometimes collaborator Big Zuu won two Baftas, for best feature and best entertainment performance for Big Zuu's Big Eats, while Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway won best entertainment show.

In a previous ceremony, Nida Manzoor won a Bafta craft award for comedy writing on We Are Lady Parts, which also won awards for casting and costume awards.

As announced in advance, Sir Billy Connolly received the Bafta fellowship award, the highest accolade the academy can hand out. He sent an acceptance speech from his Florida home saying: ‘I’m very proud to receive this.’

The show was hosted by Richard Ayoade. Here are his opening remarks:

There was also praise for Lee Mack and Chris McCausland’s double act in giving Willan her award.Comments on Twitter included:

  • ‘Lee Mack and Chris McCausland have just pulled off a pure Morecambe and Wise moment with their nominations slot sketch. Belly laughing stuff. Genius.’
  • ‘Personally I think that Lee Mack and Chris McCausland won the BAFTAs this year.’
  • ‘Lee Mack and Chris McCausland deserve a show of their own. Proper comedy!’
  • ‘Next year there should be a BAFTA for the funniest BAFTA category intro and it should go to Lee Mack and Chris McCausland

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Published: 8 May 2022

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Book (2019)
Ayoade On Top

Book (2017)
The Grip Of Film

DVD (2009)
IT Crowd Series 3

DVD (2007)
AD/BC: A Rock Opera

Past Shows

Edinburgh Fringe 2000

Garth Marenghi's Fright Knight

Edinburgh Fringe 2001

Garth Marenghi's Netherhead


Claire Nightingale
Contact by email
22 Rathbone Street
Office: 020 7287 1112

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