BBC responds to complaints about Rebel Wilson's jokes at this year's Baftas

The BBC has responded to complaints about Rebel Wilson’s jokes at this year’s Baftas.

The Australian comedy actor took on presenting duties for the first at the annual film awards earlier this month, with the BBC since confirming it has received complaints about its coverage of the ceremony.

While the broadcaster did not specify which jokes had sparked a reaction from viewers, Rebel’s quips on the night covered topics including her weight loss, Meghan and Harry’s Oprah interview, Jada Smith’s extra-marital relationships, and Prince Andrew.

Rebel Wilson hosting this year's Baftas (Photo: James Veysey/Shutterstock for BAFTA)
Rebel Wilson hosting this year's Baftas (Photo: James Veysey/Shutterstock for BAFTA)

In response, the BBC issued a statement on its Executive Complaints Unit website, insisting it was not their “intention to offend viewers”.

It said: “Comedy is one of the most subjective areas of programming and views will always differ on what’s acceptable, and what’s appropriate at different times of the day. It’s never our intention to offend viewers and we always think very carefully about what we broadcast to ensure that it isn’t outside of the expectations of the majority of the audience.

“We acknowledge that not everyone will agree with the decisions we take but this is something we do take seriously.”

During the ceremony, Rebel – who had promised she would not shy away from risque jokes – said of Prince Andrew: “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.”

After Will Smith had won the leading actor award for King Richard, Rebel said she thought his best performance in the past year was “being OK with all of his wife’s boyfriends”.

After the crowd were audibly shocked, she added: “What? He didn’t show up. You can’t use Covid as an excuse any more.”

The ceremony also saw Rebel send a clear message to Vladimir Putin, as she gave him the middle finger as she introduced a musical performance.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.