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Stephen Fry Has Quit Twitter After Backlash At His BAFTAs “Bag Lady” Joke

There was outrage on Twitter after Fry said Jenny Beaven, who won the costume design award at the BAFTAs, had "come dressed as a bag lady". Update: Fry has posted on his blog that he has left Twitter.

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One of the most talked-about moments of the BAFTAs on Sunday night came when host Stephen Fry said the winner of the costume design award, Jenny Beaven, had come dressed as a "bag lady".


Fry joked: "Only one of the great cinematic costume designers would come to an awards ceremony dressed as a bag lady."


The crowd responded mainly with laughter.


But on Twitter, some people were upset at Fry's comments.

Disgusted by Stephen Fry @BAFTA totally uncalled for comment. Well done Jenny Beaven for best costume design in Mad Max: Fury Road

Was enjoying the #EEBAFTAs until @stephenfry's comment re: best costume designer. It's an awards show, not a misogynistic tabloid spread 😒

'Bag lady'? Says the man dressed as my great aunt's dining room curtains. #EEBAFTAs

The BAFTAs took place nearly two hours before it was broadcast on BBC One. When the moment was aired, Fry had this to say about the outrage:

Twitter / Stephen Fry

An audience member at the BAFTAs also told BuzzFeed News that the joke was scripted, as they were able to see the autocue Fry was using.

Fry also posted this picture at the BAFTAs after-party.

Twitter / Stephen Fry

Update 4:45pm 15 February: This morning Fry deactivated his Twitter. He has since written a blog saying that he won't return to Twitter any time soon. Below is an excerpt of his blog entry:

Oh goodness, what fun twitter was in the early days, a secret bathing-pool in a magical glade in an enchanted forest. It was glorious 'to turn as swimmers into cleanness leaping.' We frolicked and water-bombed and sometimes, in the moonlight, skinny-dipped. We chattered and laughed and put the world to rights and shared thoughts sacred, silly and profane. But now the pool is stagnant. It is frothy with scum, clogged with weeds and littered with broken glass, sharp rocks and slimy rubbish. If you don't watch yourself, with every move you'll end up being gashed, broken, bruised or contused. Even if you negotiate the sharp rocks you'll soon feel that too many people have peed in the pool for you to want to swim there any more. The fun is over.